SSS – Social Security System – Purpose, Functions, and Responsibilities

The Social Security System (SSS) is a government agency in the Philippines that offers social insurance programs to Filipinos. The SSS provides protection against various contingencies such as old age, disability, death, and unemployment.

To become a member of the SSS, an individual must be employed, self-employed, or voluntary. The employer is required to deduct the employee’s contributions from his/her salary and remit it to the SSS along with the employer’s share.

Also Read: What is OWWA Cares? #OWWAcares

The Social Security System (SSS) was founded by Republic Act No. 1161, also known as the Social Security Act of 1954. In 1997, Republic Act No. 8282 was passed, amending the law. Government employees, on the other hand, are protected by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), which is a separate state-pension system.

Members of the SSS are entitled to various benefits such as retirement, disability, survivors’, and funeral benefits. They are also entitled to avail of other services such as loans and health care benefits.

sss philippines

What is SSS?

Social Security System (SSS) is a government-run social insurance program for workers in the private, professional, and informal sectors.

The Social Security System (SSS) is required by law to promote the welfare of its members and their families (under Republic Act 1161, as amended by Republic Act 8282, commonly known as the Social Security Act of 1997) It is charged with putting in place comprehensive initiatives to ensure that all private sector workers, including those in the informal sector, have access to the timely, convenient, and reliable social protection that they deserve, both now and in the future.

Certain membership kinds in the SSS are required, while others are optional, as a social insurance plan. Employee and employer contributions are distributed equally, but self-employed and volunteer members are responsible for the entire cost of their premiums.

What are the SSS Benefits?

The Social Security System (SSS) is in charge of providing social security benefits to private-sector employees. In the event of a worker’s death, disability, sickness, maternity, or old age, social security provides a replacement income.

Vision

The following is the SSS vision statement:

A viable social security institution providing universal and equitable social protection through world-class service.

Mission

The SSS mission statement for the coming years is as follows:

To manage sound and viable social security system which shall promote social justice and provide meaningful protection to members and their families against the hazards of disability, sickness, maternity. Old age, death and other contingencies resulting in loss of income or financial burden.

Corporate Values

The following is the SSS Corporate Values statement:

The SSS aims to institutionalize a corporate culture that instills the core values of Trust, Empowerment and Teamwork.

sss logo philippines
SSS Philippines logo

SSS Benefits, Programs and Services

SSS provides programs and services to all Filipinos, both those who live in the Philippines and those who live overseas. Death, funeral, maternity leave, permanent disability, retirement, sickness, and involuntary separation/unemployment benefits are all provided by SSS.

Only a small percentage of the population is aware of the SSS’s programs and services. Take a look at this comprehensive list of programs and services available to all Filipinos for better guidance.

Death Benefit

A death benefit is a cash payment sent to the dead member’s beneficiaries, which might be in the form of a monthly pension or a lump sum payment.

Coverage:

  • On top of the 13th month pension paid every December, the dead member’s beneficiaries will get a monthly death pension.
  • The member’s paid contributions will determine the monthly pension, however the minimum amount is P1,000 (for members with less than 10 credited years of service).
  • A P1,000 bonus is also included.

Conditions:

  • The death benefit will be paid to the principal beneficiaries of the deceased member if they have paid for at least 36 months before to the semester in which they died.
  • A spouse (if married), legitimated or legally adopted children, and illegitimate children are all legitimize beneficiaries.
  • If no primary beneficiaries are found, the financial benefit will be distributed to the member’s secondary beneficiaries (ex. dependent parents).
  • If the beneficiary is a minor, the equivalent of 10% of the member’s contribution or P250, whichever is larger, will be granted. It’s important to note that there can’t be a substitute beneficiary.

Disability benefit

The disability benefit is a monetary payment made to a member who has been permanently disabled, whether partially or completely disabled. It can come in the form of a monthly pension or a lump sum payment.

Coverage:

A monthly Disability Pension and a P500 Supplemental Allowance will be provided to a qualified member. Members will receive a disability pension of P1,000 if they have fewer than 10 credited years of service, P1,200 if they have at least CYS, and P2,400 if they have at least 20 CYS. There’s also a P1,000 bonus to be had.

