SSS urges members to download SSS app

Aileen Cerrudo   •   November 18, 2019   •   280

The Social Security System (SSS) urges its members to download the SSS mobile app to improve the ease of doing business with the agency.

The mobile app, according to the SSS, would also reduce long queues at SSS branches.

“With the SSS Mobile App, members can easily transact with the SSS anytime and anywhere through their smartphones or tablets instead of visiting the nearest SSS branch,” SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio said.

Through the SSS mobile app, members can view their contributions record, membership information, location of SSS branches, and status of their benefit claim, salary loan and loan balance.

Members can also update contact information, register at My.SSS, submit their salary loan application and maternity notification and generate and edit the Payment Reference Numbers.

“We are encouraging our members and stakeholders to use SSS online platforms as we transform our services into future-ready operations,” Ignacio said.

The SSS mobile app can be downloaded at the Google Play Store, Apple App Store, and Huawei App Gallery.—AAC

SSS opens loan application for members hit by recent Mindanao quakes

Robie de Guzman   •   November 18, 2019

A Filipino villager sits amongst rubble after a quake were felt in Digos City, Philippines, 30 October 2019. At least five people have been killed and around 70 injured, after the earthquake struck the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. EPA-EFE/CERILO EBRANO

MANILA, Philippines – The Social Security System (SSS) on Monday, Nov. 18, will begin accepting applications for calamity loan, advance three-month pension and direct house repair and improvement loan for its members in areas that were recently hit by a string of earthquakes in Mindanao.

SSS president and chief executive officer Aurora Ignacio said over P443 million in calamity loan assistance will be made available to up to 54,000 members in quake-stricken areas in Mindanao.

In a SSS circular dated Nov. 8, the agency said the assistance program covers members and pensioners in areas placed under state of calamity by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC): municipalities of Bansalan and Matanao in Davao del Sur; municipalities of Makilala and Tulunan, and Kidapawan City in North Cotabato.

“It is unfortunate that the series of strong quakes greatly affected their daily living. That’s why we prioritized the immediate approval of granting calamity assistance in order to extend financial help to our members and pensioners in the affected areas,” Ignacio said in a statement.

The loanable amount is equivalent to one-month salary credit (MSC) computed based on the average of the last 12 MSC or the total amount of damages as certified by the member in the application form, (rounded up to the nearest thousand), whichever is lower.

To avail of the calamity loan, the SSS said that members should have a minimum of 36 monthly contributions, six of which should be posted within the last 12 months prior to the month of filing of the application.

They should also be registered in the SSS web registration for billing purposes, have not been granted any final benefit such as total permanent disability or retirement, and have no outstanding balance under the loan restructuring program or calamity loan assistance program.

Members must personally apply for the calamity loan assistance program thru the SSS branches, the agency said.

SSS members who work as overseas Filipino workers (OFW) or seafarers may also apply for the program as long as they have a residence in the quake-hit areas.

“Authorization letter should be issued to their authorized representatives to apply for the calamity loan assistance package on their behalf. Member-applicants should also submit a barangay certification as proof that they are residents of the declared calamity area,” Ignacio said.

SSS members and pensioners may apply for the calamity loan assistance program and the advance three-month pensions, respectively, for three months or until February next year.

The assistance package may be availed until February 17, 2020, except for the direct house repair and improvement loan which is up to one year from the issuance of the circular.

SSS allows pensioners to loan up to P200K

Robie de Guzman   •   October 12, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – In celebration of the Elderly Filipino Week, the Social Security System (SSS) unveiled a new borrowing program for pensioners.

Under the enhanced Pension Loan Program (PLP), the SSS said more than 1.5 million retiree-pensioners may loan up to P200,000.  

SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora Ignacio said on Friday the enhanced guidelines on the PLP, which is pursuant to Social Security Commission (SSC) Resolution No. 429 series of 2019, is aimed to provide adequate financial assistance to qualified retiree pensioners.

“They can now borrow up to 12 times their basic monthly pension plus the additional P1,000 benefit. SSS branches are now accepting PLP applications from qualified retiree-pensioners,” Ignacio said in a statement.

Qualified under the new guidelines are retiree pensioners who are 85 years old and below at the end of the loan repayment term if they have no outstanding loan balance, or benefit overpayment payable to SSS from his monthly pension.

Pensioners must also have no existing advance pension under the SSS calamity package and must be receiving his regular monthly pension for at least one month and has an “active” pension status.

“We want our pensioners to know that we value them as one of our key stakeholders in recognition of their support to SSS during their prime, wherein their monthly contributions were the lifeline of the pension fund then,” Ignacio said.

The enhanced loan program for pensioners grants a higher loanable amount, longer payment terms and wider range for the age qualification.

It also gives borrowers a wider option to choose from their loanable amount.

From the previous minimum loanable amount of twice his basic monthly pension (BMP) plus the P1,000 additional benefit, the pensioner borrower may now loan up to three times, six times, nine times or 12 times of his BMP plus the P1,000 additional benefit.

The repayment term was also adjusted so that borrowers will have the option to pay their loan in six, 12 or 24 months with the first monthly amortization to be due on the second month after the loan is granted.

The SSS said these options were given to discourage pensioners from transacting with loan organizations which charge steep interest rates.

“We hope that more pensioners will be encouraged to avail of this loan as this only incurs an interest rate of 10 percent per annum,” Ignacio said.

The SSS implemented the PLP last September 2018 to prevent the growing incidence of pensioners falling victims to loan sharks and help them with their short-term needs.

So far, the agency has released 59,224 pension loans amounting to P1.4 billion as of September 30, 2019.

Based on SSS data on loan term, 0.8 percent of the pensioner-borrowers preferred the three-month term, 5.88 percent for six months, and 93.32 percent for 12 months as of end-September 2019.

500,000 employees to benefit from SSS program for delinquent employers

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 25, 2019

The Social Security System (SSS) has announced that around 500,000 employees have benefited from the SSS contribution condonation program for delinquent employers.

“We’re very happy that nearly half a million Filipino private workers will soon enjoy the seven benefits being offered by the pension fund as well as its short-term loan privileges as soon as their employers have fully remitted their contributions to SSS,” according to SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio.

The SSS had encouraged delinquent employers to remit their employees’ contributions through the Contribution Penalty Condonation Program (CPCP).

The pension fund has so far collected P1.81 billion worth of contributions from the full and initial payments of employers who availed of the CPCP from March 6 to September 6, 2019.

“The total amount of contribution delinquencies collected under the CPCP amounts to P7.88 billion,” Ignacio said.

The SSS, on the other hand, has warned other delinquent employers who did not avail of the CPCP.

“Employers who have received their latest statements of account but did not avail of the CPCP that they will be referred to the SSS Operations Legal Department for filing of case or for serving of Warrants of Distraint, Levy and Garnishment (WDLG),” according to their statement.—AAC

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