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Age Relaxation for Senior Citizens’ Saving Scheme (SCSS)

As normal Indians we think that Senior Citizens’ Saving Scheme is applicable only for citizens above 60 years but govt has relaxed certain conditions when the age condition has been relaxed to give the benefit to retirees.

Just to recap we know that Senior Citizens’ Saving Scheme is a savings product available to only senior citizens of age 60 years or above on the date of opening the account. Proof of age and a photograph of account holder are required.

Conditions when Age is Relaxed for Senior Citizens’ Saving Scheme

  • The age limit is reduced to 55 years in case of an individual retiring on superannuation or otherwise, or under VRS or special VRS, provided the account is opened within one month of date of receipt of retirement benefits. 
  • The retired personnel of Defence Services, excluding Civilian Defence Employees, shall be eligible irrespective of age limit. 
Senior Citizens’ Saving Scheme account can be opened at any post office and a branch of any bank authorized to do so. The scheme can be held in individual capacity or jointly with the spouse. The age restrictions apply only to the first holder. NRIs, PIOs and HUF are not eligible to invest in this scheme.

The term for the scheme is 5 years. A one-time extension of three years is allowed, if applied within one year of its maturity. Maximum limit of investment is Rs. 15 lakhs. However, in case of retirees before the age of 60 years the limit is restricted to retirement benefits or Rs. 15 Lakhs, whichever is less.

An investor can open more than one account subject to the condition, that amount in all accounts taken together does not at any point of time exceed Rs. 15 Lakhs. The deposit can be made in cash if the amount is less than Rs. 1 lakh, or cheques or demand draft.

The interest rate applicable on the scheme for 2014-15 is 9.2% p.a. payable quarterly. The benefit of section 80C is available on investment but interest is fully taxable.

Premature closure is allowed after expiry of one year subject to following conditions:

  • After expiry of 1 year but before 2 years, 1.50 % of deposit shall be deducted.
  • After expiry of 2 years, 1% of the deposit shall be deducted.

No deduction is made in case of closure of account due to the death of the account holder.
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