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PIA Press Release

SSS to condone unpaid premium penalty of employers

by Lito Dar

Baguio City (16 January) -- In an effort to provide assistance to economically affected companies or employers and increase the collection of the Social Security System(SSS), President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo signed last week Republic Act 9903 which condones penalties on delinquent remittances of premium contributions to SSS.

With the condonation law, employers could now pay their outstanding delinquent accounts with SSS minus the penalty, or through an installment proposal payable within 48 months at an annual interest of only three percent, after paying upfront a down payment equivalent to five percent of the total contribution delinquency

"Malaking tulong ito sa mga employer, at inaantay na lang namin ang Implementing Rules and Regulations) bago ito ipatupad," SSS AVP for Luzon North Luis Olais said.

Olais bared that there are 357 employers throughout the North Luzon cluster, including 13 in Baguio City, that have current cases of delinquent accounts with SSS.

Citing as an example a big mining firm in Benguet which has almost P81million in unpaid accounts with SSS, with the condonation act, "taking away about P35 million in penalties from their delinquent account, the said company will now only need to pay about P46 Million," Olais said.

This would also be big help to the aggrieved employees because once the company involve settle their unpaid accounts, they could now easily avail of the numerous SSS benefits, due to them under the law.

Meanwhile, Olais bared that the SSS Luzon North cluster posted a shortfall on its 2009 target collection mainly due to the global economic crisis and the recent typhoons that hit the country.

According to Olais, out of the P2.2 Billion target, their collection from January to November of 2009 registered only about P1.8 Billion. Olais though stressed that their collection still covers the benefits and claims needed by their members.

"In the first semester of 2009 we have about P36 Billion in collection and we have released almost P35 Billion (in benefits and claims) to our members," Olais said.

Olais also announced that SSS is increasing the number of their accredited collection outlets by expanding their partnerships with different banks (including rural banks), Bayad Centers, OFW remittance centers and even through cooperatives.

To further expedite the needed services for members, SSS is also partnering with the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) and PAGIBIG for a Unified Multi-Purpose ID system.

Olais also stressed that the SSS is continuously working on improving their services for their (present) 30 million members nationwide. Improving collection is one way of assuring better services for SSS members, Olais though also expressed optimism of a better collection this year, as there is a projection of a better global economic situation this 2010 compared to 2009. (PIA) [top]

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