By Muhammad Atef | June 11, 2021

Relative passed away during Covid? Here’s what you need to do with their Aadhaar, PAN, Voter ID and passport

Relative passed away during Covid? Here's what you need to do with their Aadhaar, PAN, Voter ID and passport

Relative passed away during Covid? Here’s what you need to do with their Aadhaar, PAN, Voter ID and passport&nbsp

Key Highlights

  • For the surrender of a dead person’s PAN Card, there is no online method

  • There is no provision to even update information about a holder’s death in the Aadhaar database

  • If a voter dies, his voter registration is canceled. In order to delete the name from the voter’s list, one has to submit Form 7

New Delhi: Covid-19 has claimed thousands of lives across the country and the deadly virus is still wreaking havoc across the world. People have lost friends, family and more amid this pandemic. During such challenging times when people are losing their loved ones, not many people know what to do with the deceased person’s official documents and government IDs such as PAN card, Aadhaar Card, VoterID card, passport etc.

If you have lost a relative recently, are you aware as to how long one can keep such documents or IDs of the deceased or if there is any regulation about surrendering these documents to the institutions governing and issuing them?

Here’s what you need to know about what to do with PAN, Aadhaar, passport etc. of someone who has passed away:

Aadhaar: Aadhaar card is one of the most important documents in the country. It serves as proof of identity and proof of address. It is mandatory to quote Aadhaar number or provide copy of the same in various places such as when availing LPG subsidy, scholarship benefits from the government, in case of EPF accounts, filing ITR etc.

Since Aadhaar, by its nature, is meant to be a unique identification number, the number continues to exist even after the demise of the holder. At the moment, the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), the body governing Aadhaar, is not linked with death registries across states which means that Aadhaar is not automatically updated to reflect the demise of the holder. 

Aadhaar is also not mandatory for registration of death or procuring a death certificate. This is why it is important for family members to ensure that the Aadhaar card of the deceased is not misused. While UIDAI does not have any process of deactivating or cancelling the Aadhaar card of the deceased person, one can lock biometric credentials of the deceased person’s credentials through the mAadhaar app or UIDAI website. This will help prevent misuse of biometric authentication of the deceased person.

PAN: Permanent Account Number card or PAN card is one of the most important financial documents. It is a mandatory record for various purposes such as bank accounts, demat accounts, filing of income tax return (ITR) of the deceased. Even after a person has passed, the PAN must be retained till all such accounts, where quoting the PAN is mandatory, are closed. In case of filing ITRs, the PAN must be held till the tax return has been filed and processed by the I-T department.

Note that the tax department can re-open assessments up to 4 years including the current assessment years. Once all tasks related to closing of bank accounts, demat accounts income tax returns etc. have been taken care of, the representative or the legal heir can surrender the PAN of the deceased person to the income tax department. To do so, one needs to write an application to the assessing officer (AO), under whose jurisdiction the PAN is registered, requesting surrender.

The letter should contain reasons for surrendering (i.e., death of the holder), name, PAN and date of birth of deceased, along with a copy of the death certificate. Note that surrendering PAN of the deceased is not mandatory meaning there is no penalty if a deceased person’s PAN is not surrendered. You may retain it in case you feel that it may be required as a

proof for any purpose later on. If you feel there is no need for it and feel that it can be misused, you can surrender it to the tax department

Voter ID card: Unlike PAN and Aadhaar, there is a provision under Registration of Electors Rules, 1960, for cancellation of voter card upon demise. If your relative has passed away, their legal heir is required to visit the local election office. Form no. 7 under the Electoral Rules, has to be filled and submitted along with death certificate for cancellation of a person’s name from voters list on account of death.

Passport: Like Aadhaar and PAN card, there is no provision for surrender or cancellation upon demise for the passport as well. There is also no procedure for intimating the requisite authorities. However, once the passport has expired, it becomes invalid by default. As per experts, it is wise to retain this document till it is valid as it may come in handy as proof in unforeseen situations later.

Driving License: While there is no provision for surrender or cancellation of a driver’s license of the deceased,  each state governs the issue, suspension and cancellation of driver’s license separately which is why it is advisable to confirm the state-specific regulations in this respect before doing anything. You can visit the concerned RTO office for the cancellation of the same. You may also confirm the state-specific process of transferring a vehicle registered in the deceased’s name to someone else’s name.

It is worth adding that keep all the documents in a safe place so that they can not be misused by scammers, fraudsters and other miscreants for something that can get you in trouble later.

Source link