ECR stands for Electronic Challan cum Return. It is an electronic monthly return to be uploaded by employers through the Employer EPF portal. The return will have the memberwise details of the wages and contributions including basic details for the new and existing members (members who have joined or have left service in the wage month for which the return is uploaded).

The approval of uploaded ECR will result in the generation of a Challan using which the employer has to remit the dues through online payment. Then upload of ECR each month will relieve the employers from filing any paper return and also the various monthly and annual returns.

Step by Step process for ECR filing as follows:

Step-1: Login into Unified EPFO portal and use your ECR portal credentials.

ECR Portal Login Pge

Step 2: Now go to ECR/Return Filing option in the menu bar under tab Payments to upload ECR text file.

Employer ECR Home Page

Step 3: Now in new page click on ECR upload.

ECR/Returning Filing Page

In the new page click on ECR File Upload and read all “IMPORTANT NOTE” and ECR Help File. Before upload ECR text file we need to create it.

Steps to Create Text File

First, open the ECR file excel format and fill all the details.

ECR Excel Format

Now, go to save as and choose CSV(Comma Delimited) under save as type and save the file.

Excel Save as page

Once, the file is successfully saved as CSV, go to the destination folder and open it with notepad. Now delete headings from notepad & one blank space from end of the file.

ECR File consists of 11 Fields. Here, all the commas (,) have to change in to (#~#). Now click Ctrl+h in notepad and place comma (,) in Find what & hash tilde hash (#~#) in Replace with and click on Replace all. If all commas (,) changed in to hash tilde hash (#~#) save file as text.

Download ECR file format

Step 4: Now select wage month, salary disbursement date and upload EPF ECR text file. Then, select the remaining fields like File Type (Select ECR), Contribution Rate either 12% or 10%, (Default value is 12%), add comment, and click on Upload Button:

ECR Upload Page

Step 5: After successful upload of ECR file, we will get the following message on screen that “File validation successful, File processing is in progress and may take more time, please revisit after some time”. Just ignore this message and refresh your page, the message will disappear automatically.

File validation successful

Step 6: Click on verify button to generate ECR. Once you will click on verify button you will get a message that You are going to verify the data against the uploaded file and before verifying please download the ECR statement and then verify, click ok on it.

ECR Verification Page

Note: In case the validation of uploaded ECR file fails, you will get an error message.

Step 7: Now, TRRN will be generated for the uploaded ECR (Electronic Challan cum Return) file and Generate ECR summary sheet by clicking on ‘Prepare Challan’ button

Prepare Challan Page

Step 8: Here, please enter Admin/Inspection Charges for A/c No.2. Also, you can EDIT EDLI Contribution for A/c No.21. Also fill “Employer Details” then click on “Generate Challan” Button.

Generate Challan Page

Also Read: PF Admin Charges – A Detailed Explanation

Step 9: Now, the following screen will appear. At this stage also, you can EDIT the challan, if required. Click on “Finalize” button after verifying the challan amount. Once Finalized You can download Ack file and Receipt file from the “In-Process Challan List”.

Step 10: Now, you can go ahead and make the payment.  Click on “Pay” button to make the payment.

Please select “Online” and select your Bank from the list of banks under “Select Bank”, then Click on “Continue”. Then, you will get Payment Gateway for further process.

Common Errors  While Uploading ECR File In Unified Portal EPF

ECR Validation Failed : This error occurs during upload of ECR file in PF portal. When there are errors in your ECR text file then ECR upload generally fails. The failed ECRs are available in Draft ECRs. Employer can view errors by downloading the error file. Based on the errors we need to correct the ECR text file and upload PF ECR file again in EPF unified Portal.

ECR Verification Failed : This is an error generally after successful upload of ECR file in EPF portal. Most of the time this error happens due to website server problem. When this error appears then try 3-4 times by clicking on the verify button beside your ECR file.

Still if it shows the error then reject the ECR and upload new ECR file, this will solve the problem of  ECR verification fail.

Important points to note regarding the new ECR portal are:

1. It is possible to pay the monthly ECR and arrears as well but through separate files and the file formats for both are different.

2. The uploaded ECR will not lapse if payment is not made. You can make the payment after uploading the same through the online payment link. However for the delay beyond the due date the applicable rules on Damages and Interest will apply.

This ends our post. Let us know your opinion by commenting below.

  1. Dear Team,

    Thank you for this Article. Was really helpful in completing the process.

    Would appreciate if you can help me with another issue. We had initiated payment against the challan. However the process did not complete & it is showing as awaiting payment.

    How to overcome this issue.

    Many Thanks

  2. Successfully generated the ECR challan at the first go. All credits to your post. Crisp and Clear indeed.
    Many Thanks

  3. Hi,
    The content uploaded is very precise and helpful. Thanks a ton as it helped me.


    1. Hellow,

      We would like to firstly thank you and we appreciate your interest in our content.


  4. I think this is among the most vital info for me. And i am glad reading your article. But want to remark on some general things, The website style is ideal, the articles is really nice : D. Good job, cheers

  5. If I’ve to submit supplementary ECR of month, which I’d already created and paid, of few more employees, what is procedures

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