HR Talk: 10 Questions Answered Re: SSS Involuntary Separation Insurance Program Worth Up to Php 20,000 Max

Today, GMW News Online published this article, creating a ruckus in the HR Field:

GMA News

Source: SSS members who lost jobs to receive up to P20,000 cash benefit, June 9, 2020

When the employees saw the Php 20,000 cash benefit, biglang lumaki ang mata ng mga tao. “Wow, ang laki!!!! Apply tayo!” 

Surprised

After the SBWS’ Php 16,000 (Max of NCR), workers are now super curious on how to avail of this wonderful program that gives them Php 20,000, especially now that so many people are being laid off or have resigned from their positions.

That’s why we are going to talk about this topic.

To be honest, gulat ako by how excited people are re: SSS Unemployment Benefit. Actually, matagal na ang SSS Unemployment Benefit na yan. The unemployment benefit, one of the landmark provisions of Republic Act 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018, is the seventh benefit program of the SSS. Member-applicants may be granted a cash benefit equivalent to half of their average monthly salary credit (AMSC) for a maximum of 2 months.

Here’s 10 Questions Answered on How To Apply for the SSS Unemployment Benefit

How-to-Apply-for-SSS-Unemployment-Benefit-1280x720

1. What is the SSS Unemployment Program?

The Unemployment benefit program is the newest among the benefits being offered by SSS. This program allows qualified SSS members who are involuntarily separated from work to claim for a cash allowance equivalent to two times his average monthly salary credit. Beneficiaries include household employees and overseas Filipino workers.

unemployment

The purpose of the program is very noble, as the money will allow the SSS members some financial liberty during times of unemployment. The program is patterned with similar programs in Europe. The member can use the money:

  1. To find another job after they were involuntarily separated from work.
  2. To take up courses to improve themselves to find a better job.
  3. To use for their everyday needs.

For more details on the SSS Unemployment Benefits, see the Brochure Here.

2. How much Money Can Qualified Applicants Get for the Unemployed Benefit?

The cash grant is worth 50% of the member’s average monthly salary credit (MSC) for two months. See attached for how much you will get:

SSS-Contribution-1

Example, if you earn Php 14,000.00 or the minimum wage — meaning, your company has deposited Php 1,690.00 total per month — the Monthly Salary Credit is Php 14,000. The cash grant is worth 50% of the member’s average monthly salary credit (MSC), so following the table, you will get Php 7,000 per month. The program will last for only two months.

Php 14000

NOTE: If two or more compensable contingencies occurred within the same period, SSS will only pay the highest benefit from the recorded contingencies. They are given one year from the time of their separation to file for their benefit claim.

3. So why did they say the Unemployment Benefit is Php 20,000?

Take a look at the chart again — If you make Php 25,000 and your company deposits Php 2,430.00 per month for your SSS benefits, you get a max Php 20,000 Monthly Salary Credit.

Php 20,000

At 50% of Php 20,000, that’s Php 10,000 per month for two months.

peso-20200415

This is why you will get an Unemployment Benefit of Php 20,000 in total.

4. Who is Qualified for the Unemployment Benefit?

a. The applicant should be a member of SSS. If you’re not even part of SSS, you are NOT qualified. If you are a voluntary contributer, you are NOT qualified.

b. Member-applicant must have paid at least 36 monthly contributions.

IMPORTANT: 12 months of the 36 months should have been paid within the 18-month period prior to the month of involuntary separation.

c. There is an Age Requirement:

a. For everyone else, you must be 60 years old or below at the time of separation.
b. For racehorse jockeys, aged 55 years old and below.
c. For Underground and surface mine workers, age should be 50 years old and below.

d. You can only claim it once every three years from the date of involuntary separation.

e. You did NOT resign voluntarily. That’s why it’s called Involuntary Unemployed. Once you quit, you are NOT eligible for the program.

quitjob

f. You must have been fired due to the following AUTHORIZED causes:

g. You did not get laid off due to Just Causes. If so, you are NOT QUALIFIED for the Involuntary Separation Insurance Pay:

