Retirement fund body Employee Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) notified on Monday, an order to make Universal Account Number (UAN) mandatory for all employers covered under the Employees Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1952.
"We have notified the draft order to make UAN compulsory for all organisations covered under the EPF & MP Act," EPFO's Central Provident Fund Commissioner K K Jalan told PTI.
The government was considering the proposal to make UAN mandatory for availing benefits of the scheme. The UAN facility was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in October last year.
"The deadline for completing the formalities is August 25 after which action will be taken under the powers given to us by the Employees Provident Funds Scheme, 1952, and other applicable laws for failure to comply with the order," Jalan had said after meeting around 150 employers in Bengaluru last week according to media reports.
The UAN remains portable throughout the lifetime of an employee and they don't have to apply for PF transfer claims while changing jobs.
It is even more beneficial for workers in the construction sector, who often change their contractor after short spans of time, finish contracts and take up new jobs.
EPFO had issued over four crore UANs to employers across the country in July last year.
These UANs were then provided to workers and the process of seeding these accounts with KYC details like PAN, Bank Account and Aadhaar started.
As of Monday, as many as 56.34 lakh workers have activated their portable PF account numbers. All subscribers have to activate their UAN themselves by logging into the account.
After the due process, as many as 2.8 crore UANs are ready for activation but these many account holders have not provided their bank account details as per the EPFO website. According to information available, there are additional 1.71 crore UANs which were made ready for activation by subscribers who had provided banks accounts details.
The bank account details are necessary for using UAN for various claims including PF withdrawals. However, those subscribers who have UAN but not provided bank account details can activate their UAN and access it online.