The Philippine Social Security System or SSS offers benefits to its members including sickness benefit and maternity benefit.
SSS members who pay their monthly contributions to the SSS consistently can avail of these benefits when the need arises.
For example, when the SSS female member gets pregnant, she can file a maternity benefit and submit the required documents to her employer if she’s employed, or directly to the SSS office if she’s unemployed, self-employed, or a voluntary member.
Or when the SSS member gets sick, he or she can file for sickness benefit with the SSS.
For employed members, your sickness benefit and maternity benefit will be given to you by your employer in advance once your requirements and qualifications have been approved.
If your employer does not pay you your benefits, you can report your employer to the SSS.
This is based on a circular of the SSS, Circular No. 2017-006, addressed to all the employers, and it’s entitled, Legal Obligations of Employers to pay in advance the SS Sickness and Maternity Benefits to Qualified Employee-Members.
In this circular, it states that the employer should pay in advance the following SSS benefits to employed SSS members:
- SSS Sickness Benefit – This should be paid in advance by the employer to the qualified employee every regular pay day or on the 15th and last day of each applicable month.
- SSS Maternity Benefit – This should be paid in full by the employer to the qualified employee within 30 days from the filing of the maternity leave application.
These benefits should be given in advance so that the qualified members can use it for their medical expenses since they’re unable to work due to sickness, injury, child birth or miscarriage.
What if the employer failed to or refused to pay these benefits in advance?
Employer’s failure or refusal to advance to their employees the sickness or maternity benefit shall be subject to the following penalties at the discretion of the court:
- A fine of not less than P5,000 nor more than P20,000 (OR)
- Imprisonment for not less than 6 years and 1 day nor more than 12 years or both.
If the failure of refusal to advance the benefit is committed by an association, partnership, or corporation or any other institution, the ones who will be liable to the penalties mentioned above are the managing head, directors or partners of the institution.
As an SSS member, you are entitled to the SSS benefits especially if you know that you pay your SSS contributions consistently based on your declared salary.
Click here to read: How to Compute for SSS Maternity Benefit