The Department of Posts (DoP) has taken it up on themselves to provide a platform where citizens can take control of their finance and plan out their future. Over the last 150 years, the DoP has played an important role in the country’s socio-economic development as well as its communication. The postal network of the DoP is very vast; in fact it is the most widely distributed in the world, with 1, 55,015 Post Offices around India. Other than delivering mails, DoP has many schemes and services that it offers such as life insurance and retail services. It aids in discharging services for citizens such as old age pension payments and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) wage disbursement. Finally, it also offers many schemes that citizens have used over decades and continue to do so.
One of the many Savings Schemes that DoP offer is the Senior Citizen Savings Scheme (SCSS) Account.
Features and Benefits of Senior Citizen Savings Scheme
- Senior Citizen Saving Scheme interest rate per annum is 9.3%. This is payable from the date of deposit; that is 31st March/30th Sept/31st December, in the first round, after which interest will be payable on 31st March, 30th June, 30th Sept and 31st December.
- You can make one deposit in multiples of Rs. 1000, up to the amount of Rs. 15 lakhs.
- To apply for Senior Citizen Savings Scheme, the applicant must be at least 60 years old.
- Applicants between the ages of 55 years and 60 years, who has retired on superannuation/under VRS, can apply for this scheme. However, the account must be opened within one month retirement. Also the receipt of retirement amount should not be more than the retirement benefits.
- 5 years is the Maturity period of this scheme.
- A customer can have more than one account in individual capacity or jointly with their spouse.
- To open an account you can depsot by cash if the amount is less than Rs. 1 lakh. For anything more you will need to write out a cheque.
- If you use cheque to open an account, the date of realization of cheque in Govt. account will be accepted as the date of account opening.
- There is nomination facility available to the customers both when the account is opened and later on.
- It is possible to transfer your account from one post office to another.
- You can open any number of accounts in any post office as long as the rules of maximum investment limit is adhered.
- You can only open a joint account with a spouse. Also the investor will be the first one to deposit in the Joint account.
- You can draw interest through auto credit into savings account standing at same post office. This is possible through PDCs or Money Order.
- In the case of Senior Citizen Savings Scheme accounts, quarterly interest shall be payable on 1st working day of July, October, April and January. Pick any CBS Post Offices for this.
- Premature closure is an option for customers. It is possible after one year but an amount equal to1.5% will be deducted from the deposit. If closed after two year an amount equal to 1% will be deducted.
- Once matured, you have the option of extending the account for another three years. You will have to give the application for this in the prescribed format. If you opt for this, you can close the account at any time after the expiry period of one year of extension and no money will be deducted for doing so.
- If you choose to invest in this scheme, you can get the benefit of Section 80C of the Income Tax Act, 1961 from 1.4.2007.