SSS runs after delinquent employers in Legazpi City
LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines – Social Security System (SSS) officials went around this city this week to post show cause orders on 10 business establishments that have failed to pay their contributions to the government agency.
SSS Acting Vice President for Operations Legal Services Division I and II Renato Jacinto S. Cuisia led other national and regional SSS officials in posting the show cause orders on Tuesday, July 30.
The establishments were identified as KDVM Grilling Point, Almiñe Glass and Aluminum Center, Sampaguita Tourist Inn, Funeraria Oro, Junzon’s Commercial, DE FEDBAC Corporation, Family Kitchenette, YCS Restaurant & Catering Service, La Granja Boutique Hotel Corporation, and Casablanca Management Group Company.
Legazpi City was the latest stop in the SSS' nationwide Run After Contribution Evaders (RACE) operations. It was chosen because of its high rate of non-compliance, according to SSS-Legazpi.
Of the 5,040 registered active employer accounts in Legazpi City, more than 3,400 or 68% don’t pay their SSS contributions.
Cuisia said that the purpose of the RACE operations is to raise awareness on SSS contributions, increase the level of compliance among business owners, and improve collection efficiency.
He clarified that they were not doing this to destroy employers, who are critical in ensuring SSS' viable fund life.
"At the end of the day, it is not about how many were convicted, but how much [we] have collected,” Cuisia said, adding that the collections would be ultimately credited to employees.
The business establishments included in the RACE operations in Legazpi cited different reasons for their non-compliance, among them, financial distress, posting issues, and missing documents. Cuisia said that good faith and motives, employees' welfare should not be set aside.
To make his point clearer, he asked staff members at the business establishments, “What if something unfortunate happened to you, or a female employee conceived, or was approaching retirement, what benefit could you/they get?”
The answer was a resounding “none.”
The SSS said that upon preliminary inspection, the business establishments failed to comply with Republic Act No. 11199 or the SSS Act of 2018. Prior to the July 30 RACE operation, a billing letter was sent to the businesses, as well as a follow-up letter on July 12.
The employers were given 15 days to take the necessary actions. Otherwise, they faced civil, administrative, and criminal charges punishable by up to 12 years of imprisonment.
The SSS said the erring businesses can take advantage of the Contribution Penalty Condonation Program, which is available until September 6. The one-time amnesty program removes the penalty for unpaid contributions and allows them to be compliant with the SSS Law.
Nationwide, there are about 9,000 pending cases for non-compliant, delinquent employers. In 2018, 78 business establishments were convicted but they appealed to settle their obligations. – Rappler.com