The Social Security System (SSS) has sued over 7,000 employers over the past five years for failure to report employees for SSS coverage and refusal to remit the monthly contributions of workers, bringing in P1.6 billion in collections from overdue SSS obligations, while 24 were sentenced to jail.
Atty. Voltaire P. Agas, SSS Chief Legal Counsel and Senior Vice President of Legal Services Division, said the SSS has charged a total of 7,072 employers since 2010, of which 5,452 or 77 percent have settled their overdue contributions and penalties by paying in full, by installment, or thru “dacion en pago” or payment in kind.
“The 24 employers convicted by the court were ordered to serve jail terms of up to 12 years. These convictions should serve as a reminder that the SSS is committed to running after erring employers. As much as they have a business to operate, they also have an obligation to fulfill their duties under the Social Security law,” said Agas.
Civil liabilities that consist of unpaid contributions, penalties and fines from the 24 court convictions amounted to P24.32 million. Nearly eight out of every 10 employers sued by SSS have agreed to an out-of-court settlement that allows them to pay their delinquencies in cash or thru property.
“Instead of enduring long and tedious litigations, SSS and employers can agree to a settlement that ensures payment of the delinquency through various means in line with existing SSS policies. This benefits the SSS, the employers, as well as the employees, since no party aims to force companies into bankruptcy, shut down their operations and leave the workers jobless,” said Agas.
Under the SSS charter, employers must report their new employees to the SSS within 30 days from start of employment and remit the correct amount of SSS contributions every month on time to avoid a three percent monthly penalty.
Agas called on employees to file a complaint if their employer is found delinquent in its SSS obligations at the nearest SSS branch, and to present proof of employment such as company IDs and payslips which the SSS can use in investigating the case.
“While our account officers and lawyers have been working hard to ensure employers’ SSS compliance, we also urge members to monitor their own SSS contributions and to report to us at the earliest possible opportunity if there are any non-remittances or under-remittances done by their employers,” he added.
For easier and more convenient monitoring of their SSS payments, members and employers must register and create an account in the SSS Website (www.sss.gov.ph). Upon successful registration, they can view their posted contributions and other membership records via the Online Inquiry System that can be accessed from the My.SSS portal of the SSS Website.