Social Security System (SSS) branches nationwide will open this weekend, September 29 to 30, to accommodate members filing last-minute applications for the agency’s amnesty program on penalties of delinquent loan borrowers.
SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Emilio de Quiros, Jr. said the agency also moved the deadline of the six-month Loan Penalty Condonation Program for Individual Members to Monday, October 1, from the original September 30 cut-off date.
“Members can avail themselves of SSS services related to the condonation program this weekend. They can file their applications for condonation and remit payments at SSS branch tellers from 8 am to 5 pm this Saturday and Sunday,” he said.
The program enables delinquent borrowers to settle their overdue loans without paying the full amount of penalties. Applicants have flocked to SSS offices in the last few weeks of the condonation program despite the pension fund’s early announcements since the start of the year.
Nearly 132,000 members have benefited from the condonation program since it opened for availment last April 2. The penalties written off have amounted to over P976 million so far, while the collectible amount has reached P1.73 billion.
The SSS offers amnesty to members whose deducted loan payments were not remitted by their employers (Situation 1-A); and to borrowers with at least three paid loan amortizations and a minimum of three contributions for the past six months (Situation 2).
Delinquent borrowers filing retirement or total disability claims within the availment period can apply for amnesty under Situation 3. Members covered by Situation 2 can provide receipts as proof of payment of contributions and loan amortizations needed to qualify for the program.
De Quiros urged members to check their loan balance and condonation eligibility by registering at the SSS website (www.sss.gov.ph) or inquiring at the official SSS Facebook page (“Philippine Social Security System”) and SSS call center at 920-6446 to 55, which is open from 7 am until 11 pm on weekdays. “Situation 2 applicants who don’t need to submit supporting documents can apply for condonation through the SSS website as a convenient alternative to personal filing at SSS branches,” he said. “However, those filing online must keep in mind that their payments must still fall within the condonation period, or until October 1, especially if they opt to pay in full,” he added.
The SSS charges a one percent monthly penalty on overdue short-term loans. Depending on the borrower’s situation and chosen mode of payment, the SSS will waive 50 to 100 percent of penalties upon approval of the member’s application for condonation.
While the condonation program ends on October 1, 2012, amnesty will be extended to beneficiaries of members who died with unpaid loans until March 31, 2013.