Just Causes

5. How much Total Budget is Allocated to the Involuntary Separation Insurance Program?

The SSS said that Php 178 million worth of benefits were released in 2019 under its unemployment benefit or involuntary separation insurance program, which is one of the key features of Republic Act 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018 which took effect on March 5, 2019.

sss

As of December 2019, there is enough budget. In response to a query by Dominguez, SSS Senior Vice President and Chief Actuary Edgar Cruz said the SSS is ready, at the minimum, to provide P660 million for the unemployment benefits of affected SSS members, and up to P1.2 billion under a worst-case scenario.

The average unemployment benefit that qualified members receive is about P11,000.

Assuming that the 60,000 workers in the worst-case scenario will be dislocated and avail themselves of the benefit, this would amount to around P660 million, Cruz said.

If the computation is based on the maximum cash benefit of P20,000 per applicant, the total amount will reach P1.2 billion, he said.

Cruz said with the current cash position of the SSS at P21 billion, it can well afford to pay unemployment benefits, given that P660 million is just a fraction of the more than P16 billion that SSS paid monthly for members’ pensions in 2019.

6. What are the Chances of Me Being Approved?

Pretty high IF you are qualified.

SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio said that out of 15,151 unemployment benefit applications in 2019, 14,895 were approved (98.31%). This translated to Php 178 million of benefit releases.

7. What are the Requirements to Apply for this Special Benefit?

Workers who are involuntarily separated from work need to secure the DOLE’s Certificate of Separation from Employment/Unemployment from the Department of Labor and Employment to avail of an unemployment insurance.

Applicants are required to submit to any SSS local branch or foreign office:

A. A DOLE-issued certification establishing the nature and date of involuntary separation

You can get them here — The electronic filing facility can be accessed through DOLE-NCR’s official website at https://ncr.dole.gov.ph or at https://tinyurl.com/dolencr-efiling. It takes them ONE WEEK to get back to you.

B. Notice of Termination from the employer or the Affidavit of Termination of Employment.

Here’s a sample of Affidavit ot Termination of Employment:

C. An original and photocopy of one primary ID card or document. If you don’t have a primary ID, any two ID cards/documents, both with signature and at least one with photo. Here’s a list of Primary IDs accepted by SSS:

primary ID

8. How do I get the DOLE Certification of Separation from Employment?

You need to secure the DOLE’s Certificate of Separation from Employment/ Unemployment from DOLE first to avail of an unemployment insurance. It is a primary requisite for the application for payment of unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit of the Social Security System (SSS). You can apply it from the DOLE Field/Provincial Office where the employer is located or where the employee resides.

Applicants must be able to present one (1) valid identification card (ID) and a copy of the Notice of Termination or a duly notarized Affidavit of Termination of Employment.

“For the issuance of this certification, the DOLE will do its best to observe the one day Process Cycle Time. The certification should be duly signed by the Head of the Field/Provincial Offices of the DOLE,” said DOLE-7 Regional Director Salome O. Siaton.

The issuance of the DOLE certification is pursuant to Department Circular No. 01-2019 or the Guidelines on the Issuance of DOLE Certification as a Requirement for Application for Payment of Unemployment Insurance or Involuntary Separation Benefit.

In the case of OFWs, they may file their application at the Philippine Overseas Labor Office where their employer operates or at the DOLE Field/Provincial Office where the OFW resides.

This is the labor advisory re: DOLE certification issuance:

9. How will I receive the Payment?

The benefit will be credited to the savings account under the member’s UMID card enrolled as ATM or Union Bank of Philippines (UBP) Quick Card.

UMID

If the member has no UMID card enrolled as ATM or UBP Quick Card, the member will be instructed by the branch to open or avail of the UBP Quick Card to have their benefit automatically credited to their savings account and can be availed thru UBP Kiosks in selected SSS branches nationwide.

Here’s how to apply for an SSS UMID ID.

