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Bacolod City, Philippines Thursday, August 18, 2016
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Some pensioners
get huge windfalls

Some Negros pensioners were surprised when windfalls of P50,000 on the average entered their bank accounts following the Social Security System pension adjustment release last June 23.

Contrary to rumors, the large sums were not caused by a glitch but were due to the release of a total of P7.21 billion in pension adjustments to over 154,000 qualified retirees nationwide after the agency completed its special project in the manual verification and reposting members' contribution for the period 1985-1989.

Janice Diaz, SSS-Western Visayas Division senior communication analyst, said the pension adjustments resulted from the initiative to examine the five-year lumped contributions of members that were affected by the system upgrade in the late 1980s.

Majority of the Negros pensioners, especially those working in plantations, are already aware of the manual verification and the corresponding pension readjustment, she said.

Pensioners submitted individual requests for manual verification for possible adjustment before, but in 2011, SSS created a special team to focus on all records without the need of request submissions and pay whoever is qualified for the adjustment, she said.

She said the agency has sent out letters to qualified pensioners who received their pension adjustments, with the first tranche released last June.

She also said that not all pensioners are entitled to the adjustments since others whose contributions for 1985 to 1989 were already manually verified during the processing of their benefit application.

There were also cases where the reposting had no bearing on pension computation so there were no corresponding pension adjustments.

The second tranche of pension adjustments for death and disability pensioners under SSS is set to be released in December; and the third tranche for retirement, SS death and SS disability pensioners with a contingency date prior to May 24,1997 as well as those with EC pension adjustments are set in June 2017.

The verification of member's contributions is still ongoing, she said, and future payments for qualified pensioners can be expected.

Diaz said those who wish to verify or inquire about their pension may contact the SSS hotline for free at 1800-10-CALL-SSS (2255-777) or email at member_relations@sss.gov.ph.*KBC



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