MANILA, Philippines — The Social Security System (SSS) on Friday said it will soon accept online Maternity Benefit Applications (MBA) and Maternity Benefit Reimbursement Applications (MBRA).
In a statement, SSS president and chief executive officer Aurora Ignacio said the online filing of MBA and MBRA through the My.SSS portal on the SSS website would start on May 31.
Ignacio said this is in line with SSS’ scheduled mandatory implementation, which will take effect on September 1.
“As part of our digitalization initiatives, the SSS has now allowed maternity benefit applications to be filed online, along with sickness benefit reimbursement, unemployment, retirement, and funeral. We recognize the current situation of our female members who are high-risk individuals to COVID-19 infection. Their health and safety remain our top priority,” Ignacio said.
The dropbox or over-the-counter filing will still be allowed at the SSS Branch Office/Foreign Representative Office (FRO)/Medical Evaluation Center (MEC) until August 31.
Maternity benefit covers all female self-employed, voluntary, overseas Filipino workers (OFW), non-working spouse members, and female members who are separated from employment and have not yet received any advance payment of maternity benefit from their previous employers. Meanwhile, maternity benefit reimbursement covers all employers, including household employers.
Online filing through the member or employer’s My.SSS account applies to all initial or new claims as well as cases for adjustments, including the following instances:
- Member is qualified as a solo parent;
- With correction on the type of delivery from normal to caesarian delivery or from miscarriage to ectopic pregnancy with operation;
- SSS computation is higher than the employer’s computation;
- Additional posted contributions will increase the benefit amount;
- Correction of the approved number of compensable days from 60 (normal delivery) or 78 (caesarian section delivery) to 105 days; and
- Allocation of leave credits not used due to separation from employment of child’s father or qualified alternate caregiver.
“Required supporting documents corresponding to the type of claim need to be scanned and uploaded by the filer for review by SSS,” the agency said.
For MBRAs, the receipt of the advance payment by an employer must be confirmed/ certified by the female employed member within seven working days from the date of the e-mail notification sent by SSS.
“The member may access the confirmation/ certification facility through the link in the SSS e-mail or the account in My.SSS,” the agency said.
If the member fails to confirm/certify within the prescribed period, the claim will be rejected and the employer will have to re-submit or re-file another MBRA as a new transaction.
For cases wherein the member is separated from employment, absence without leave (AWOL), or deceased before filing the claim, confirmation/certification is no longer required.
The maternity benefit offered by SSS is a cash allowance granted to qualified female members.
To qualify, there must be at least three monthly contributions within the 12-month period immediately preceding the semester of the childbirth, miscarriage, or emergency termination of pregnancy (ETP).
For employed members, they should notify their employers upon learning about their pregnancy. For self-employed, voluntary, and OFW members, they may submit the maternity notification via the My.SSS portal on the SSS website or through the SSS Mobile App.
Members are reminded that only contributions paid prior to the semester of childbirth, miscarriage, or ETP will be considered in determining eligibility for maternity benefits.
The 105-Day Expanded Maternity Leave Law implemented on March 11, 2019 increases the number of compensable days of maternity leave, from the initial 60 days for normal delivery, or 78 days for caesarian section delivery, to 105 days for live childbirth—regardless of the type of delivery. There is also an additional 15 days paid leave if the female worker qualifies as a solo parent.
In case of miscarriage, the entitlement is 60 days of paid maternity leave. The law also granted further consideration to our women by extending maternity leave to every instance of pregnancy, and miscarriage, regardless of frequency, from the previous limit of the first four deliveries or miscarriages.
“We encourage our members and employers to register at My.SSS and enroll their bank accounts in the Disbursement Account Enrollment Module (DAEM) to receive their benefits at the soonest possible time,” Ignacio said.
“The online service offerings are part of our brand campaign through ExpreSSS for faster, easier, and simpler means of transacting with SSS,” she added.