Newsletter-Feb-2016

Payroll and Compliance The Monthly Chronicle - February 2016 Provident Fund interest rate likely to increase to 8.95%

The Employees Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) is considering a proposal to increase the interest rate from 8.75% to 8.95% for the fiscal year 2015-16. The proposal has to be approved by the central board of trustees before it is sent to the Finance Minister for confirmation. Increased PF interest rates would encourage investors to make additional contributions to PF deposits.

EPFO proposes bringing pensioners under UAN network

The Employees Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) is discussing a proposal about bringing in pensioners who are covered by the EPFO into the Universal Account Number (UAN) network. This will allow a one window portal for PF and EPS end-users thus helping them to avoid duplicate registration and maintenance of different user IDs.

Stay Order passed by Kerala High Court on retrospective provision (i.e., 01.04.2014) in the latest amendment to the Payment of Bonus Act, 1965

The Payment of Bonus (Amendment) Act, 2015 was made effective retrospectively from 1st April 2014. A writ petition was filed in this regard before the Hon’ble High Court of Kerala by The United Planters’ Association of Southern India & another (“Petitioners”). On 27th January 2016, it was held by the Kerala HC that this amendment, to the extent that it gives retrospective effect from 1 April 2014, is stayed. The Kerala HC also held that this amendment be implemented from the financial year 2015-16 pending the disposal of the writ petition. This interim order is applicable only for the petitioners.

Provident Fund Guidelines with respect to EPF members working in foreign country

In case an Indian employee who is covered by the Provident Fund Act leaves India for employment, then the following guidelines will be applicable to that employee and his / her employer

*Social Security Agreement with foreign country Covered under **Certificate of Coverage Compliance during foreign deputation YES YES Compliance with EPFO EPFO compliance to continue Compliance with foreign country social security system Exempted from enrolment on production of COC for the duration indicated in the COC. YES NO Compliance with EPFO Employer to report compliance in case any Indian salary is paid or payable during this period. Compliance with foreign country social security system Employee to be governed by host country’s laws. NO NO Compliance with EPFO Employer to report compliance in case any Indian salary is paid or payable for the period. Compliance with foreign country social security system Employee to be governed by host country’s laws.

 

*Social Security Agreement (“SSA”): An international agreement that regulates the procedure of providing social security for citizens of one country who are temporarily or permanently residing in another country.

**Certificate of Coverage (“COC”): This certificate serves as proof that the employee and employer are exempt from the payment of Social Security taxes to the foreign country.

Proposed BEPS

India is planning to introduce the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS), which is a new reporting framework for multinational companies and Indian conglomerates (with operations outside India), in the upcoming Budget.

The BEPS project is an initiative by Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to identify ways of providing standardized tax rules globally and to check tax avoidance. It is a global agreement to check tax avoidance by multinationals. As per the BEPS standards, the Company will have to submit a detailed split of revenues, profit, operations (corresponding economic activity), and taxes paid in each country in which they operate.

All about Home Loan Deduction
  1. Principal and Interest amount can be claimed only when:
    a. Construction is complete and
    b. Possession has been received, by the individual.

  2. Co-owner is the person who has share in the property i.e. rights in the property. A co-owner of property can be co-applicant in Home Loan. A joint applicant in loan can claim the deduction only if he/she is also a co-owner of the property.
  3. Co-applicant or Co-borrower refers to a person who shares equal responsibility towards the repayment of the Home Loan. It is not necessary that co-applicant of Home Loan is co-owner of the property.
  4. The total principal amount paid on a property and allowed as a deduction under the Act will be deemed as income in the year of sale, if the property is sold within 5 years from the date of possession. Accordingly, TDS would be deducted.
  5. If an individual is in possession of more than one house property, the individual can choose the property of his choice as self-occupied. The other property(ies) would be deemed to let out and rental income would be calculated accordingly.
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