How to apply for the SSS Small Business Wage Subsidy (SBWS) program
The Social Security System (SSS) recently launched the Small Business Wage Subsidy (SBWS) program that will provide a wage subsidy of between PHP 5,000 to PHP 8,000 per month per eligible employee of affected small businesses. Here’s how employers can apply.
What is the SBWS program?
The Small Business Wage Subsidy (SBWS) program is a wage subsidy for affected employees of small businesses to help mitigate the impact of the quarantine in Luzon and various local government units. This wage subsidy shall be given for up to two months so that affected small businesses are able to retain their employees during the quarantine period.
How much is the subsidy?
The government, through the Social Security System (SSS), shall provide a wage subsidy of between PHP 5,000 to PHP 8,000 (based on the regional minimum wage) per month per eligible employee. The total aid of the program amounts to PHP 51 billion.
Who are eligible?
• Must be an employee of an eligible small business
• Must be employed and active as of March 1, 2020, but unable to work due to the ECQ
• Did not get paid by their employer for at least two weeks during the temporary closure or suspension of work in accordance with Labor Advisory No. 1, Series of 2020
• Can be of any contract status (e.g., regular, probationary, regular seasonal, project-based, fixed-term)
• Must be certified by the employer in the application as having met all the above criteria
Employees who have received a subsidy from the DOLE’s CAMP shall be eligible for only the first month of the SBWS to avoid duplication.
Who are not eligible?
• Working from home or part of the skeleton force
• On leave for the entire duration of the ECQ, whether with or without pay
• Already a recipient of SSS unemployment benefits, to avoid duplication
• Those who have settled or in-process SSS final claims (funeral, retirement, death, and total disability)
Who will submit the application?
The applications will be completed by the employer on behalf of their employees.
Deadline of applications?
The SSS will only be accepting applications from April 16, 2020, to April 30, 2020.
How can employers apply?
Do note that employers should check with the BIR website first at www.bir.gov.ph if they are pre-qualified for the SBWS. Employers should also have a My.SSS account. If they don’t have a My.SSS account, the employer has to register first at www.sss.gov.ph.
1) The employer needs to log-in to My.SSS account on the SSS website to initiate the application.
2) Click on the SBWS Menu Tab
3) Enter the alphanumeric Passcode as shown on the BIR website. The employer then provides his Tax Identification Number (TIN) and click “Proceed” to enter the application portal.
4) Upon successful login, SSS shall display the list of employees in the SBWS Module in the employer’s My.SSS account. The employer then selects the eligible employees by ticking the boxes beside their SS number.
If an employee is not in the SSS list, it means that the employee is not yet registered with the My.SSS facility, or that there is lacking information in their My.SSS account.
After selecting the eligible employees, the employer shall enter the TIN of each employee.
Once all eligible employees have been checked, the employer should click on the “Employer’s Undertaking” link to access the terms and conditions. The employer shall then tick the box to signify that he/she has read and agrees to the Employer Undertaking.
5) The employer must submit any of the listed supporting documents certifying the employees’ work and pay status (Employer Certification templates are available for downloading). These may be submitted via email to [email protected] or to the nearest SSS Branch.
From here the SSS automated system shall check and validate employee details and qualifications to the program. The SSS will then inform the employer through email the employees who are qualified, those qualified but lacking credentials, and those disqualified along with an explanation.
For qualified employees, the SSS will also provide the employer with the details when the subsidy shall be credited to their bank accounts or available for disbursement through remittance agents.
The SSS shall disburse the wage subsidy through the following payment channels:
• SSS UMID card enrolled as ATM
• PESOnet participating banks
• Union Bank Quick Card
• Electronic wallets such as PayMaya
• Cash pick-up through remittance partner agents
Take note of the relevant dates:
• Application period: April 16 to 30, 2020.
• First tranche of payout: May 1 to 15, 2020
• Second tranche of payout (may change depending on ECQ): May 16 to 31, 2020.
For additional details, you can check out the SSS Facebook post below: