The Social Security System (SSS) is urging retirees to utilize the Pension Loan Program (PLP) to meet their urgent financial requirements rather than turning to loan sharks who charge exorbitant interest rates and need their ATM cards as collateral.
The PLP, which went into effect in September 2018, enables eligible retirees to borrow up to three, six, nine, or twelve times their basic monthly pension (BMP) plus the P1,000 extra benefit, with a maximum loan amount of P200,000. Furthermore, they must have a net take-home pension of at least 47.25 percent.
Pension loans of three and six times the pensioners’ BMP plus the P1,000 additional benefit have respective payment terms of six and 12 months, while pension loans of nine and 12 times the BMP plus the P1,000 additional benefit have a payment term of 24 months.
The PLP has an interest rate of 10 percent per annum. The first monthly amortization for pension loans is due on the second month after the loan was granted. Further, a one-percent service fee is waived as a means to subsidize the payment for the premium of the Credit Life Insurance (CLI) of the borrower.
To qualify for the loan program, a retiree-pensioner:
- Must be 85 years of age or below at the end of the last month of the loan term;
- Must have no deductions such as outstanding loan balance, benefit overpayment payable to the SSS, etc., from his/her monthly pension;
- Must have no existing advance pension under the SSS Calamity Assistance Package; and
- Must be receiving his/her regular monthly pension for at least one month and the status of pension is “Active”.
- PLP applications for first-time availees must be coursed through SSS branches, following community quarantine protocols and servicing guidelines (number coding system, dropbox system, or appointment system) implemented in them, if any.
On the other hand, retiree-pensioners who have previously availed of the program and have already paid their loans in full may submit their applications online through the E-Services tab of the My.SSS Portal in the SSS website (www.sss.gov.ph).
Based on its initial data, the SSS approved the release of P1.47 billion pension loans for33,007 retiree-pensioners from January to June 2021.
Of the said amount, P1.38 billion were approved for30,772 retiree-pensioners who filed their applications through SSS branches, while the remaining P96.62 million were approved for 2,235 retiree-pensioners who filed their applications online.
Currently, the SSS is working on enhancements to the online facility to also accommodate initial (first-time) PLP applications.