Public Provident Fund FAQ


Public Provident Fund FAQ will help to understand every aspect of ppf because it is one of the best options in terms of small saving schemes in India.  It is much preferred since it offers one of the best interest rates as well as it is exempted under Income Tax act.  Here is a complete guide to the most common questions pertaining to Public Provident Fund in India. Below the list of Public Provident Fund FAQ.

Public Provident Fund FAQ

Public Provident Fund FAQ

Question:  What are documents required for opening a PPF Account?

The account opening process for PPF is simple.  You need the following documents for opening your PPF account:

  • Copy of your PAN along with Form 60-61
  • Proof of Residence and ID proof as per Bank’s requirement
  • Passport size photograph
  • Nomination Form
  • Duly filled PPF account opening form (Form A)

Question:  Is PAN number compulsory for opening a PPF account?

No, PAN number is not compulsory for opening of PPF account.

Question:  Can you open a joint PPF account?

No, PPF account can’t be in the name of more than one person.  It should be an individual account.

Question:  Can a Guardian open PPF account in the name of a minor?

Yes, any legal guardian or parents can open a PPF account for a Minor.  In that case, documents of the legal guardian or parents would be required along certificate of birth of the minor. For more information read the article PPF Account for Minor

Public Provident Fund FAQ For Tax Benefits of PPF

Question:  What tax benefits do you get from PPF scheme?

You get an EEE tax benefit from PPF scheme.  That means, the contributions made to your PPF Account, the interest accrued on the PPF account and the maturity proceeds out of the PPF account are all tax exempted under Section 80C or Income Tax.

Question:  What is the maximum deduction you get out of PPF contributions?

The maximum amount you can deposit in your PPF account is Rs 1.5 lakh, which is completely tax free.  Moreover, if you are also contributing to your child’s (minor only), then that contribution too is fully exempted from Income tax.  However, the contributions made towards spouse’s and adult children are not exempted.

Question:  Who can claim tax exemption under 80C?  The account holder or the contributor?

As per the Public Provident Fund FAQ, the person contributing to PPF account will be entitled for tax exemption.  This means, if you are investing to your spouse PPF account, you can claim tax benefits on it, provided that you spouse too is not claiming the same benefit.

Question:  Can you claim tax benefits against your contributions made for your parent’s account?

  1. As per PPF scheme, you can’t claim for tax exemptions for the contributions made towards the account of your parents.

Question:  Can you avail tax benefits under 80C without contributing to PPF account?

Yes, you can claim tax benefits under 80C on the interest and maturity amount even without making yearly contributions.  However, this is only possible from 7th financial year onwards.

As a matter of practice, people make partial withdrawals from their PPF account and then redeposit it to their PPF account to avail tax benefits.

Public Provident Fund FAQ For PPF Investment

Question:  What is the Rate of Interest for Public Provident Funds?

Please check this for current Rate of interest.  As a matter of fact, the interest rates of PPF are revised from time to time.

Question:  Which is better investment option? PPF or NSC?

Both are modes of investment and come with their merits and demerits.  However, if you are looking for a specific and effective mode of investment, PPF is certainly better than NSC investment. For more information read the article Public Provident Fund vs NSC

Question:  What to consider when investing in PPF?

You can start investing in PPF at any stage of your life; however, it is always better to start investing earlier.  Moreover, there are lots of people who wait for the end of the year to invest a lump sum money.  As a matter of fact, you can deposit a maximum of 12 times in your PPS account in any financial year.  It is always good to invest on a monthly basis to have steady contributions to your account.

Question:  Why should you invest in PPF?

  • PPF is considered to be the best debt option available after Provident Fund.
  • The contributions as well as the interest and maturity proceeds are completely exempted from income tax under 80C.
  • PPF is quite a safe investment as it is a completely government backed saving scheme
  • One of the biggest advantages of investing in PPF is that it offers absolute flexibility in terms of investing small sums of money. You can keep investing any amount every month (subject to the minimum and maximum cap) and also have the option of investing in lump sum.
  • PPF offers the highest rate of interest among all other general small saving schemes in India
  • You can continue to invest in PPF even after it matures
  • Loan facility in PPF makes it quite a flexible saving option. You keep investing and your money grows at a steady pace.  However, you can get a loan of half of your money when you require it.  This ensures that your money is there for you when you need it.

Public Provident Fund FAQ For Contributions to PPF Account


Question:  What is the maximum and minimum number of times you can deposit money to your PPF Account?

You can deposit money to your PPF account either on yearly lump sum basis or in terms of monthly installments, which are not required to be equal amount at certain amount.  For example, you can deposit Rs 5,000 to your PPF account in April and then Rs 2,000 in July and so on with irregular amounts.  The minimum number of times you have to deposit money to your account is atleast once and the maximum is 12 times.

Question:  Is atleast one deposit required every year?  If yes, what amount? What if you are not able to?

As per the scheme, you should deposit Rs 500, atleast once in your PPF account.  If you are not able to make any deposit in a given financial year, your account may become inoperative.

