Covid-19 outbreak: Update insurance, tax and KYCs amid lockdown 4.0

Start off by completing your tax-saving activities for the financial year 2019-20
From the Ministry of Home Affairs guidelines, it appears that Lockdown 4.0 will be a more relaxed regime. Offices will reopen and most commercial activities will be permitted (except in containment zones, and barring a few activities prohibited throughout the country). However, the government could be forced to clampdown once again if the number of infections soars.

You should, therefore, use this reprieve to complete some of the essential personal finance tasks you may have left pending due to the lockdown. During this period, endeavour to set yourself up in a manner that you are able to accomplish more of these tasks online in future.

Start off by completing your tax-saving activities for the financial year 2019-20, if you have not done so. “The government has extended the date for making Section 80C tax investments for 2019-20 till June 30. 

Visit your bank and make the investments. Also, obtain any paperwork related to these tax deductions that you will require,” says Archit Gupta, founder and CEO, ClearTax. If you have made a donation, obtain a receipt for it that bears the donee’s name and PAN number.  

It is also time to choose your tax regime for 2020-21 from the two options now available. Also, people who have engaged in share transactions or have significant income from other sources should prepare to pay advance tax by June 15.

 

 
To tide over the ongoing crisis, the government has allowed employees to make a partial withdrawal from Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF). They can withdraw up to three months of basic wages and dearness allowance, or up to 75 per cent of the amount in their EPF account, whichever is less. Many employees could be encountering problems in making the withdrawal.

“When the employer-updated information about the employee does not match with the latter's Aadhaar details, his Aadhaar will not get linked to his EPF account and his KYC will also not be approved,” says Prashant Singh, business head, compliance and payroll outsourcing, TeamLease Services. Also, the employer may not approve the KYC documents submitted for availing the withdrawal benefits. The EPFO could reject the employee’s online withdrawal application. In all such cases, turn to the HR Department in your office for support.
Next, turn your attention to your insurance needs. The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) have extended the premium payment date till May 31, 2020, for life policies that were up for renewal in March. “With offices being reopened in non-containment zones, customers who are not digitally savvy can pay their renewals at the branches,” says Parag Raja, managing director and CEO, Bharti AXA Life Insurance.

Those who do not have health insurance, or have an insufficient amount, should purchase it right away. 

“Treatment of Covid-19 can be expensive. With the onset of the monsoon, the incidence of infectious diseases may rise,” says Ankit Agrawal, CEO & co-founder, Insurance Dekho. (Health policies can be purchased online as well, though digitally non-savvy people may find the task difficult.) Similarly, make sure your motor policy is renewed on time.

Finally, senior citizens and all others who still don’t have a debit card, or whose net banking is not operational, should visit their bank branch and acquire these facilities. “Senior citizens should also learn to operate net banking and should learn about security protocols from the youngsters in their family,” says Malhar Majumder, founding partner, Positive Vibes Consulting.


Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel