SSS tightens enforcement of employer compliance, collects P1.4-B thru legal action
Employers who disregard their obligations with the Social Security System (SSS) can expect criminal and civil legal actions against them following the directive from the new SSS management to intensify the agency’s enforcement of their compliance with the law.
SSS Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Counsel Voltaire P. Agas noted that SSS has initiated legal actions such as issuance of demand letters and filing of cases against over 34,000 delinquent employers since 2010, bringing in almost P1.4 billion in collections to date.
“We will not hesitate to go after and file cases against those discovered to be violators of the Social Security (SS) Act, such as non- and underreporting of employees, as well as non- and under-remittance of contributions. For the past several years, SSS has been actively going after delinquent employers, and we will continue to strengthen our campaign to ensure that companies obey the law,” he said.
The efforts of SSS also resulted in a total of 41 employer convictions since 2010, with a corresponding collectible delinquency of P61.66 million. SSS plans to further intensify its campaign to bring down employer delinquency using the full strength of the law under the current administration.
Agas emphasized the need for the pension fund to maximize the powers provided by the SS Act so that it can increase its contribution collections to enable the fund to grant higher pensions and benefits.
Under the law, employers who fail to report workers for SSS coverage and remit employees’ monthly contributions will be punished with a fine of P5,000 to P20,000, imprisonment of six years up to 12 years, or both based on the discretion of the court. Employers with delinquent employee contributions are also charged a monthly penalty of three percent until the overdue SSS premiums are fully paid.
“Employers who deduct SSS payments from their workers’salaries but fail to remit these to the SSS are likewise guilty of committing the crime of estafa, which is also punishable by imprisonment under the Revised Penal Code,” Agas said.
Under the SS Act, private companies are required to report new workers for SSS coverage within 30 days from the start of employment and remit the proper amount of contributions – including the employer and employee share — to SSS every month.
“We will craft policies and improve our monitoring systems to ensure that employers faithfully comply with their SSS obligations. May this serve as a stern warning to all erring employers to start changing their ways and start doing things right,” Agas said.
He also urged employees to take an active role in asserting their right to social security protection by reporting to any SSS branch their employers who neglect to report them for SSS coverage, underreport their salaries resulting in lower contribution payments, or fail to remit their contributions on time.
“Every private company, regardless of its size, should fully comply with the SSS obligations provided by the SS Act. It is the mandate of the law and everybody has to follow,” Agas said. (Press Rel ease)