From cellular services to opening a bank account, the Aadhaar card has become the norm for identity verification. And, it has become increasingly difficult to attain services without a unique identification number. However, keeping in mind the Supreme Court of India’s directives, the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has set a precedent.
If you have not submitted Jeevan Pramaan or Digital Life Certificate and worrying about pension benefits, fret no more.
In a remarkable move on 23rd March, the EPFO issued a circular that pensioners will receive their pension even upon non-submission of the digital life certificate. This comes as a relief for customers who want to opt for EPS or who are in the initial stages of retirement planning.
This is in lieu of another circular issued last year in the month of November. It instructed its officers to make ‘all-out efforts’ to obtain digital life certificates for pensioners. However, it also specified that if the customer failed to submit the digital certificates, the physical form can be accepted in the following two ways:
- Accepting life certificates as a hard copy from policyholders who have previously submitted Aadhaar-linked digital life certificates; or
- Policy Holders, who have not been able to submit the Aadhaar-linked digital life certificates for pensioners due to valid reasons, can personally submit the hard copy of the form. In such a case, pensioners will have to state valid reasons for not submitting their Aadhaar copy.
The circular, issued on the 23rd of March, stated that pensioners should not be deprived of their pension. There were cases where the pensioners with pension plans of EPS had not received their pensions due to unavailability of life certificates.
The EPFO has also asked its officers to scrutinize rejected cases and make provisions for the acceptance of genuine cases.
What is a Digital Life Certificate?
The Digital Life Certificate uses a biometric-enabled feature to provide digital services to customers. The life certificates for pensioners help pension disbursing agencies to automate and regulate the process. It can be delivered directly to these agencies from the issuing authority.
The Life Certificate Repository stores all the digital certificates of customers. These certificates can be accessed by disbursing agencies to identify customers and monitor policy usage. The Digital Life Certificate acts as a unique digital identification certificate for pensioners.
Customers can log in to the website www.jeevanpramaan.gov.in and enjoy services. Pensioners can also visit authorized centres to avail the service.
Anyone can create a Digital Life Certificate with the following requirements:
- Aadhar Document
- Current Mobile Number
- Registering Aadhaar with the bank, post office and any other pension disbursing agency
- Registration of data via a registered biometric device.
- Digital accessories such as Windows Operating System 7.0 or above or a handheld device such as phone/tablet with Android 4.0 or above.
- Internet connection
If you have not yet created a Jeevan Pramaan, the EPFO has suggested the following measures
- Provisions will be made for the creation of Aadhaar card for pensioners who currently don’t have it. The Unique Identification Authority of India has instructed the concerned banks to install Aadhaar centres for enrolling customers. Details regarding banks and other authorized centres are accessible via UIDAI website. Also, you can update your Aadhaar on AegonLife’s website https://www.aegonlife.com/product/update-adhaar
- Pensioners who do not have Aadhaar-related documents will continue to receive a pension on submission of their life certificate as a hard copy.
- It has been recommended that in the absence of fingerprint verification, beneficiaries can get an iris scan at banks.
- As per the regulations of Aadhaar enrolment and update, banks must make special provisions for pensioners who differently-abled, bedridden as well as for senior citizens whose enrolment at the centres is not possible.
- For instances where the fingerprint verification and iris scanning are not possible, such cases should be registered with reasons and relevant details in the Exception Register.
- For individuals with E-Aadhar, the QR codes of their Aadhaar can be downloaded. A QR code contains necessary information of the cardholder. This can be done offline as well.
Advt. no.: IA/Jun 2018/4117