10. Why does the SSS need a lot of requirements from me? Magbibigay na ng pera. Pahihirapan ka pa nila!

The toughest thing about living in the Philippines is that you’re already helping out your fellowmen, pero magrereklamo pa sila. Sila pa ang galit.

Look, the SSS Unemployment Benefit is ASSISTANCE given by the SSS to its qualified members. It’s NOT a loan. It’s FREE money that you don’t have to pay back IF YOU ARE QUALIFIED.

Kung hindi ka qualified, then naturally, you cannot avail of the benefit. If you did not have enough contributions, SSS is not obliged to give you a single cent because you’re not even a member of this program. When this happens, huwag nang magalit. Hindi kasalanan ng SSS na hindi kayo naghuhulog ng contributions.

Let this be a valuable lesson to everyone — Always ensure that if you’re employed, to be registered in SSS. Because there’s a lot of benefits you can get from the Social Security System Program which not only includes the Unemployment Benefits but the following:

SSS 1SSS 2

Good luck and please proceed to the nearest SSS branch for any more queries!

Sources: 
DOLE certificate needed for unemployment insurance, October 7, 2019
DOLE Guidelines on unemployment insurance certification out, August 6, 2019

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52 thoughts on “HR Talk: 10 Questions Answered Re: SSS Involuntary Separation Insurance Program Worth Up to Php 20,000 Max

    1. Qualified so long as you were laid off as a result of it. Need the Notice of Termination.

  1. What if po nagclosed ang company due to bankruptcy at pandemic? Are we still going to be qualified?

  2. Questions lng po qualified di po ba kahit wala pa pong 36 months yong nahulog
    Sa Sss? Lay off po kc ako sa work q nitong june 1st lng po. Thank you

    1. Apologies pero kulang po ang hulog ninyo to qualify. Needs 36 hulogs to qualify. Sorry po.

  3. Question po, What if si employer declared no operation (no work no pay) since quarantine started Si employer stagnant lang ang kanyang employees no pay almost for 3 months. and employees decided to voluntarily resigned dahil walang kasiguraduhan kung magoperate pa ang company and they need to survive and look for other jobs.
    Qualified pa rin po ba kung ganito ang situation?

  4. HI! What if the company filed for temporary closure, and the employees are on “floating status” – no work, no pay, will they still be qualified? Thank you!

    1. Not qualified since they are still employed with the company and not permanently terminated. Kailangan po kayong tanggalin.

  5. Hi Tina,

    Let me just add up that not everything you put up here is the current process.In my case, our empoyer sent an email that we are eligble to apply for the SSS unemployment benefits since our project have closed since due to Covid19. I went to DOLE Pamamamarisan in Pasig and was only greeted by the security guard that they won’t entertain walk-in. Fine. Securing certificate is via online. There were posted instructions on how to go online and it is here in this link: http://ncr.dole.gov.ph/default.php?retsamlakygee=1071&resource=55c781238aa2cb40d26efb0450f823c2 then go down and click ‘Request for Certificate of Involuntary Separation for SSS’

    I received email with the details I filled in the form. After 7 seven days, no response or update. I followed up on this email I got when I went there; DOLE PFO and here’s the response.

    Dear xxx.

    May we inform you that your application for Certification of Involuntary Separation has been reviewed and found NOT COMPLIANT with the requirements.

    In particular, the reason for your separation (end of contract) is not among the valid reasons for eligibility for unemployment benefit as listed in SSS Circular no. 2009-011 (attached).

    Sincerely,
    DOLE PAPAMAMARISAN
    ——–

    It was quite surprising so I immediately responded to ask how on to proceed . The reason I put up in the form is ‘redundancy’ and ‘end of contract’ is the file name I used to upload in the form which is the notifcation of the project closure given by my employee. So in this case, what shoudl be the next thing to do? they will just give auto responses and calling DOLE hotline is of no use as the agents handling cal is unfamiliar with the process.

    1. There seems to be a miscommunication. End of contract is not included in the list of reasons for Authorized Causes which qualifies you for Involuntary Unemployment Benefits.

