As the main goal of Employees Provident Funds scheme is to provide social security in your retirement, you may withdraw the total fund accumulated on retirement from employment once you reach the age of 58.
However, there are other special provisions under which you can withdraw money from your EPF given you fulfil the required conditions.
1. Illness in some cases
You may apply for a non-refundable advance from your EPF account in case of:
Hospitalisation for at least one month.
Any significant surgical operation in a hospital.
For the treatment of leprosy, TB, paralysis, heart ailment, cancer, or mental derangement.
You can only request the amount up to your basic wages and dearness allowance of 6 months or your share of contribution with interest in the fund, whichever is less.
2. For marriage or higher education of children
You can apply for a non-refundable advance from your EPF account up to 50% of your share of contribution for your marriage or the marriage of your daughter, sister, son or brother or the higher education of your son or daughter.
You can apply only three times under this provision, and you must have completed 7 years’ membership of the fund, and the amount of your share of contribution including the interest should be equal or more than one thousand.
3. Purchase of land or purchase/construction of a house
For land purchase, you can request up to 24 times of your basic wages and dearness allowance, and for home, it is 36 times.
You must have completed 5 years’ of membership to become eligible. However, one should take care of the following conditions:
The land or home should be in your name or jointly owned with the spouse.
You can apply for a single time during your entire service.
The construction must begin within 6 months and should be completed within 12 months.
4. Up to 90% withdrawal before retirement
Once you reach the age of 54 years, you can withdraw up to 90% of the accumulated balance.
5. Abnormal conditions
You may apply for a non-refundable advance of rupees of five thousand or 50% of your total contribution (including interest) if your property, movable or immovable has been damaged by a natural calamity such as floods, earthquakes or riots. You can apply under this provision only if:
It is declared by the state government that the calamity has affected the public in the area.
You produce the certificate from the authority to confirm that your property has been damaged due to the calamity.
You apply within 4 months from the declaration referred to in the first point.