NPS Tier I vs. Tier II: Which Is Right for You?

Imagine a future where your golden years are truly golden, where you can enjoy the fruits of your labor without worrying about financial constraints. While the idea may seem distant, the National Pension Scheme (NPS) offers a solid pathway to this vision.

NPS is a voluntary retirement savings program by the Government that allows individuals to contribute regularly, aiming to ensure financial security in retirement. Both employees and employers can contribute, and upon maturity, a portion is available as a lump sum, with the rest as a monthly pension.

The major objectives are:

:moneybag: Securing retirement income and old-age financial security
:chart_with_upwards_trend: Providing Market-competitive returns

What are the types of NPS accounts?

Tier I and Tier II are the two main account categories under the NPS Scheme. Tier I is the default account while Tier II is a voluntary addition.

Here are the basic differences:

Particulars Tier I Tier II
Minimum initial NPS contribution to open an account INR 500 INR 1000
Minimum Contribution p.a. INR 1000 INR 250
Minimum Amount per Contribution INR 500 INR 250
Withdrawals Restricted Not restricted
Tax Benefits Tax deduction of up to INR 2 lakh p.a. u/s 80C & 80CCD INR 1.5 lakh for Govt. Employees Other employees – NA
Minimum Balance 6000 No minimum amount

The choice between NPS Tier I and Tier II hinges on your financial goals and preferences. If you’re thinking about saving for retirement over the long haul, NPS Tier I is the way to go. It enforces a mandatory lock-in period until age 60, safeguarding your retirement savings. Moreover, it offers tax benefits on contributions.

However, if you have short-term financial goals, need investment flexibility, or seek lower account maintenance charges, NPS Tier II could be the better fit. Tier II has no lock-in period, enabling you to withdraw funds as needed, albeit without tax benefits.

More choices for you?

Moreover, NPS offers several investment options, i.e. equity, government debt, corporate debt, and alternative assets. It also allows users to choose from,

  1. Active Choice: Where users have full control, deciding how their contributions are split across various assets.
  2. Auto Choice: Where investments are age-driven, starting with more equities for younger users and transitioning to safer options as retirement nears.

:bulb: However, max Equity Allocation can be up to 75% of total investments.

In a nutshell, the National Pension Scheme (NPS) is a promising vehicle to turn your retirement dreams into reality, offering financial security, flexibility, and diverse investment options.

Wanna know the tax benefits? Read here!

Still have doubts? Ask away!

1 Like

is NPS tier 1 and 2 : allowed under new tax regime for all ?

Hey @HIREiN,

Under the new tax regime, the deduction in respect of NPS contribution by Employer in Tier I is only allowed, any other deduction is not allowed.

Any contribution made to NPS Tier II is not allowed.

Hope this clarifies!

1 Like

so it is only for the salaried persons !
what about self employed / professionals / businesspersons etc ?

Hey @HIREiN,

A self employed person or professional can only claim deduction u/s 80CCD(1) for his own contribution to NPS. Under New Regime, such deduction is not allowed.

Hope this clarifies!