NOTE ON EMPLOYEES ENROLLMENT CAMPAIGN, 2017 UNDER EPF
1. The Central Government has amended paragraph 82 of the Employees’ Provident Funds Scheme, 1952 and inserted paragraph “82A. Special Provision in respect of Employees’ Enrolment Campaign, 2017” vide notification No. G.S.R. 1190(E) dated 30th December, 2016 to be called as the Employees’ Provident Funds (Seventh Amendment) Scheme, 2016 which is effective from 1st January, 2017 and ceases on 31st March, 2017 aiming to provide the PF benefits for the Indian Nationals only.
2. It is an opportunity to the employers to voluntarily come forward and declare details of all such employees who were entitled for PF membership between 1st April, 2009 to 31st December, 2016 but could not be enrolled for any reason. The format of declaration is hereto attached as Annexure A.
3. The employer shall within 15 days from the declaration remit the employer’s contribution and the employee’s contribution deducted from the employee’s wages along with interest and damages. Also the Employer is not liable to pay the Employee’s Contribution if he has not deducted from the wages of the employee.
4. After the payment of Employer’s Employee’s Contribution by the Employer, the Employer is also required to file a return to the Regional Provident Fund Commissioner, specifying the date of eligibility of the employees.
5. If the employer fails to remit the contribution, interest and damages payable by him under the declaration, then such declaration shall be deemed to be not even made under this scheme.
6. Under the Campaign only such an employee can be declared for membership-
(i) who is alive and
(ii) who furnishes Form 11 to the employer and
(iii) who was required or entitled to become member of Employees’ Provident Fund on or after the 1st April, 2009 but before the 1st January, 2017 but could not be enrolled as member for any reason.
7. The incentives available for the employer are as follows:-
(i) The employee’s share of contribution if declared by the employer as not deducted, shall stand waived.
(ii) The damages to be paid by the employer in respect of the employees for whom declaration has been made under this campaign shall be at the rate of Rupee 1 (one) per annum.
(iii) No administrative charges shall be collected from the employer in respect of the contribution made under the declaration.
8. The declaration shall be valid only in respect of those employees who are alive and only if no proceedings under Section 7A of the Act or under paragraph 26B of the Employees’ Provident Funds Scheme, 1952 or under paragraph 8 of the Employees’ Pension Scheme, 1995 have been initiated against their establishment/employer to determine the eligibility for membership of such employees.
9. The declaration shall be made between 1st January, 2017 to 31st March, 2017. The time limit for making the remittances once a declaration has been made is 15 days from the date of declaration. If the employer fails to pay within 15 days of the date of making the declaration, the dues, interest and damages payable by him in respect of the declaration made under this campaign, such declaration shall be deemed to have not been made under this Campaign.
10. No damages will be levied later on the amount remitted under the declaration. Further, the Damages at the rate of Rupee 1 (One) per annum are to be remitted upfront while remitting contribution and interest. Only simple interest @12 % p.a. is to be paid. The facility for making the declaration is online and it can also be filed with the concerned RO/SRO.
11. The amount of Contribution, interest and damages is to be remitted as a supplementary ECRs for every month of the past period enrolment till December, 2016. Simple interest at the rate of 12% per annum and damages at the rate of Rupee one per annum are also to be paid through a separate ECR.
12. The employer should obtained Form 11 from all the employees declared under the Campaign and it is to be signed by the employer also.
13. The declaration made prior to inquiry u/s 7A shall be legally valid and cannot be denied by the Regional Provident Fund Commissioner. Once a notice u/s 7A of the Act is issued, declaration cannot be made.
14. A declaration can be made under the Campaign for the period for which no inquiry under section 7A has been initiated. For example, if the employer declares one employee, Mr. ‘A’ to have joined on 1st April, 2010 the employer will get the benefits under the Campaign viz. (i) waiver of employee’s share, (ii) damages at the rate of Rupee one per year and (iii) no administrative charges, in respect of Mr. ‘A’ only for the period for which the inquiry has not been initiated, i.e. for 1st April, 2010 to 31st March 2011 and for 1st April, 2014 to 31st December,2016.