HOW long does it take for the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) to process and release the title of a house and lot to a GSIS member who has availed himself/herself of loans which he/she had already fully paid?
Since I have been frequenting the GSIS headquarters along Diosdado Macapagal Avenue, I got the answer from some GSIS members who were given a common reply to their inquiry: GSIS could release their titles within a period of six months to one year.
Really? How could this be? Why is GSIS not able to immediately release property titles to their member borrowers? Fixing a time period is unfair to a GSIS member borrower whose only asset after leaving government service may be the house and lot package that he or she acquired with GSIS’s financing.
I was to learn more about GSIS’s policy on release of titles when my wife prepaid the balance of her GSIS loan two or three days before the long Christmas holiday last year. The last time I made the final amortization on my wife’s loan, I was given a form for my wife to fill up in requesting the release of the title. When I submitted the form to a GSIS counter on the ground floor, I was told that there was no exception to the “six months to one year” waiting period rule.
I am writing this piece because I am afraid not only for myself but also more importantly for GSIS’s old members, who might not be around anymore when the GSIS is finally able to make good its “six-months-to-one-year” promise. I am not a GSIS member but because I live with my wife in her house and ride with her in her car, I, too, am worried about the long waiting time.
Since I would turn 68 soon, does GSIS mean either I outlive its allocated period or its allocated period outlives me? I would not know which of the two would prevail. Will anyone among the top insiders of the government institution decide for me?
I am 67 going on 68 and worried. So how about the others much older than I am, and like my wife and I, are raring to get hold of the title to their property? When will their wish come true? The answer could come only from GSIS. Being the lender, it sure has its own priorities and it seems the interest of aging government retirees is not one of them.
Incidentally, I tried communicating with three government agencies including GSIS. On February 11, I requested via email the release of the property title. The e-mail was addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org, which I presumed belongs to Roberto Vergara, GSIS president. Until yesterday, I have not yet received any reply.
I also sent an email to the Calamba offices of Pag-IBIG Fund and PhilHealth regarding the membership payments of my wife, for our two household employees. As of yesterday, neither has acknowledged my email
In fairness to the GSIS, Pag-IBIG Fund and PhilHealth, I am giving the benefit of the doubt. It is possible my email, as well as other communications from the public, did not reach them. Either their email addresses I got from Google do not exist or my own email address has not been efficiently working on the day I emailed them.
Ironically, I used the same personal email address on December 12, 2014 to communicate with Johnny Bench Enterprises in the US via email@example.com. I wrote to seek the authenticity of a baseball signed by the great baseball player Johnny Bench, a Hall of Famer. I received a reply from the company on the same day.
“We do not have qualification to authenticate signatures that we did not witness,” the company said. “You must go through a licensed authentication service.” I did not feel disappointed because I emailed my question to the wrong company. But at least Johnny Bench Enterprises recognized the importance of responding to communications.