ECC reopens payment of P2.52-billion death benefits

Over 28,000 beneficiaries of public-sector workers, who died from work-related accidents from 2006 to 2012, could finally claim their death benefits from the Employees Compensation Commission (ECC).

The ECC issued Board Resolution 18-04-15 allocating P2.52 billion for the “retroactive payment”  of the suspended EC death benefits.

ECC Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis said they opted to temporarily stop the distribution of EC death benefits from 2006 to 2012 due to concerns over the long-term sustainability of the funds of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS).

ECC gets the EC funds for its clients from the private and public sector from the Social Security System (SSS) and GSIS, respectively.

“The fund of the GSIS is now in healthy status so the [ECC] board decided to approve the retroactive payment,” Banawis told the BusinessMirror in a phone interview. She said the GSIS already started informing the affected beneficiaries since last April.

However, the ECC official said interested beneficiaries should have been unmarried or a jobless single during the six-year period to qualify.

Under ECC rules, EC death benefits can only be claimed by surviving legitimate spouses of the covered members, who  did not remarry; and/or dependent children, who are single, unemployed, not over 21 years of age or over 21 years of age so long as they are incapable of self support due to a physical or mental defect.

“If they were unable to meet this qualification, they would forfeit the death benefit,” Banawis said.

ECC is an attached agency of the Department of Labor and Employment that provides assistance to employees who suffered work-related accidents or sickness.

 

 

 

 

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Manuel Cayon has written about Mindanao for several national newspapers for more than two decades, the most part of it on conflict-reporting, and on the political, insurgency and civil rights front. He also scribbles on the religious and human rights issues for the Thailand-based Catholic news agency as well as he strings for several wire agencies. His stint with then TODAY newspaper started his business reporting obtaining in Mindanao, continuing to this day with BusinessMirror. He received citations and awards, including two Biotechnology awards for reporting. He was a fellow of the US International Visitors’ Program Leadership in 2007 on conflict resolution and alternative dispute resolution. He attended college at the Mindanao State University and the Ateneo de Davao University

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