New ruling only applies in
divorce cases, says EPF
24/10/2007 The Star
PETALING JAYA: A person who succeeds in claiming the Employees Provident
Fund savings of a spouse in a divorce case will only be able to get the
money when the claimant reaches age 55.
EPF public relations department senior manager Nik Affendi Jaafar said this
condition only applied to claims in divorce cases and not in situations
involving deceased contributors as reported yesterday.
He said there was no change in situations of death, where the savings would
be paid out to the nominated
Nik Affendi said the reason for this condition was to ensure that the
claimant had enough money to live on after retirement.
“It is also important to note here that in these cases, the spouse can only
withdraw his or her other half’s savings if there is a court order,” he
One scenario, he said, was when the court ordered the contributor to pay his
spouse monetary support from his EPF savings.
Several callers to The Star said the new condition was not fair.
One caller, who declined to be named, asked what would happen if a couple
were to divorce and the wife was only 40 and had three mouths to feed.
“She would have to wait for another 15 years before getting any money to
help sustain the family. It is just unfair,” he said.
Another reader said via email: “The EPF is not taking into consideration the
burdens of a single parent.”
Malaysian Indian Business Association president P. Sivakumar said the
condition would prevent the claimant from getting money to invest in order
“In a divorce, families may lose the sole breadwinner. With divorce rates
going up in the country, it makes sense to allow the divorced spouse access
to funds that will help them rebuild their lives.
“This is also an alternative to employment, which may not always be a
suitable option for single mothers who also have to take care of their
children,” he said.
On Monday, the EPF announced several new schemes and introduced several
conditions which it will be introducing in stages.
Meanwhile, MTUC welcomed the EPF’s move to introduce new ways for
contributors to withdraw their savings.
Its president Syed Shahir Syed Mohamud said it was also good to see the fund
emphasise on the need to increase savings for contributors.