SSS condonation program enables resumption of members' entitlement to benefits
The proposed measure authorizing the condonation of penalties on delinquent contributions to the Social Security System (SSS) would enable employees of delinquent employers to resume their entitlement to benefits and loans, Senator Richard J. Gordon (Ind.) said today.
Gordon, chairman of the Senate committee on government corporations and public enterprises, said that if an employer fails to pay contributions to the SSS, his employees are the ones who would ultimately suffer because they would be denied of their social security benefits.
"Delinquent contributions may be due to the financial difficulties faced by the employers, but the burden is passed on to the employees who would be denied of their benefits and loan privileges," he said.
"A condonation program would offer reprieve to thousands of employers with financial woes, while enabling their employees to resume their entitlement to benefits and loans," he added.
Gordon's Senate Bill 2454, which was recently approved on second reading, proposes the condonation of penalties on delinquent social security contributions.
He said that collection of delinquent payments through court litigation entails a long and tedious process. But a condonation program will facilitate and hasten the extra-judicial settlement of past due contributions from delinquent employers.
The senator explained that the program would cover all employers who are delinquent in the payment of their contributions including those with cases, involving the collection of contributions and penalties, pending before the Social Security Commission, the courts and prosecutor's office. Also included are employers whose cases were already adjudged but have not yet complied with the judgment..
Under the measure, the employer must submit the corresponding collection list and pay the principal obligation either in full, within a period of 12 months, or in installment, within a period of six months, from the effectivity of the Act.
"This condonation program of contribution penalties is an opportunity to immediately settle contribution delinquencies. It also paves the way for resumption of members' entitlement to benefits and loan privileges," Gordon said.
The SSS has twice implemented condonation programs on penalties for contribution delinquencies in 1987 and 1997. By the end of the second program in 1997, the SSS was able to collect P859-million in delinquent contributions.