      Kasi, if you got endo’d, you knew that there was an end game for the endo. It’s not Involuntary na. Same with resign. It’s not involuntary either anymore but a voluntary act. That’s why they denied you. Because you really do not qualify.

      The best way to go about this is to move on and not be bitter. Your employer clearly did not read the memo clearly and thought Unemployment Benefits covered all unemployed. It does not. You really have to read the rules. And if you qualify, you will get it.

      Hope this helps and am sorry for you running around and getting requirements when in fact, you never would have been approved. Just find another job and I thank you for asking this question so others can be helped too.

      1. Hi Tina,

        Yes. The “involuntary separation” only seems to appear in nature as we don’t have a choice because they can terminate without us really wanting it as part of the project agreement. Clearly not really helpful on part of the employees especially in this trying times. I’ll definitely can move on from this… Thanks

        1. Yes. That is true. It does not help everybody but it will help somebody.

          I think this is a good reference for us to know what the government benefits are, so we can be very conscious of future decisions. Like how many hulog is needed. What type of termination is qualified, etc.

          You asked a very good question though. Very complete. I know you can find a better job. Crisis or not, good people are hard to find.

      1. 36 na hulog but not necessarily na continues na hulog yun right po? atleast 12months hulog from the time of unemployment did I got it right Ma’am? Thank you po.

        1. 18 months from the time of involuntary unemployment not 12 let me correct myself po (1yr & 6 months) tas dapat naka 36 na hulog.

        2. Yes it did not say continuous. Basta kailangan, 12 months out of 18 months.

          IMPORTANT: 12 months of the 36 months should have been paid within the 18-month period prior to the month of involuntary separation.

  6. Teminated na ang aming company na gigatech dahil subcon kami mdc ang main contractor pero ayaw pa kami bigyan ng certicate ng aming company
    (gigatech) dahil main contractor daw ang
    ( MDC) ang nagteminate at hinde ang aming company at pinaghahanap n kami ng bagong work colipied b kami kung kami na ang pumunta sa dole kahit walang form ng aming company

    1. Gigatech is the client of MDC, who is an agency and your main employer.

      You are not yet terminated or unemployed but in floating status. If MDC cannot find you a new employer within 3-6 months, only then are you terminated.

  7. Hi.Nakapag fill up na po kami ng form from dole but the problem is paano kami mag aapply online sa sss? May link po ba na ibibgay?Thank you sa sasagot.

    1. Sa mga gusto mag apply ng unemployment benefits sa sss ito po ang procedure

      1st -is mag log in kau sa ncr.dole.gov.ph
      2nd – piliin ang request ng certificate of involuntary separation
      3rd – fill upan nyo lahat ng question dun tapos mag provide kau ng email address nyo na ilalagay
      Note: dapat ay meron na kaung notice of termination from the company or notaryo na kayo ay nawalan ng trabaho at dapat ay may valid i.d. kau kasi iaatach yan dun and dont forget na dapat kung san dole branch nabibilang ang company nyo ay dun nyo dapat i address ang request nyo
      4th – may mag eemail sa inyo na regarding sa application nyo
      5th- hintayin nyo ang email sa inyo ng dole na available na ang cetificate nyo
      6th- pumunta sa kahit saan sss branch at i apply ang inyong unemplyment benefits
      Requirements needed:
      1 notice of termination from your employer or notaryo na kayo ay nawalan ng trabaho
      2 certificate of involuntary separation from dole
      3 xerox of valid i.d.

  8. good day po may hulog po sss ko nang almost 4yrs sa dating kong mga work and dito po sa bago kong work as a seaferer po ako wala pa po akong hulog and 1 month onboard palang ako nong nag pa uwe si company due to covid and ang last hulog ko po at nov or december qualified po ba ako

    1. Who is Qualified for the Unemployment Benefit?

      a. The applicant should be a member of SSS. If you’re not even part of SSS, you are NOT qualified. If you are a voluntary contributer, you are NOT qualified.

      b. Member-applicant must have paid at least 36 monthly contributions.

