SSS increases pension, funeral benefits

Rappler.com
SSS increases pension, funeral benefits
The increase in benefits will be implemented retroactively, with Sept. 1, 2013 as date of effectivity

MANILA, Philippines – The Social Security System (SSS) released the terms of its 10% across-the-board disability pension increase and doubled funeral grant under the Employees’ Compensation (EC) Program.

The pension hike covers about 17,200 active EC beneficiaries as of Aug. 31, 2013. The pension is given to those who suffered permanent work-related disability – partial or total, SSS Vice President for Benefits Administration Agnes San Jose said.

“Pensioners will get higher EC pensions, as well as the additional benefits resulting from the retroactive date of effectivity, in September 2014 upon completion of our system changes,” she added.

Meanwhile, SSS claimants of EC funeral grants for deaths dated Sept. 1, 2013 onward are entitled to the higher P20,000 ($456.26) benefit.

“Claimants covered by the date of effectivity whose EC funeral grants of P10,000 ($228.13) were already settled by SSS will each receive an additional P10,000 ($228.13) in burial benefits, given the retroactive implementation of the increase,” San Jose said.

Both adjustments will be implemented retroactively, with Sept. 1, 2013 as date of effectivity.

President Benigno Aquino III approved the EC benefit upgrades under Executive Order No. 167 issued on May 26.

The EC Program provides additional benefits for employees with work-related sicknesses and injuries, and those who died in the course of doing their jobs. It is administered by SSS for the private sector and by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) for the public sector.

The increases stemmed from SSS’ proposal to hike EC pensions and funeral grants for SSS members and beneficiaries. The proposal was submitted to the Employees’ Compensation Commission (ECC) for approval.

The ECC expanded the SSS proposal to also include higher EC funeral grants for those covered by the GSIS, and then endorsed the EC benefit increases to Malacañang for its approval for implementation.

SSS also recently announced an across-the-board pension increase, this time at 5%, effective June 2014, for 1.9 million SSS pensioners under the Social Security Program.

“SSS’ sustained financial growth has paved the way for new benefit increases for members and beneficiaries. This year marks a significant period in our continuing campaign to provide more meaningful benefits, while balancing it with our duty to look after the fund’s long-term viability,” San Jose said. – Rappler.com

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