Conditions:

  • If the member has paid at least one month’s contribution prior to the semester of disability, he or she would be eligible for the disability benefit.
  • Before the semester of disability, the member must have paid at least 36 months of contributions to be eligible for a monthly pension. Otherwise, he will be given a lump sum payment.

Funeral benefit

The cash benefit that will be received by the individual who paid for the dead member’s burial expenses is referred to as a funeral benefit.

Coverage:

The amount will vary between a minimum of P20,000 and a maximum of P40,000, depending on the member’s total contribution and credited service years.

Conditions:

  • If an employee is a member, his or her employer should be informed.
  • To be eligible, self-employed people, OFWs, and non-working spouses must make at least one month’s payment.
  • If a volunteer member, at least one (1) month of contribution is required.

Maternity benefit

A female member who is unable to work due to childbirth or miscarriage is eligible for an SSS maternity leave benefit. For a normal delivery, she is entitled to 60 days of paid maternity leave, and for a cesarean delivery, she is entitled to 78 days.

Coverage:

  • 100 % of the member’s average daily salary credit (ADSC) reimbursement for maternity benefits. This is multiplied by 105 days for a normal or cesarean delivery, 120 days for single parents, and 60 days for miscarriage, stillbirth, or a pregnancy that was terminated.
  • If you are working, your employer is responsible for paying your maternity benefits in full within 30 days of filing your maternity leave application, which is subject to SSS reimbursement.

Conditions:

  • In the 12 months preceding the semester of her childbirth or miscarriage, the member must have contributed for at least three months.
  • If the member is employed, she must inform SSS about her pregnancy through her job.
  • If she is a self-employed or voluntary member, she must notify SSS directly.

Paternity Leave benefit

A paternity benefit is compensation given to a kid’s father when the child is born. It is essentially a portion of a woman’s maternity benefits that she extends to the child’s father, whether or not they are married.

Coverage:

He is entitled to seven days of paid leave, but only for the first four deliveries.

NOTE: SSS paternity leave is a seven-day leave that the female member (who has just given birth) allocates to the father from her enlarged maternity leave, but it must be submitted separately in the father’s employer on top of the inherent seven-day paternity leave under RA 8187.

Conditions:

  • At the time of his child’s birth, he is an employee.
  • At the time of the birth or miscarriage, he lives with his wife.
  • A 4th-degree relative or the woman’s current partner, regardless of gender identity, may take use of the leave in the event of the father’s absence or death.

Retirement benefit

The retirement benefit is a monetary payment made to a member who is unable to work due to old age. The benefit can be in the form of a one-time payment or a monthly pension.

Coverage:

In addition, every December, an additional 13th-month pension is given. For at least 10 credited years of service (CYS), the sum payable is P1,200; for at least 20 CYS, the amount payable is P2,400. It also comes with a P2,000 bonus.

Conditions:

  • A member must be at least 60 years old (optional retirement), be separated from his or her employer, and have paid at least 120 monthly contributions in the semester before retiring.
  • A member must be 65 years old (required retirement), separated from his or her employer, and have paid at least 120 monthly contributions prior to the semester of retirement.
  • Prior to the semester of retirement, the member must have contributed at least 120 monthly contributions to be eligible for the monthly pension. He or she will only be entitled for a lump sum payment if this is not the case. However, he or she will be given the option of continuing to pay the monthly contribution until the 120-month period has passed, at which point he or she will be entitled for the monthly pension.
  • Surface and underground mineworkers must be at least 50 years old (optional retirement) or 60 years old (technical retirement) and have accumulated or continuous service of at least five years.
  • Members must be at least 55 years old, PHILRACOM-licensed, have 120-month contributions, and have at least five years of professional racehorse jockey experience.

Sickness benefit

The daily monetary allowance given to a member who is unable to work due to sickness or accident is known as sickness benefit.

Coverage:

The benefit allotment is equal to 90% of the ADSC of the member. This benefit is only available for a total of 120 days per calendar year.

