In today’s digital world, we can access a wealth of information at the click of a button. You can invest in your retirement and check your NPS balance from the comfort of your home. But what happens when you can no longer operate your account after logging in? If this happens, your NPS account might be frozen. Don’t worry! There’s no need to panic. Here’s our detailed guide on how you can unfreeze an NPS account.
How Do I Know If My Account Is Frozen?
Before you try to unfreeze your account, you have to make sure it’s actually inactive or frozen. Typically, you will get an error message stating you are no longer eligible to contribute to the account. As an NPS subscriber, you will receive an SMS letting you know your account could get frozen within 30 days if you do not take the necessary action. Once the account status changes from active to frozen, you will receive another SMS or e-mail. If you’re sure you haven’t received any intimation or warning, it’s likely one is on its way to you.
Why Is My Account Frozen?
The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) freezes NPS accounts for only one reason – not meeting the minimum annual contribution. You must invest at least Rs. 1,000 into your Tier 1 NPS account each year. You must also invest Rs. 250 into your Tier 2 account if you have one. If you fail to meet your investment obligation for your Tier 1 account and it gets frozen, your Tier 2 account also becomes inactive.
In a few circumstances, your NPS account may get frozen if you haven’t submitted the required documents or your KYC verification is still pending.
How to Unfreeze NPS Account?
You must unfreeze your NPS account quickly to keep your retirement planning on track. Here’s how you can unfreeze an NPS account.
By Making the Minimum Contribution Online
Visit the eNPS portal and click the Contribution option on the home page. You must enter your PRAN and date of birth to move to the contribution page. Ensure you make a minimum contribution of Rs. 500 per transaction. The CRA will confirm the payment via e-mail and unfreeze the NPS account. Once completed, you can log into your account and make contributions regularly to enjoy a financially secure retirement.
Making an Offline Contribution
You can reactivate your account offline if you opened the NPS account via a bank or Point of Presence (PoP). The PoP becomes your authorised point of contact, facilitating all your contributions and withdrawals. Visit your nearest PoP to make the required contribution to unfreeze the NPS account. You must submit an NPS Contribution Instruction Slip (NCIS) at the centre along with your Demand Draft (DD) or crossed cheque. The form includes your PRAN and other account details. You can download the form online or pick up a physical one from the PoP. The DD and cheque should be drawn in favour of PoP Collection Amount – NPS Trust. Once processed, the amount gets transferred to the account registered with the PRAN mentioned on the NCIS.
Dealing with KYC Rejection
Your NPS account could get frozen because of KYC rejection. If you’re dealing with this, you must follow these steps to unfreeze your NPS account:
- Get a hard copy of the registration form, attach your picture and sign it.
- Approach the nearest PoP, per the address provided in the form, for physical verification. Your address, identity and PAN details will get verified here.
- Get the registration form completed, signed and stamped by the PoP official. Ensure the form includes the employee’s ID.
- After completing the verification, submit the form at the PoP.
Once your details are updated in the CRA system, your PRAN gets activated. You will receive an update via e-mail, following which you can start contributing towards your future.
Once you understand the process, it becomes easy to unfreeze NPS accounts. But, we believe that prevention is better than cure. Remember to update your details and contribute as required to avoid your account becoming inactive or frozen.