TDS on PF Withdrawals: A Comprehensive Guide

5paisa Research Team Date: 16 Oct, 2023 04:25 PM IST


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Understanding taxation is crucial to managing your finances effectively in personal finance. One aspect of taxation that often confuses people is Tax Deducted at Source (TDS). This becomes especially relevant when withdrawing funds from your Employee Provident Fund (EPF) account. In this guide, we’ll discuss the various aspects of TDS on PF withdrawal, providing you with a clear understanding of what it entails.

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Section 192A of Income Tax Act

Section 192A of Income Tax Act governs the deduction of TDS on withdrawals from the Employee Provident Fund. It mandates that a TDS must be deducted at the time of payment of EPF withdrawal. This means that when you withdraw funds from your EPF account, a certain percentage of the total amount will be deducted as TDS on pf withdrawal before you receive the remaining amount. The purpose of this provision is to ensure that taxes are paid on EPF withdrawals, just like on other sources of income.

Eligibility for EPF Withdrawal

Certain eligibility criteria need to be met for TDS on pf withdrawal to be applicable. These include the following:

    • Retirement: If you retire and are not employed for two months after retirement, you can withdraw your EPF balance.
    • Unemployment: If you remain unemployed for over two months, you can withdraw your EPF.
    • Change of Job: If you change your job and are unemployed for two months, you can withdraw the EPF.
    • Medical Emergency: During a medical emergency, you can withdraw from your EPF account.
    • Home Loan Repayment: You can withdraw from your EPF to repay a home loan.

These are some of the common scenarios where EPF withdrawal is permitted. However, the amount you can withdraw and the tax implications may vary based on the reason for withdrawal and the duration of your EPF account.

TDS Deduction Limit

When it comes to TDS on pf withdrawal, there are specific rules governing the TDS deduction limit:

    1. Service Period: The TDS deduction limit is primarily determined by the length of an individual's service with their employer. If an employee has served for less than 5 years and they choose to withdraw their PF balance, TDS will be applicable on the withdrawn amount.

    2. Withdrawn Amount: The PF TDS deduction limit is linked to the withdrawn amount. Generally, if the withdrawn PF amount exceeds a specified threshold, TDS will be deducted. The exact threshold may vary but typically applies when the TDS on EPF withdrawal exceeds Rs. 50,000.

    3. TDS Rate: The TDS rate for PF withdrawal is typically set at 10% of the withdrawn amount. However, this rate can change based on government regulations and budget announcements. For instance, there have been instances where the PF TDS rate was reduced to 20% from 30% in certain cases.

    4. PAN Requirement: To ensure accurate TDS deduction, it's crucial to provide your PAN (Permanent Account Number) when applying for PF withdrawal. This allows for proper tracking of your tax liabilities.

    5. Exceptions: There are exceptions to the TDS deduction limit. If the total withdrawal amount is less than Rs. 50,000 or if the TDS on pf withdrawal is made after completing 5 years of continuous service, no TDS is deducted.

Tax on EPF Withdrawal

EPF is a tax-advantaged retirement savings scheme, and its contributions qualify for tax deductions under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act. However, the interest earned and withdrawals are taxable under certain conditions.

    • Tax on Interest: When you take out your EPF savings before working continuously for five years, the interest you've earned on those savings becomes subject to income tax in the year you withdraw.

    • Tax on Withdrawal: If you take out your EPF savings before working continuously for five years, the tax deducted at source (TDS) on the withdrawn amount is taxable in the same financial year. However, withdrawing your EPF savings after working for five years without a break becomes tax-free. You won't owe any tax on the interest earned or the withdrawal amount in this case.

Exemptions Under Section 192A

While TDS is deducted on EPF withdrawals exceeding ₹50,000, there are exemptions and ways to lower the tax burden:

    • Form 15G/15H: When your total income for the financial year is less the taxable limit and you want to avoid TDS deduction, you can submit Form 15G (for individuals under 60 years) or Form 15H (for senior citizens). These forms declare that your income is not taxable; hence, no TDS should be deducted.

    • Tax Rebates: If your TDS PF withdrawal is for specific purposes like higher education or home loan repayment, you may be eligible for tax rebates under various sections of the 
Income Tax Act. This can reduce the overall tax liability on your EPF withdrawal.

Tax on EPF Withdrawal Before 5 Years

Withdrawing your EPF balance before completing five years of continuous service becomes taxable. The tax rate applicable in such cases is as follows:

    • TDS Rate: The TDS rate on EPF withdrawals is typically 10% if the PAN is provided. However, if the PAN is not furnished, the TDS rate is higher at 34.608%.

Rate of TDS on PF Withdrawal

The rate of TDS on EPF withdrawal is a key aspect to consider. Here's a summary of the rates:

    • 10% TDS: If you provide your PAN (Permanent Account Number) while making an EPF withdrawal, the TDS rate is 10% of the withdrawal amount.

    • Higher TDS: A higher TDS rate of 34.608% is applicable if you do not furnish your PAN. This is significantly higher and can lead to a substantial deduction from your EPF withdrawal.


Understanding TDS on PF withdrawals is essential to avoid surprises when you access your EPF funds. Ensure you know the applicable TDS rates, exemptions, and tax implications based on your circumstances. It's advisable to consult with a tax expert or financial advisor to optimize your TDS on EPF withdrawal and minimize the tax burden. Remember that proper tax planning can help you maximize your hard-earned savings.

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