Bhubaneswar: The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has now come to the rescue of its members who are facing hardships due to the second wave of Covid-19 across the country. In a bid to extend support during the pandemic, the EPFO is allowing its members to avail second non-refundable Covid-19 advance.
Through a tweet, EPFO clarified that the EPF members who have already availed the first Covid-19 advance can now opt for a second advance. The members can withdraw upto 75% of PF balance (Employee’s and Employer’s share) or three months of basic salary and DA or claimed amount, whichever is less. All the claims will be settled within three working days, said EPFO.
As per sources, EPFO has deployed a system driven auto-claim settlement process in respect of all such members whose KYC requirements is complete in all respects.
Apart from this, the Labour Ministry has announced additional benefits for workers through ESIC and Social EPFO schemes to address the fears and anxieties of workers concerning well-being of their family members due to increase in incidences of death as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
To aid workers amidst the pandemic, the Government of India has announced additional benefits via the EPFO and ESIC schemes. These include:
-Family pension to be given to dependents of those who lost their lives due to Covid-19 under the Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC).
-Dependent family members of such persons will be entitled to the benefit of pension equivalent to 90% of average daily wage drawn by the worker as per the existing norms.
-This benefit will be available retrospectively with effect from March 24, 2020 and for all such cases till March 24, 2022.
-The insurance benefits under the EDLI scheme have been enhanced and liberalized. Apart from all other beneficiaries, this will in particular help families of employees who have lost their lives due to COVID-19.
- Amount of maximum insurance benefit has been increased from Rs 6 lakh to Rs 7 lakh.
-The provision of minimum insurance benefit of Rs 2.5 lakh has been restored and will apply retrospectively from 15th February 2020 for the next three years.
-To benefit families of contractual/ casual workers, the condition of continuous employment in only one establishment has been liberalized, with benefit being made available to families of even those employees who may have changed jobs in the last 12 months preceding their demise.