Conditions:

  • Because of sickness or injury, the member is unable to work and is restricted for at least four days, either in the hospital or at home.
  • Within the 12 months preceding the semester of sickness or accident, the member must have paid at least three months of payments.
  • In the current year, the member has used up all paid sick leave from the company.
  • The member should notify SSS about his or her sickness benefit application directly. Employed, self-employed, and OFWs can all benefit from this.

Unemployment benefit

Employees who are terminated from their jobs involuntarily are entitled to unemployment compensation. The sum is not a loan, but rather financial help that the member must utilize to look for a new work.

Coverage:

The benefit is equal to 50% of the member’s monthly pay. However, even if the member made more than P20, 000 and paid the maximum premium contributions, the highest amount that will be provided is P10, 000.

Conditions:

  • Due to retrenchment, redundancy, labor-saving device installation, business closure, and discontinuation of operations, the member’s employment should be terminated.
  • The benefit is not available to a member who has resigned or gone on leave without permission (AWOL).

Business Development Loan

A Business Development Loan is a type of loan designed to help businesses and industries expand, diversify, and grow their operations.

Educational Assistance Loan Program

The Educational Assistance Loan Program is a loan benefit available to members to help cover the costs of enrolling in college or vocational and technical courses for themselves or their dependents.

Employees’ Compensation (EC) Program

All registered SSS employee members who suffer accidents or illnesses that result in incapacity or death as a result of performing their work, whether within or outside the company premises, are eligible for assistance (medical services, rehabilitation services, and/or an income cash benefit).

Coverage:

  • The payment for temporary complete disability ranges from P110 to P480.
  • The benefit includes at least a P2,000 pension plus an extra P1,150 compensation for permanent partial/total disability. It also includes a P1,000 incentive for supplemental or caregiver’s allowance. Dependents are eligible for 10% of the monthly pension.
  • For death, the benefit amount — at least P2,000 — is equal to the monthly pension plus a 50% difference. It also comes with a P1,150 additional benefit. Dependents are eligible for 10% of the monthly pension.
  • P30,000 will be donated for the funeral.

Conditions:

  • When availing EC benefits, employees should notify SSS directly.
  • The employee’s sickness, injury, or death must be work-related.
  • The occurrence should not have occurred as a result of the employee’s intoxication, suicidal attempt, or gross negligence.

Flexi Fund

Flexi Fund is an optional savings program. It is a fixed-income provident fund that was established in 2001 and whose earnings are determined by SSS short-term placements or 91-day Treasury bills. It is available to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) under the age of 60.

Housing Loan

A housing Loan is an SSS-accredited participating financial institution (PFI) lending program that provides funds for the purchase, improvement, or refurbishment of a member’s home, as well as the creation of housing units.

PESO Fund (Personal Equity Savings Option)

The SSS PESO Fund (Personal Equity Savings Option) is an optional savings program that members can use to supplement their standard membership retirement benefits.

It is a tax-free provident fund that was established in September 2014 and can be made available upon the members’ retirement or when specific conditions are met, such as permanent disability.

Members can designate their beneficiaries, and the fund offers three account options: medical bills, retirement and disability, and other requirements.

Salary Loan

SSS also provides a salary loan to all qualified members in addition to lump sum and pension benefits. SSS digital ID or E-6 (acknowledged stub) and two valid IDs are required documents when applying for a wage loan (with photo and signature). Members can apply online on the SSS portal and work with their employer to make sure their contributions are current.

Coverage:

This loan has a ten percent annual interest rate until it is entirely paid off. Furthermore, if 50% of the loan amount has already been paid, the loan might be renewed.

Conditions:

  • To be eligible for a one-month SSS salary loan, a member must have made at least 36 months of total contributions and six months of contributions in the previous 12 months prior to the loan application date.
  • For a two-month salary loan, however, the member must have made at least 72 months of cumulative contributions in the month prior to the loan application.
  • There should be no outstanding SSS loan payments for the member.

Social Development Loan

Social Development Loan is a loan program for the construction of facilities and the founding of institutions that provide high-quality education and academic training programs, as well as affordable medical and health-care services to the general public and SSS members and their dependents.

Video: 7 SSS Benefits

If you’re interested in learning more about SSS benefits, watch the video below.

