THE Social Security System (SSS) announced last Monday it conducted simultaneous Run After Contribution Evaders, or “Race,” operations in 114 selected areas around the country last April 28 to call on non-compliant employers to settle their various contribution delinquencies.
“This is part of the Labor Day activities [that] SSS facilitated to promote the welfare of more than 13,000 Filipino workers after issuing written notices to their employers for failure to remit their SSS contributions,” read a statement from the SSS.
SSS President and CEO Rolando L. Macasaet was quoted in a statement as saying that 923 business employers across the country, including those unregistered, received show cause orders for incurring over P396.9-million worth of unpaid contributions and penalties, affecting the SSS benefits of 13,524 employees.
“We recognize the valuable contributions of Filipino workers to nation-building. They serve as the backbone of our economy and play a vital role as we move toward progress. Unfortunately, some employers overlooked workers’ key role in the economy and neglect remitting their social security contributions,” Macasaet said.
Of the 923 delinquent employers, 318 operate in Luzon with a total delinquency of P109.8 million affecting 3,344 employees. Mindanao came in second with 316 employers with a total delinquency of P69.2 million, affecting 3,669 employees. The National Capital Region (NCR) ranked third with 231 employers amounting a total delinquency of P183.9 million involving 4,844 employees and Visayas with 58 employers with a total delinquency of P34.0 million affecting 1,667 employees.
Majority of the employers visited by SSS are engaged in the following: 96 in restaurant industry, 45 in retail selling, 31 in construction and supplies, 31 in management consultancy activities, 19 in hotel and resort industry, 18 in school institutions, 17 in hardware industry, 15 in food house industry, 12 in education services and 12 in printing services.
Macasaet said that 59 percent of the employers failed to remit monthly contributions, 21.5 percent have gaps in paying the monthly contributions and 10.5 percent are about non-registration. The remaining 13.7 percent are those employers served with written notice for non-production of records, non-reporting of employees, underpayment of contributions and under-reporting of their employees.
“If employers neglect their duties to remit the monthly contributions of their workers, they are depriving their employees of the rightful SSS benefits they deserve,” Macasaet said. “A member’s monthly contributions serve as the basis to qualify for SSS benefits. And if their contribution records are not updated, they will not be entitled to claim SSS benefits or apply for loan programs.”
In a news briefing in Binondo, SSS Vice President for Operations Legal Services Division I Renato Jacinto S. Cuisia appealed to employers to religiously remit the monthly contributions of their employees.
Under Republic Act 11199 (Social Security Act of 2018), employers have the legal obligation to report their employees to SSS and remit the corresponding monthly contributions of their workers.
CUISIA explained that employers who received the written notices are given 15 days to coordinate with their respective servicing SSS Branch Office and settle their contribution delinquencies.
“If they fail to act on it, we will take legal action against erring employers by filing a criminal case against them for violating RA 11199,” the lawyer added.
Under the SS Act, employers who fail to register their employees or have not deducted and remitted their contributions will be penalized with a fine of P5,000 to P20,000 and face imprisonment ranging from six years and one day to 12 years.
Filing cases against delinquent employers follow the SSS mandate of ensuring employers compliance with RA 11199.
Meanwhile, Stanley T. Sy of the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry Inc. (FFCCCII) and Romy Chua of the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI)-Manila expressed their support for the “Race” campaign and in reminding their fellow employers of their legal obligation to their employees.
Also, several members of PCCI-Manila joined SSS officials and employees as they visited 10 employers in Binondo, Manila, that the SSS tagged as “delinquent.”