      IMPORTANT: 12 months of the 36 months should have been paid within the 18-month period prior to the month of involuntary separation.

      c. There is an Age Requirement:

      a. For everyone else, you must be 60 years old or below at the time of separation.
      b. For racehorse jockeys, aged 55 years old and below.
      c. For Underground and surface mine workers, age should be 50 years old and below.

      d. You can only claim it once every three years from the date of involuntary separation.

      e. You did NOT resign voluntarily. That’s why it’s called Involuntary Unemployed. Once you quit, you are NOT eligible for the program.

      f. You must have been fired due to the following AUTHORIZED causes:

  9. tanong ko lang po new hire po ako as a seaferer and one month lang po onboard pero may hulog po ako na almost 4yrs sa sss previous work ko still qualified poba?

  10. tanong ko lang po new hire po ako as a seaferer and one month lang po onboard pero may hulog po ako na almost 4yrs sa sss previous work ko still qualified poba?

  11. Panu Po nagstary? May mga nakuha na po ba? KC retrenched din Po aq itong June 27 lang……. Tnx po

  12. Panu Po nagstary? May mga nakuha na po ba? KC retrenched din Po aq itong June 27 lang……. Tnx po

  13. Hello, what if the company has simply ceased their operations but is determined to make their agents wait until they will just voluntarily resign? Employees have been on no work no pay status since the beginning of the quarantine in March. They received an email that the company will cease its operations due to an investigation towards the latter part of May. After that, they’ve been finding ways to either terminate their employees by fabricating allegations or by offering them an expedited processing of their final pay or a recommendation to a different company if they resign immediately (which, if I might add, did not even work out. Other company did not honor the agreement). Now, the company’s email domain has been discontinued and emails are bouncing back. The employees did not even receive their SBWS and they just want some kind of help.

    1. SBWS is not an obligation or mandatory. So this is a dead end.

      It is possible that the company is closed and have not operated since the start of ECQ. It is only one month from the start of GCQ. They have been busy to make employees voluntarily resign, fabricate allegations, offered fast payment of final pay, etc. That’s a lot of activity for a company that’s closing down!

      Can you please offer more information about this company? What do they do? How long have they been in operations? Type of company? Number of employees, etc.? Because with just the information you gave, everything is hearsay, and it’s really hard to help. Thank you!

  14. Hi, paano po kung nag hulog ako sa SSS as self employed/voluntary and then yung company ko po ang nagpatuloy 1yr and 2 months palang po ang hulog ng employer ko qualified po ba ako? salamat po

  15. Hello po! Kasali po ako dun sa max contribution and I filed na sa SSS kanina. Per SSS, almost 16k lang po makukuha ko. Hindi po ba dapat 20k? may specific coverage po ng contributions, like average credit for the past 12months? Also may unposted contribution pa ung former employer ko ng 1 month so i’m wondering if naka-affect to sa contribution. Thank you po!!

    1. How much is total contribution for SSS? Take a screenshot and send it here blocking your name.

      And yes, they look at the average if may butas ang contribution on the dates of coverage.

  16. Paano po pg pansamantala pong nagsara yung company po n pinapsukan pwede po b mag apply ng unemployment benefit? Sbi po smen 1 month lng po mgsasara pero d p po sure un..tnx po

  17. Panu po pg bgla po nagsara pero wla mn lng po abiso smen magsasara po pla nlmn nlng nmn nung july 13 po last day n psok n po pla nmin un tpos sbi po 1 month lng po magasara pero wla nmn po pinakita smen n memo n tlgng 1 month lng cla mgsasra pde po b ko mag apply nun ng unemployment benefit wla n po ksi ksiguraduhn n kung mkakabalik po b kme o hindi n po..

    1. You have been placed on floating status. You are still employed. You cannot avail of unemployment benefits yet.

  18. Hi Tina,
    May I please ask, what if the employee was rendundated in the company but he/she found a new a job in a new company right after. Can the employee still apply for unemployment benefit in SSS?

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