The Social Security System (SSS) filed charges against more than 1,400 delinquent companies last year for various violations, the most common of which is their failure to remit the monthly SSS contributions of their employees.
SSS Officer-in-Charge Edgar Solilapsi said 1,165 employers were sued in 2012 for non-remittance of contributions totaling P376.33 million, including P193 million in penalties. Under the law, employers are charged a monthly penalty of three percent for overdue contributions.
"We continue to exhaust all legal means available to compel employers to fulfill their obligations under the law. As a result of our campaign against erring employers all over the country, the SSS sued a total of 1,418 companies in 2012, up by 16 percent from our 1,227 total in 2011," he said.
Among those charged last year were 253 employers that failed to report their workers for SSS coverage and those that refused to present their employment records to SSS account officers, who are assigned to check companies' adherence to the Social Security Law.
Under the law, delinquent employers face jail terms of 6 to 12 years and fines ranging from P5,000 to P20,000. Those who deduct SSS contributions and loan payments from workers' salaries without remitting these to the SSS are also liable for estafa or swindling under the Revised Penal Code.
"Apart from possible imprisonment and stiff fines, erring employers must also fully settle their delinquency. This includes the penalties that continue to add to their overdue SSS obligation every month until full payment," Solilapsi said. "The longer they delay, the more they pay."
The agency collected P303.88 million last year from employers that settled their delinquent accounts after the SSS initiated legal actions against them, such as issuance of demand letters and filing of cases in court and before the Social Security Commission, which is empowered to hear and settle SSS-related disputes.
"To protect themselves against negligent employers, we urge member-employees to keep their pay slips, company IDs and other employment documents. They should also register at the SSS website at www.sss.gov.ph so they can personally monitor their remitted SSS payments," Solilapsi said.
A total of 638 companies, or nearly half of the 1,418 employers charged in 2012, were based in the National Capital Region. The SSS also sued last year 335 private firms in Luzon; 192 employers in Visayas; and 253 companies in Mindanao for violations of the SS Law.