Sotto pushes for 14th month pay
As Christmas draws near, a lawmaker is pushing for the passage of a bill requiring employers to release a 14thmonth pay to workers on top of the usual bonuses approved under labor laws.
Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III filed “The 14th Month Pay Law” or Senate Bill No. 1645 which specifically requires employers to assign a 14th month pay on top of the 13th month pay they give to regular employees.
Sotto said this would help defray the needs of ordinary workers faced with the ever-increasing prices of basic commodities and services in the country.
“This will make the maxim attributed to President Ramon Magsaysay become a reality—‘those who have less in life should have more in law’,” quoted Sotto.
More often than not, Sotto said the 13th month pay is gobbled up by Christmas expenses and is not enough. He also said the recent P10 wage increase is too small to cover the daily expenses of ordinary Filipino workers.
“Wages have invisibly decreased due to the rise in prices of basic commodities,” he added.
The bill, he said, covers all government and non-government rank and file employees regardless of their employment status, designation and irrespective of the method by which their wages are paid provided that they have worked at least one month during the calendar year.
Under the bill, Sotto proposes that employers release the 13th month pay not later than June 14th and the 14th month pay shall be paid not later than December 24th of every year.
Provided, however that the frequency of payment of this monetary benefits may be the subject of agreement between employer and employee or any recognized collective bargaining agent (CBA) of employees, the senator said.
The measure also suggests that the minimum amount of the 14th month pay shall not be less than 1/12 of the total basic salary earned by the employee within the calendar year.
The Secretary of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) shall promulgate the implementing rules of this law within 60 days from the enactment of this law.
Once passed into law, any provision of this Act is declared invalid or unconstitutional, other provisions hereof which are not affected thereby shall continue to be in full force and effect.
“Any law, presidential decree or issuance, executive order, letter of instruction, administrative order, rule or regulation contrary to or inconsistent with any provision of this Act as hereby amended or modified accordingly,” the bill stated.