New Delhi | Jagran Business Desk: The Employees' Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) is likely to credit interest of 8.5 percent on PF deposits for the year 2020-21 soon. This will benefit over six crore employees by July end, according to reports.

The retirement body has kept the interest rate unchanged at 8.5 percent for the financial year 2021-21. This decision has been taken in the wake of more withdrawals and less contribution by the members due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of the pandemic, the EPFO reduced the interest rate to 8.5 percent - a seven-year low in March 2020. During 2018-19, the interest rate was 8.65 percent while it was 8.55 percent and 8.65 during 2017-18 and 2016-17 respectively.

Furthermore, in lieu of the pandemic, the EPFO recently allowed its members to withdraw money from their retirement fund as a 'non-refundable advance'. Also, the Center introduced a special facility under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, which allows the EPF members to withdraw dearness allowance and basic pay of three months or 75 percent of the PF money.

“To support its subscribers during the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, EPFO has now allowed its members to avail second non-refundable COVID-19 advance. The provision for special withdrawal to meet the financial need of members during the pandemic was introduced in March 2020, under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY)," Ministry of Labour & Employment said.

Here is a step-by-step guide to how users can check their PF balance.

1. Log on to the EPFO portal. Go to the tab ‘Our Services’ and choose the option that says “for employees” from the drop-down menu.

2. Now, click on the option ‘Member passbook’ under the option “Services.”

3. A login page will appear. Enter your UAN number and password here after it has been activated.

4. Once you log in, you can access your EPF account.

Apart from this, the balance could be checked on the phone as well. Once your UAN is integrated with your KYC details, follow these steps:

How to check the balance on phone?

1. Send an SMS to mobile number 7738299899. The message is to be sent in the format ‘EPFOHO UAN ENG‘.

2. You can also give a missed call to 011-22901406 from your registered mobile number. After placing a missed call, you will receive an SMS providing you with your PF details.

Posted By: Sugandha Jha