2021 has been a year of unexpected costs, saving challenges, and key financial decisions. Now that our resolutions are in place, it’s well-worth taking a moment to understand a mid-pandemic approach to personal finance.
First things first – taking stock of the year to come. With a few major changes happening to important systems such as ATM charges and provident funds, we’re taking a quick look at upcoming policy updates that will have an effect on how you manage your money.
1. ATM Cash Withdrawal Hike
Although this one was announced as early as last June, the RBI has issued recent reminders regarding an updated Rs. 21 + taxes fee for ATM cash withdrawals, when performed over ATM limits.
The hike last occurred in 2014. Customers will be eligible for three free transactions from other banks in metro cities and five free transactions in non-metro cities.
2. Belated Income Tax Returns
Usually, our Income Tax returns need to be filed by July 31st. This date was pushed to September 30th in 2021 due to COVID-19 difficulties, then pushed once more to December 31st.
While a belated filing is now allowed until the end of March, you may get hit by late-filing fees of Rs 5,000 – so make sure to get this one done with quick. If your income is less than Rs 5 lakh, the penalty is restricted to Rs 1,000.
3. Risk Management Framework (RMF) For Mutual Funds
After reviewing the risk management framework for mutual funds in the Mutual Funds Advisory Committee (MFAC), SEBI has released a revised risk management framework (RMF) list. Apart from updated definitions and requirements for asset management companies, it also suggests recommendations for establishing high standards of service.
If you’ve invested or are looking to invest in mutual funds, this will be of major importance to you. Make sure that your chosen asset manager meets these guidelines.
4. Simplified Norms for SEBI’s Investor Service Requests
Any investment channel depends on ease-of-business – especially service requests regarding updated details, certificate issuance, among others.
To that end, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has put forth a ‘standardized, simplified, and common’ update to help security investors easily handle day-to-day tasks. This also comes with a required link between PAN and Aadhar for investors – make sure to get this done before March 31st, 2022.
5. Provident Fund Nomination Deadline Extended
While provident funds serve as a relatively hands-off, simple way to handle long-term investments, new updates to its system demand immediate attention. Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) earlier announced that all account holders must add the name of a nominee by December 31, 2021 – this deadline has now been lifted.
While a nominee helps manage your account easily in the case of death or disability, leaving your account without one prevents you from availing of ‘various benefits offered by EPFO’.
(Image Sources: Unsplash, SEBI, EPFO)