SSS urges delinquent employers to settle unpaid premiums until Sept. 1

Marje Pelayo   •   June 27, 2019   •   3666

MANILA, Philippines – The Social Security System (SSS) reminds all delinquent employers to settle unpaid premiums of their employees as soon as possible.

The agency said delinquent employers are given the chance to settle delinquent contributions through the Contribution Penalty Condonation Program which runs only until September 1, 2019.

The penalty condonation for delinquent contributions, as provided by law, provides assistance to employers even household employers to comply with the SSS Act of 2018.

After the given period, employers who will continue to violate the SSS law will be fined with larger penalties or face imprisonment for ignoring their mandatory obligations under the SSS Law.

According to SSS President and CEO Aurora Ignacio, there are still more than 115,000 delinquent employers who should avail of the program for unpaid premiums based on the agency’s established collectibles.

Ignacio said, if all of the said delinquent employers would settle their unpaid obligations, more than 1.4 million employees would be able to maximize their benefits and privileges as members.

Interested employers are urged to submit their letters of intent to the nearest SSS branch as soon as possible.

Those who are willing to pay their contribution delinquency in full should wait for the branch approval.

Meanwhile, those who wish to settle through installment should submit a proposal to the SSS branch.

SSS shifts to digital processing of benefit claims

Robie de Guzman   •   August 28, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The online filing and registration of new employees as members of the Social Security System along with the submission of most forms and benefit claims has been made mandatory as of July 15, the Department of Finance (DOF) said.

In a statement, the DOF said that the move is in compliance with the directive of Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III to shift to digital technology to further improve its services.

In its report to Dominguez, the SSS said the release of loans and benefits to members except for unbanked pensioners, have also been made “cheque-less” through the use of PesoNet and other electronic payment systems as of July this year.

SSS President-CEO Aurora Cruz Ignacio said the state-run firm is targeting to include unbanked pensioners in the “cheque-less” release of benefits by October this year.

She said that since July 15, the submission of the Maternity Notification Form for pregnant female SSS members and the Sickness Notification Form were required by the SSS to be done online.

The filing of Retirement Benefit Claim of members who are at least 65 years old and the application for Unemployment Insurance Benefit (UIB) have also been shifted to digital.

The online filing of the applications for the Calamity Loan and Salary Loan were made mandatory by the SSS a month earlier on June 15, while the filing of the Sickness Benefit Reimbursement Claim of employers was required to be done online as of July 1 this year.

The online enrollment of bank accounts in the My.SSS or SSS online portal is already mandatory for members since June 2020 and for employers starting August 2020.

The SSS said the online enrolment will enable to agency to automatically deposit benefits to the member’s and employer’s enrolled bank account.

Dominguez, who is also the ex-officio chairman of the Social Security Commission (SSC), last year urged the SSS to use digital tools to make it easier for its members to access its services.

The Finance chief said modernizing the SSS’ system will also help cut overhead costs for the pension fund.

He said the SSS needs to be prudent in managing its expenses, given that its task involves taking care of the hard-earned savings of Filipino workers.

“We have to do some serious investments in technology because it will not only save us money, but will also save time for the transacting public. Online transactions are easier and more convenient,” Dominguez said.

The SSS said it has also made mandatory the online filing of applications for the COVID-19 Calamity Loan Assistance Package (CLAP) since the program was launched last June 15.

Online filing of Funeral Benefit Claims for SSS member-claimants was made available starting July and will be mandatory by August, Ignacio said.

Meanwhile, the online filing of the Retirement Benefit Claim of OFW and voluntary members who are 60 to 64 years old has also been made mandatory starting August.

P15.63B calamity loans, P190M unemployment benefits of COVID-hit workers approved in July – SSS

Robie de Guzman   •   August 5, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Social Security System (SSS) has so far approved P15.63 billion in novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) calamity assistance loans, as of July 28, the Department of Finance (DOF) said Tuesday.

The SSS also approved P190.02 million in unemployment insurance benefits from July 1 to 27 this year, to tide over members heavily hit by the pandemic’s economic fallout, the DOF added.

According to SSS President and CEO Aurora Cruz Ignacio, they have approved more than one million applications for its Calamity Loan Assistance Package (CLAP) for the COVID-19 outbreak since its online filing was launched last June 15.

Ignacio said the Calamity Loan for COVID-19 will run for a period of three months starting June until September 14, 2020 only.

Online application for the loan is now mandatory, she added.

The calamity loan for COVID-19 carries a six percent interest per annum commencing on the 4th month with a 27-month term, inclusive of a three-month moratorium.

The SSS said members who are involuntary separated from work can avail of unemployment insurance equivalent to a half of their average monthly salary credit for a maximum of two months.

To qualify, they should have paid the requisite minimum number of monthly contributions for three years, twelve of which should have been made in the eighteen-month period immediately preceding the month of involuntary separation.

SSS offices overcrowded by members to beat June 15 contribution deadline

Marje Pelayo   •   June 11, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Members of the Social Security System (SSS) still have until Monday (June 15) to remit their pending contributions for the months of February, March, and April. 

SSS Branch in Diliman, Quezon City can only accommodate up to 250 individuals in compliance with health protocols, specifically physical distancing measures being imposed by the government amid the prevailing risk of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection. 

The agency seeks understanding from members as it only operates on limited manpower.

“Ang gusto po natin ma-minimize ang overcrowding sa ating mga SSS office, [We want to minimize overcrowding in SSS offices],” said SSS Media Affairs Team Head Cecil Mercado. 

Ang ating workforce ay hindi pa fully implemented so hati-hati kami ng schedule [Our workforce is not yet fully implemented so we divide our schedule],” she added. 

Members have the option to process their transactions online.

But some still opted to go to SSS branches, such as in Diliman, because of specific concerns that cannot be processed online.

Nag-try ako kaya lang dito ako pinapunta kasi dito na raw sa main (office) ang transakyon ng reklamo ko [I tried but I was directed here to transact my complaint],” Manuel Albarido said. 

“Hindi raw kasi sila nag-generate ng mga lumang payment form na ganto so kailangan mo siyang i-direct, ima-manual mo [They do not generate an old payment form so I need to submit it directly and manually], ” noted another member, Carlo Mcdon. 

Hindi ako marunong mag-online [I don’t know how to do it online],” claimed Rosie Amparo.

Aside from remittance of contributions, SSS has also opened its services to those who wish to apply for pension and other benefits. MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

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