BAGUIO CITY -The Social Security System (SSS) continues to expand its services in order to allow more members to avail of additional options that would be considered add on to their pension and other benefits from the corporation’s services in the future.
Luis V. Olais, assistant vice president for SSS Northern Luzon cluster, said SSS already opened the applications for its new Personal Equity and Savings Option (SSS-PESO)) fund program, a provident fund scheme that aims to increase savings among the rapidly growing members, particularly for building their retirement fund.
Olais disclosed the new SSS program is open to members 54 years old and below, and has at least six consecutive contributions under the SSS regular program within the last twelve months prior to enrolment to the PESO fund.
He explained the effective date of membership of interested members commences at the month a contribution is first made to the SSS-PESO fund.
“Interested members can enrol in the PESO fund for an initial contribution of P1,000 with succeeding contributions of at least P1,000 and multiples of P100. An SSS-PESO enrollee can contribute as much as P100,000 per year,” Olais stressed.
For the pilot implementation of the SSS-PESO, he revealed interested members can apply in their branches located in the National Capital Region (NCR), and the different branches located in the different parts of the archipelago.
According to Olais, members are required to appear before an SSS authorized representative to sign the accomplished forms for confirmation of enrolment to the SSS-PESO.
“Our procedures will allow SSS to verify the authenticity of the documents and the identity of the applicant to the new provident fund that will based its dividends on the proceeds of the treasury bills,” he added.
Under the guidelines for the PESO fund enrolees, employed members, regardless of the amount of their current monthly contributions, could join the SSS-PESO fund while self-employed, voluntary and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) members should be paying the maximum SSS contribution of P1,760 monthly to be able to contribute in the provident fund.
Further, Olias cited there has to be a corresponding SSS contribution on the month the member will make contributions to the new account.
On the other hand, Olais emphasized refunds, withdrawals and benefit claims will be credited to the member’s single savings or current account with an SSS depository bank.
The SSS official underscored early termination of enrolment to the SSS-PESO fund is not allowed by the corporation.
Olais asserted members can enjoy higher return on their savings under the tax-free fund, which offers guaranteed earnings that are based on rates higher than those offered in a savings account or bank deposit.
PESO fund contributions are reportedly invested in government securities to ensure safety and liquidity and are guaranteed to earn based on prevailing treasury bill rates and that the funds are allocated to three accounts, namely, retirement, medical and general purpose, which covers education, housing, livelihood and unemployment.
By Dexter A. See