• Social Security coverage of househelp

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    Persida Acosta

    Persida Acosta

    Dear PAO,
    My husband is planning to get a yaya/helper for my mother-in-law because she is already old and fragile. She is used to living on her own and although she still has a sharp mind, she now needs help as she is already having a hard time preparing her own food, eating, dressing up and bathing. He plans to give the helper a salary of P4,200.00 as long as she is stay-in. He just wants to know if, with that amount of salary, he still needs to pay for the helper’s Social Security System (SSS) contributions. If so, how much does he need to pay? Your advice will be greatly appreciated.
    Verna

    Dear Verna,
    Household or domestic helpers are compulsorily covered under the Social Security Law. Section 9 of Republic Act (RA) No. 8282, otherwise known as the Social Security Law, clearly impresses the mandate that, “(a) Coverage in the SSS shall be compulsory upon all employees not over 60 years of age and their employers: Provided, that in the case of domestic helpers, their monthly income shall not be less than P1,000 a month: x x x”

    With the passage of the Domestic Workers Act or Batas Kasambahay (RA 10361), the coverage of domestic helpers under Social Security remains intact. Although it eliminated the salary base (not less than P1,000 a month), RA 10361 requires that the concerned domestic helper must have rendered at least one month of service so as to oblige the employer from paying and remitting proper contributions. (Section 30, Id.) Said law, likewise, provides for the minimum wage of domestic workers, which may be reviewed, and if proper, determined and adjusted a year from the effectivity thereof and periodically thereafter. (Section 24, Id.)

    Should your husband hire a household helper for his mother, he will be required to pay and remit the monthly SSS contributions, once said helper has rendered at least one month of service, notwithstanding the fact that the salary grants to the latter amounts to P4,200. Such obligation is imposed upon by law and there are no exceptions. In fact, Section 30 of the said law expressly states that premium payments or contributions are to be shouldered by the employer. It is only when the monthly salary of the domestic helper amounts to or exceeds P5,000 that they are required to pay the proportionate share in the premium payments or contributions, as provided by law.

    Corollary, your husband will be required to pay and remit monthly premium payments or contributions of P440 as SSS contributions, plus P10 as Employees’ Compensation contributions, in consonance with the SSS revised schedule of contributions. (https://www.sss.gov.ph/sss/appmanager/pages.jsp?page=scheduleofcontribution)

    We hope that we were able to answer your queries. Please be reminded that this advice is based solely on the facts you have narrated and our appreciation of the same. Our opinion may vary when other facts are changed or elaborated.

    Editor’s note: Dear PAO is a daily column of the Public Attorney’s Office. Questions for Chief Acosta may be sent to dearpao@manilatimes.net

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