SSS offers calamity relief package to Nona-hit members

MANILA, Philippines – Social Security System members that were affected by Typhoon Nona (Melor) can avail of the SSS calamity relief package starting January 2016.

The calamity relief package includes early renewal of salary loans, advance disbursement of pensions, and preferential terms for house repair and improvement loans which will be available ‪starting January 4, said Boobie Angela A. Ocay, SSS Assistant Vice President for Member Loans Department.

The availment of the calamity relief package follows the decision of President Benigno Aquino III to declare a state of national calamity through Proclamation No. 1186 on December 18. 

Among the areas that sustained extensive damage because of the storm are the provinces of Albay, Northern Samar, Oriental Mindoro, Romblon, and Sorsogon.

"In this time of need, we offer our assistance to our calamity-stricken members and pensioners so that they can cope and move on faster from the effects of this recent disaster," Ocay said.

One of the programs under the calamity relief package is the Salary Loan Early Renewal Program (SLERP), which waives the required 50% completion of loan payment as a qualifying condition for loan renewal under our regular guidelines.

This means even borrowers who have only paid a few monthly amortizations are allowed to renew their loans as a special consideration.

The SSS is also waiving the 1% service fee normally charged on SSS salary loans to increase the loan proceeds of members availing of the SLERP. The private sector's insurance firm grants one-month and two-month salary loans of up to P16,000 and P32,000, respectively, payable in two years.

"The heavy rains and floods caused by Typhoon Nona had damaged thousands of houses. To help our affected members to restore their destroyed homes, the SSS is providing a lower interest rate of 6% for home repair and improvement loans as part of the calamity relief package," Ocay said.

Under the SSS Direct House Repair and Improvement Loan Program offered under the calamity relief package, eligible members can borrow funds of up to P1 million, with payment terms at a maximum of 20 years for locally-employed members, and 15 years for overseas Filipino workers.

SSS also said pensioners residing in the declared calamity areas can apply for advance 3-month pensions.

Members can claim their checks in the branch that received their application after 3 days, while pensioners can claim their check in the same branch that accepted their application after a week. 

Relief package for Lando victims 

Meanwhile, Ocay reminded members and pensioners covered by the calamity relief package for Typhoon Lando that the availment deadline for SLERP and the advance 3-month pension will be on December 31, 2015. 

"The deadline for Lando-affected members who intend to apply for house repair and improvement loans, on the other hand, is on October 22 next year, one year after the issuance of the corresponding circular last October 23," Ocay said.

Typhoon Lando devastated several provinces in northern Philippines last October. 

The NDRRMC-declared calamity areas due to Typhoon Lando include the provinces of Isabela, Aurora, Pangasinan, Cagayan and Nueva Ecija; and municipalities of Calumpit (Bulacan), Sugpon (Ilocos Sur), Arayat (Pampanga), Infanta and General Nakar (Quezon), and Camiling and Ramos (Tarlac).

“Pensioners whose registered address in the SSS database differs from their current residence must present a certification of their stay in declared calamity area from NDRRMC, Department of Social Welfare and Development or their barangay chairman along with their application form,” Ocay explained.– Rappler.com