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Provident Fund

What Is UAN and What Is It Used For?

Universal Account Number (UAN) is a twelve-digit unique number allotted to  every salaried employee contributing to his/her Employee Provident Fund (EPF) account. EPF, of course, is a retirement benefit mechanism through which an employee and their employer make periodical, usually monthly, contributions to a fund which is usually a percentage of the basic salary plus dearness allowance.

What Is UAN Number

Universal Account Number (UAN) is a twelve-digit unique number allotted to  every salaried employee contributing to his/her Employee Provident Fund (EPF) account. EPF, of course, is a retirement benefit mechanism through which an employee and their employer make periodical, usually monthly, contributions to a fund which is usually a percentage of the basic salary plus dearness allowance. This allows the employee to ensure that cost of living is taken care of once they retire from active employment because unlike government employees, private sector employees are not given a pension post-retirement.

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) allows every employee and employer who contributes towards the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) scheme with a unique 12-digit number known as the Universal Account Number (UAN). With this number, one can access one’s EPFO profile and check the details of PF contribution, merge all PF accounts, KYC and most importantly claim PF amount.

All contributions to any kind of retirement fund scheme that has been recognised and implemented by the government need to be deposited into an account. This account is called the Universal Account and the identification number allocated to that account is called the Universal Account Number. This number remains the same even if the employee changes jobs. The account simply gets transferred to the new employer. An employee having multiple PF accounts can merge all accounts under a single UAN number. This will enhance the way we manage the account and ensure seamless and hassle-free transfers and withdrawals. 

Why Is UAN Important?

Employee Provident Fund Organisation has digitized all its EPF-related services. Therefore, in order to access EPF information and services, it is important to have a UAN. Using the UAN, employees can carry out many EPF-related services online such as EPF withdrawal, EPF transfer from one account to another, checking EPF account statements, accessing the EPF account passbook, and applying for a loan against EPF. 

There is no requirement to visit the EPF office to avail of any service, you can access all the information at the comfort of your home.

Features Of Universal Account Number

The UAN for an employee acts as the identity of every PF account holder. They have complete access over their profile information like KYC details, Bank account details and much more. 

  • UAN helps in keeping track of the number of times an employee has changed jobs.
  • The EPFO was allowed to have access to the bank and Know Your Customer details of an employee only after UAN was introduced.
  • The introduction of the UAN has considerably reduced the unmindful withdrawal from the PF account and consequently increased savings amongst the salaried class. 
  •  The introduction of the UAN helps in employee verification.
  • An employee can keep track of the monthly contribution made by the employer.
  • Now, an employee can withdraw the PF amount for medical expenses, and marriage at a predetermined rate. 
  • The UAN card has information regarding the KYC details of the employee and their UAN number on the front, while the back contains their five-digit ID and important contact numbers.
  • Every employee is allowed to have only one UAN linked to their PF account. In case, an employee receives two UANs by mistake, they must immediately notify the EPFO via their helpdesk. The concerned authorities will then evaluate the issue, conduct a thorough verification and then cancel the old UAN. 

Documents Required For UAN Registration:

The list of documents required for obtaining a UAN: 

  • Bank Account Details – Account Number, IFSC code, Branch Name.
  • Photo ID Proof – Driving License, Passport, Voter ID, Aadhaar Card
  • Current Address and Permanent Address Proof
  • PAN card
  • It is mandatory to submit an Aadhaar number linked to a bank account and an active mobile number 
  • Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) Card.
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Benefits Of UAN Number

Given below are the advantages of the UAN:

  • The employee can download the EPF statement from the EPFO portal or send an SMS to avail of this facility.
  • Employers will not be able to withhold the EPF money of the employees due to the presence of the UAN. 
  • Every employee can check whether the employer has contributed its share of the money towards EPF.
  • All Member IDs of the employee come under one UAN. Therefore, it is easy to access all Member IDs.
  •  Transfer of EPF amount from the old Member ID to the current one can be easily done online with the help of the UAN.
  • The overall employer involvement in the PF process decreases, making things easier for both employers and employees.
  • It makes it a lot easier to transfer the entire PF account from one place to another, as all that takes is the UAN number and online verification.
  • Easy SMS updates ensure that employees can now stay updated about whatever is happening in their PF accounts.
  • This system also makes it easier for the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation to keep track of the changes in the jobs of their members.
  • Since all the accounts and dealings are done online after proper KYC verification, the entire process is more reliable and transparent.

UAN Allotment Process

  1. The EPFO allocates a UAN to every employee and individual who has a PF account in their name. 
  2. The UAN and all the associated details once allowed, must be downloaded and provided to the employer.
  3. These details are further circulated to all the employees as and when required.
  4. To check details regarding the UAN and its allotment, employers and employees can both rely on the EPFO web portal.
  5. To register the UAN once it is allotted, the individual must go to the EPF Member Portal.
  6. From the homepage, they must go to the Activate UAN tab
  7. Following this, a web page pops up asking for details such as number, UAN ID, Aadhaar and so on. 
  8. Provide all the details necessary and then click on the Get Pin option.
  9. You will now receive an OTP on your registered mobile number.
  10. Use this OTP to verify your account and create your login credentials.

Activating The UAN Number

Once the individual has a UAN and login credentials, they must do the following to activate their UAN.

  1. First, visit the official EPFO web portal (Govt website).
  2. From the homepage, go to Services>>Employees>>Online Services>>Member UAN
  3. You will be redirected to a page that asks for some details pertaining to your UAN.
  4. Fill in all the details, enter the CAPTCHA on the screen and then click on Get Pin.
  5. You will now receive a PIN on your registered mobile number.
  6. Once you get the PIN, click on Agree and then enter the PIN you just received.
  7. This will provide you with a password that will then help you access the portal whenever required.

Transferring EPF Accounts Using UAN

  1. First and foremost, the PF eligibility needs to be checked to make sure that all the records regarding past and current employers are updated on the portal.
  2. Next, in case the individual does not have a DSC, they must procure one.
  3. If they have a DSC, they must upload the digital signature certificate online onto the portal.
  4. Also, individuals can only apply for a transfer if they are registered on the portal. Hence, first, they must make sure they have activated their account and have valid credentials for the same.
  5. If they have the credentials, they must log in to their account and select the option which comes under PF Transfer.
  6. Next, the individual must provide all the details asked in the three-part form and fill it out completely.
  7. Once this is done, they must choose their attesting authority as well as their member ID.
  8. Next, click on the Get OTP option.
  9. The portal will then send a PIN to your registered mobile number.
  10. Enter this PIN into the system to complete your application.
  11. When the application is successfully received, you will receive an acknowledgment number that may be used for future references.
  12. Take a printout of the transfer form that accompanies this, and submit it to your current employer to have your PF shifted.

UAN Helpdesk

On the website of EPFO, a separate helpdesk is there. You can note 2 broad sections – Help and Claim. If you have queries related to EPF office locations, UAN, Services, Grievances, etc click on the Help, and in case of any query associated with the Composite Claim form (Aadhar), etc, click on Claim. A member can access this help desk 24X7 to get their queries resolved. 


It is very important for salaried employees to be well-informed and aware of how retirement benefits work as it is something that has been implemented with a specific purpose and vision in mind. Knowing how UAN and other related matters work can help the employee make long-term plans,  including life post-retirement. So asking a legal expert or a professional who has been trained and educated in these matters can be of great advantage to the employee. If you have any queries or require help to obtain a UAN, then get in touch with us so that our team of experts can help you with your requirements.

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