Public Provident Fund FAQ For Loans and Withdrawals to PPF Account

Question:  When can you apply for loan or make partial withdrawals against your PPF account?

You can avail loan against your PPF account within 3rd and 6th year of your account.  Moreover, you are eligible to make partial withdrawals from your account effective 7th financial year.  The catch here is that once you become eligible for making withdrawals, you are no more eligible for loans against PPF.

Question:  What is the difference between loans and withdrawals against PPF Account?

When you take a loan against your PPF account, you are entitled to pay interest and repay the loan amount along with interest.  However, withdrawal is a simple withdrawal of certain amount from your account and you are not required to pay it back.

Question:  How can you apply for partial withdrawals or loans against your PPF Account?

To apply for a loan against your PPF account, you need to fill Form D.  To apply for withdrawals against PPF, you need to fill Form C.  Along with the application for loan or withdrawal, you should attach a copy of your PPF passbook.

Question:  How much can you borrow against your PPF Account?

You can ask for a loan up to 25% of your total balance accumulated by the end of 2nd immediate preceding year.

Question:  What is the limit of withdrawal your can make against PPF account?

After your PPF account completes six financial years, you are entitled to make not more than one withdrawal per financial year.  50% of the amount can be withdrawn out of accumulated 4th year amount or 50% of the end preceding financial year, whatever amount is lesser. For more informaion read the article Withdrawal Rules in PPF

Question:  Can PPF account be closed before maturity?

No, PPF account can’t be closed before maturity except in case of death of the account holder.

However, as a matter of exception, premature closure is considered after 5 years of account expiration in cases where functioning of account is causing undue hardship to the contributor.

Public Provident Fund FAQ For Operation of PPF Account

Question:  How is the nomination changed in PPF Account?

Yes, change in nomination is very much possible.  You will have to Fill Form F to change the nomination of your PPF account.

Question:  Is PPF account transferrable from one bank/post office to another?

Yes, transfer of PPF account is very much possible from one bank to another or from one post office to a bank or vice-versa.  Interbank and inter post-offices are also possible. In case of transfer, you need to submit copy of your latest proof of address.

Question:  How to reactivate an inoperative PPF account?

If you cease to deposit the minimum amount, i.e. Rs 500 every year to your PPF account, it becomes inoperative.  However, you can get your inoperative PPF account reactivated by paying the minimum amount for the years you have missed payments.

For example, if you have not paid to your PPF account for the last 3 financial years, you need to pay at least Rs 1,500 to get your PPF account reactivated.

Question:  What if you don’t reactivate your PPF account?

If you don’t reactivate your PPF account, the accumulated balance would continue to grow with specified interest rate.  Once the account matures, the proceeds would be paid to you.  There are just two restrictions if you don’t reactivate your PPF account:

  1. You can apply for premature withdrawals or loans against your PPF account
  2. You can contribute any further to your account before you reactivate it

Question:  In case of death of account holder, can a nominee continue to operate the PPF account?

No, nominees are not allowed to operate PPF account in case of death of the account holder.  The account would be closed after submission of Form G and the proceeds are handed over to the nominee(s), in the ratio specified by account holder.

Question:  What in case of death of account holder where there are no nominations?

In case the balance in the PPF account is less than Rs 1 lakh, the legal heirs of the account holder can claim the money without any proof.  However, if the balance is higher than Rs 1 lakh, the legal heir would need to submit necessary proof of relation along with affidavits to claim the proceeds on the account.

Public Provident Fund FAQ For Post Maturity Operation of PPF Account

Question:  Can a PPF account be continued after its maturity?

Yes, the account holder may choose to continue with the PPF account even after maturity but will have to choose the duration of extension in multiples of 5 years.

Question:  How many extensions are possible after initial maturity of PPF account?

The extension of PPF account has to be in the multiple of 5 years.  Moreover, you can apply any number of times for the extension of your PPF account.

Question:  Can the account holder further invest after initial maturity?

Yes, the account holder can further invest after initial maturity, however, he/she would have to fill form H and opt that in writing.

Question:  By what time can account holder opt for further investment?

After your PPF account has matured, you have one year of time within which you can apply for an extension.

Public Provident Fund PPF FAQ for NRIs

Question:  Are NRIs authorized to open a PPF Account?

No, an NRI (Non Resident Indian) is not authorized to open a PPF account. For more information read the article Public Provident Fund/ PPF for NRIs

Question:  You opened a PPF account when you were a Resident Indian.  However, now you got an NRI status during the course of account and the Account is still to mature.  Can you operate your PPF account?

Yes, you can continue to operate your PPF account and make contributions until the initial maturity of your account.  Any account which was opened by a resident Indian at the time of opening of account is considered a normal PPF account.

Question:  Can an NRI extend the term of PPF Account?

No, NRIs can only operate the account till the initial maturity of the account.  After than, the account needs to be closed.

We hope we have covered enough information regarding PPF Accounts in Public Provident Fund FAQ Article.  For specific information on Public Provident Fund FAQ, you can send us comment.

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