SSS benefits are numerous; MYSSSPH provided a brief outline of the SSS benefits.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have any further questions regarding the Social Security System (SSS), see the list of frequently asked questions and answers below.

1. What is SSS?

SSS is a Philippine government social insurance program that covers workers in the private, professional, and informal sectors.

2. What is the SSS email address?

You can reach and send your question to SSS via their email addresses DUPLONEL@sss.gov.ph / information@sss.gov.

3. What is the SSS hotline?

You can reach the SSS via their hotline at (02) 7917 7777 / (02) 921-0550.

4. Can I go directly to SSS?

Yes, you can visit the SSS office directly; however one of the SSS Online Services is the Appointment System, which allows you to schedule a visit to any SSS branch for SSS-related questions and issues. You can save time and avoid long lines at the SSS branch by scheduling an appointment online.

5. What is the purpose of  SSS?

The SSS’s purpose is to establish and promote a viable social security system that provides universal and equitable social protection while providing world-class service.

6. Who qualifies as a volunteer member?

Overseas Filipino worker (OFW) who is a Filipino under the age of 60 who has been recruited in the Philippines for employment overseas by a foreign-based employer, has a source of income in a foreign nation, and/or resides permanently in a foreign country.

Non-working spouse (NWS) of an SSS member who is not over 60 years old, legally married to a currently-employed and actively-paying SSS member, devotes full time to the management of household and family affairs (unless he or she is engaged in another vocation or employment that is subject to mandatory SSS coverage), and has never been an SSS member.

An SSS member who has been separated from employment or has ceased to be self-employed, an OFW, or a non-working spouse, but still wants to pay SSS contributions on his or her own account.

7. How does one become a member of the SSS?

Obtaining a Social Security (SS) number is the first step towards becoming a member. Remember that your Social Security number is a one-of-a-kind lifetime number that must be used in all SSS transactions. If you forget your Social Security number, contact any SSS branch right away.

8. Is it possible to register for SSS online and receive an SS Number?

Yes. A potential member can register and obtain an SS Number for the first time by visiting the SSS website (www.sss.gov.ph). He or she only needs to go to the website’s homepage and click the tab labeled “No SS Number Yet? Apply Online!” and attentively follow the instructions.

The registrant’s SSS tag will remain “No Documents Submitted” until he or she presents the requisite supporting documents to the nearest SSS branch.

9. When does the SSS coverage start?

  • If you’re hired, it’ll be on your first day.
  • If you’re self-employed, on the month and year of your first contribution payment, as long as it’s not before the stated start of your business in the case of initial coverage.
  • If you are an OFW, on the applicable month and year of your first contribution payment, which may be sooner than the date of registration in the case of initial coverage based on the payment deadline for OFWs.
  • If you’re a NWS, on the month and year of your first contribution payment, whichever is applicable.
  • If you are a separated member, your voluntary membership begins the month you resume contribution payments.

10. Is it possible to withdraw the SSS membership?

When a person joins the SSS in any capacity, he or she becomes a lifelong member. As a result, membership can’t be withdrawn. Even if you have missed contributions in the past, you may still be eligible for benefits and loan privileges if you meet the eligibility requirements.

Summary

The SSS provides universal coverage for all citizens, including overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), non-working spouses of insured persons, and those who have been separated from employment.

To become a member of the SSS in any capacity, one must register with their local branch or apply online by providing required information such as date of birth, name(s) used previously if applicable, citizenship status/status on departure formality identification number issued by National Statistics Office (NSO).

If you would like to withdraw your membership with the SSS it is not possible because once you are registered in any capacity then you will be considered a lifelong member. Even if you have missed contributions in the past, you may still be eligible for benefits and loan privileges if you meet the eligibility requirements.

I hope this article has given you some clarity on how the SSS works in the Philippines. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your local branch or visit the SSS website for more information.

Contact Information

Social Security System Philippines
Address: East Ave, Diliman, Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines
E-mail address: DUPLONEL@sss.gov.ph / information@sss.gov
Telephone Number: (02) 7917 7777 / (02) 921-0550
Website: https://sss.gov.ph/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/SSSPh

Google Map Location

Please check out the main office headquarters of SSS in the Philippines below:

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