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CPF withdrawal at 55 years old: What can you do?

How much you can withdraw, and how you can withdraw, funds from your CPF accounts in Singapore.

A couple helps read a Central Provident Fund (CPF) statement letter to an elderly man outside a CPF office in Singapore.
When you turn 65, you start receiving your monthly retirement payouts. But before that, you can actually start withdrawing money from your CPF account when you turn 55. (PHOTO: REUTERS/Edgar Su) (Edgar Su / reuters)

SINGAPORE – The Central Provident Fund (CPF) helps working Singaporeans and Singapore permanent residents set aside funds for retirement.

Contributions to CPF are split into three accounts:

- Ordinary Account (OA) which can be used for housing, insurance, investment, and education.

- Special Account (SA) which is for retirement savings and retirement-related investment.

- MediSave Account (MA) which can be used for healthcare expenses.

When you turn 65, you start receiving your monthly retirement payouts. But before that, you can actually start withdrawing money from your CPF account when you turn 55.

When can you withdraw money from your CPF account?

Here's what happens when you turn 55:

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  • Your Retirement Account (RA) is automatically created, and savings from your SA, followed by OA, are transferred to make up your retirement savings called Full Retirement Sum (FRS). The FRS is adjusted by the CPF Board annually and will depend on the year you turn 55 and is fixed for the rest of your life. For example, for those turning 55 in 2023, the FRS is S$198,800 and will remain at that amount. If you have friends who are a few years younger or older than you, chances are, your FRS will not be the same as theirs.

  • You will be able to make CPF withdrawals from your OA and SA, and in some cases, even your RA. The total sum you're eligible to withdraw at 55 years old depends on a few criteria.

How much can you withdraw from your CPF at 55 and 65?

At 55, for anyone born in 1958 or after, you can withdraw up to S$5,000 unconditionally from your CPF savings. This amount will be withdrawn from your OA and SA.

If you already have your FRS in your RA, you are also eligible to withdraw any remaining savings you have in your OA and SA.

If you own a property with a lease that lasts until you are 95, you have more flexibility and can also withdraw from your RA — as long as you maintain half of your FRS, which essentially makes up your Basic Retirement Sum (BRS). For those turning 55 in 2023, the BRS is S$99,400.

At 65, for anyone born in 1958 or after, you will start receiving your monthly payouts and can withdraw an additional 20 per cent of your retirement savings, excluding the S$5,000 you are eligible to withdraw at 55.

Note that the CPF Board implemented a default online CPF withdrawal limit of S$2,000 a day for those aged 55 and above, effective 30 November 2023. This was introduced as a precaution to prevent fraudulent withdrawals online. This default daily withdrawal limit can be adjusted to any amount online any time, subject to Singpass Face Verification and a 12-hour cooling period to prevent unauthorised adjustments.

How do you withdraw money from your CPF account?

To make a CPF withdrawal, use Singpass to log into your account and access CPF online services. Once logged in, look for "Retirement" under "my cpf". Click "Withdraw for immediate retirement needs" and select "Withdraw savings". From here, you will be asked to enter the withdrawal amount and to select payment details.

Sending funds to a PayNow NRIC-linked bank account is almost instant, while sending funds to other bank accounts may take up to five working days.

Can you withdraw from your CPF account before 55?

You are not allowed to make withdrawals before turning 55. However, you can apply to withdraw your CPF savings earlier if you have a medical condition that reduces your life expectancy, or causes you to be permanently unfit for work or lack mental capacity permanently.

Are CPF withdrawals taxable?

The CPF savings you withdraw at age 55 and above are not taxable. However, any unpaid taxes or MediShield Life premiums may be deducted from your CPF savings.

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