Unemployment Insurance or Involuntary Separation Benefit under the Social Security Act of 2018 and the DOLE Guidelines for CertificationAtty Elvin
Unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit under Section 14-B of the Social Security Act of 2018 (R.A. 11199) provides that an SSS member who is not over sixty (60) years of age who has paid at least thirty-six (36) months contributions the twelve (12) months of which should be in the eighteen-month period immediately preceding the involuntary unemployment or separation shall be paid benefits in the form of monthly cash payments equivalent to fifty percent (50%) of the average monthly salary credit for a maximum of two (2) months.
In case of concurrence of two or more compensable contingencies, only the highest benefit shall be paid, subject to the rules and regulations that Commission may prescribe. (Section 14-B, R.A. 11199).
On July 8, 2019, the SSS issued Circular No. 2019-011 or the Guidelines on the Payment of Unemployment Insurance or Involuntary Separation Benefit. (See the PDF version of SSS Circular No. 2019-011 here)
Unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit is a cash benefit granted to covered employees, including Kasambahays, and the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are involuntarily separated from employment.
The employee should have no unsettled unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit within the last three (3) years prior to the date of involuntary separation.
Involuntary separation may be occasioned by:
- Any of the authorized causes for termination of employee under Articles 298 and 299 of the Labor Code, as amended.
- Any of the causes under Article 399 of the Labor Code, as amended.
- Economic downturn.
- Natural or human-induced calamities/disasters
- Other analogous cases as may be determined by the DOLE and SSS.
The reasons for involuntary separation of OFWS however, shall be determined by the DOLE.
Claims for unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit shall be filed within one (1) year from the date of involuntary separation.
In Section 6 of the SSS Circular, one of the documentary requirements stated is the certification establishing the nature and date of involuntary separation from DOLE with either the Notice of Termination from Employer or Affidavit of Termination of Employment.
On July 29, 2019, the DOLE issued Department Circular 01, Series of 2019 on the Guidelines on the Issuance of DOLE Certification. This is a requirement for application for payment of unemployment insurance or separation benefit. (See the PDF Version of DOLE issued Department Circular 01, Series of 2019)
Applicants for certification shall be required to bring one (1) valid I.D. and a copy of the Notice of Termination issued by the employer. In the absence of Notice of Termination, an applicant may submit a duly notarized Affidavit of Termination of Employment to DOLE Field or Provincial Office, or Philippine Overseas Labor Office, as the case may be.(See Sample Affidavit of Termination here; DOLE’s PDF Version of the Affidavit; DOLE’s Sample Employer’s Certification of Separation)
Within one (1) day upon receipt and verification of application with complete documentary requirements, the DOLE Field or Provincial Office or POLO shall issue the certification.
The venue of filing of application for DOLE Certification shall be at the DOLE Field or Provincial Office where the company or employer is located or where the employees reside. In the case of OFWs, they may file their application at the POLO where their employer operates or at the DOLE Field or Provincial Office where the OFWs reside.