False Claims Made for Early Withdrawal of MPF Benefits is a Criminal Offense in Hong Kong

January 19, 20178:20 am1578 views

The Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority (MPFA) reminds members of Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes (MPF) and Occupational Retirement Schemes (ORSO schemes), to not make false claims for early withdrawal of MPF benefits.

A member of an ORSO scheme had earlier been convicted under the Crimes Ordinance for making a false statement in a document given to his ORSO trustee to apply for early withdrawal of his minimum MPF benefits (MMBs). He was sentenced to immediate imprisonment of three weeks in November 2016.

In his application to his ORSO trustee in February 2016 for early withdrawal of MMBs on the ground of permanent departure from Hong Kong, the member declared that he had never made any such previous claim.

However, according to the MPFA’s records, the member had withdrawn his MPF benefits on the same ground in 2015. The MPFA therefore referred the case to the police for further investigation.

See: Growing Dissatisfaction among MPF Providers in Hong Kong

This is the first case of an ORSO scheme member sentenced to imprisonment for making a false statement to apply for early withdrawal of MMBs.

According to existing legislation, MPF or ORSO scheme members who apply for early withdrawal of their MPF or MMBs on the ground of permanent departure from Hong Kong have to make a statutory declaration that they have not been previously paid any MPF benefits or MMBs on the same ground.

It is an offence for an MPF or ORSO scheme member to make a false claim and may result in imprisonment or a fine upon conviction.

In 2015-16, two ORSO scheme members were convicted for making false statements; one was sentenced to 80 hours of community service and the other was fined $4,000.

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Image credit: expats.hk

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