SSS eases processing of benefit claims for HTI victims

QUEZON CITY-- To provide faster assistance to House Technology Industries (HTI) fire victims and beneficiaries, the Social Security System (SSS) relaxed its documentary requirements for processing and payment of funeral and death benefits.

Instead of asking for death certificate, we only used the masterlist of affected members provided by HTI in processing and releasing of payment for SSS and EC funeral grants and we will use the same masterlist in processing death benefits. We did not ask the claimants to submit other documentary requirements, said SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel F. Dooc.

As the administrator of the Employees' Compensation Commission (ECC), the SSS also used the same masterlist to process EC funeral benefit, hence, beneficiaries will no longer need to submit death certificate.

The amount for SS funeral benefit for the beneficiaries ranges from P20,000 to P40,000 depending on the member's contribution while EC funeral is fixed at P20,000. The funeral benefits under both programs are granted as long as member paid at least one contribution.

Based on verification, there were five casualties from the HTI fire and their beneficiaries had already filed their SSS and EC funeral claims with the help of HTI representative Ryann Villanueva. According to SSS EPZA Branch Head Marina Paulina Pante, they have already issued two checks for SS and EC funeral grants to these beneficiaries.

Julieta De Guia Sismaet, the mother of Jerome Sismaet was paid SSS and EC funeral grants amounting to P28,760 and P20,000 respectively while the EC and SSS funeral benefit for deceased Richard Sargento was already paid to his common law wife in the amount of P20,000 and P23,183 respectively.

Similarly, the wife of deceased member Alex Lerog was also paid SSS funeral benefit amounting to P23,975 and EC funeral amounting to P20,000 while the beneficiary of Ma. Antonina Caviteno received the EC and SSS funeral claim amounting to P20,000 and P36,098 respectively.

Lastly, Dennis Arcinue, father of deceased member Jojo Arcinue was paid P20,000 and P23,186 for the EC and SSS funeral grants.

We have expedited the processing of EC and SSS funeral benefits to ensure that beneficiaries of our members will get the help that they need during these hard times. We hope that SSS is able to extend the care and assistance that our members and beneficiaries need, said Dooc.

For the SSS and EC death benefits, the common-law wife of Richard can withdraw the EC death benefit on April 3 while the husband of Caviteno and the guardian of Jerome's three children can withdraw their EC and SSS death benefits respectively on April 10.

Aside from funeral and death benefits, victims who only suffered minor injuries may file for SS and EC sickness. However, for the processing of sickness claim, members have to submit the documentary requirements.

As of this writing, we already received and evaluated 13 sickness claim applications of HTI employees who are still confined in the hospital. Some of them were granted a minimum of 30 days and a maximum of 120 days, said Dooc.

Source: Philippines Information Agency