Press Release
October 15, 2016

Koko seeks one-time amnesty for employers
to settle unpaid SSS dues of kasambahays

A one-time amnesty is being proposed by Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III to allow employers to settle the unpaid Social Security System (SSS) contributions of their househelpers.

Pimentel recently filed Senate Bill No. 1180, seeking to amend the pertinent provisions of Presidential Decree 442, as amended, and R.A. 10361, or "An Act Instituting Policies for the Protection and Welfare of Domestic Workers."

Also known as "Batas Kasambahay," the law, he said, breathed life to the Constitutional mandate for the State to protect the rights of workers and promote their welfare.

However, he said only a few of some two million househelpers are members of SSS, Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), and Pag-IBIG Fund, based on records of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

He said R.A. 7655, or "An Act Increasing the Minimum Wage of Househelpers," made compulsory the SSS coverage for househelpers earning at least P1,000 a month.

Since its effectivity in 1993, however, the number of household employers who have complied with the law is quite low as shown by the DOLE statistics, Pimentel said.

This was notably caused, he said, by penalties imposed by R.A. 8282, or the "Social Security Law" on employers who have failed to deduct and to remit the SSS contributions of their househelpers.

He said a significant number of kasambahay employers who wanted to comply with the registration requirements under the Batas Kasambahay were deterred because of the huge penalties. "They stopped from continuing with the SSS registration of their kasambahays," he said.

As a result, he said, the implementation of the Batas Kasambahay, particularly the SSS coverage of househelpers, was stunted significantly.

Pimentel said the proposed measure seeks to provide employers with a one-time amnesty to settle their SSS contributions as mandated by law without any penalty imposed thereon.

"This financial relief will hopefully jumpstart the long delayed compliance of the kasambahay employers to cover their househelpers with SSS benefits," he added.

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