Education is something that everyone should strive for because it is the one thing that no one can take away and can serve as a gateway to bigger opportunities such as employment or business opportunities which can alleviate a person’s situation. It can even help an entire family rise from poverty, which is an unfortunate reality here in the Philippines.
However, not every Filipino has the capability to afford quality education without assistance. Fortunately, there are available scholarships or Government programs that can lend financial assistance to those who require funding for their education.
The Social Security System (SSS) of the Philippines offers its Educational Assistance Loan Program (EALP) that helps fund the enrollment fees and other miscellaneous fees for college as wells as for technical and vocational courses. SSS beneficiaries and workers have the opportunity to seek financial aid or educational assistance through the EALP.
The SSS’s objectives with implementing the Educational Assistance Program are threefold:
- They aim to improve the accessibility of higher education by providing financial assistance to SSS members and beneficiaries.
- The improved access to higher education will help develop a large pool of educated professionals and skilled workers that can help enhance the country’s economic productivity by supporting the country’s industrial and agricultural expansion.
- The implementation of the EALP is also to complement the Philippine Government’s aim to expand the accessibility to higher education.
Funds Allocation and Resources of the EALP
The funding for the EALP came directly from both the National Government and the SSS themselves. The total fund allocation for the program is about 7.0 Billion PHP. 3.5 Billion PHP of which came from the National Government and the other 3.5 Billion PHP is provided the Social Security System of the Philippines.
Who can Benefit from SSS Education Loan?
Here is a list of who can benefit from the SSS education assistance loan:
- SSS Members
- Legal Spouse
- Child of a SSS Member
Including children of SSS members who are illegitimate or children who are legally adopted by the SSS member.
- Sibling of Unmarried SSS Member
Including the half-siblings of the SSS member.
Married members of the SSS are allowed to avail for up to two beneficiaries who may include the SSS member, their spouse, or their children (including illegitimate or legally adopted children).
It should be noted that no substitution of the beneficiary is allowed. The SSS member or borrower can apply for one beneficiary at a time for the EALP until the loan has been paid fully. The SSS member or borrower can reapply for the EALP after their loan has been paid fully. The SSS members or borrowers cannot apply for a second beneficiary to avail for the EALP if they are still paying for an existing beneficiary’s educational assistance loan from the EALP.
Students with scholars that reduces their tuition fees and miscellaneous fees to zero are excepted from becoming a beneficiary of the EALP.
Who are Eligible to borrow from the SSS Education Loan?
New applicants are can be eligible for the EALP as well as existing EALP borrowers, as stated in the previous section. Both types of borrowers must be either a currently employed member of the SSS, a currently employed contributing member of the SSS, or a voluntary member of the SSS.
The following requirement must be met by new or initial applicants to the EALP:
- Must be below 60 years old
- Must have a monthly income/monthly basic salary below 25,000 PHP
- Should have no overdue loans with the SSS. If the member has overdue loans, the amount should not exceed three (3) monthly loan amortization.
- Must have at least 36 monthly contributions to the SSS, six (6) of which must be within the last 12 months before the month when the EALP application was filed.
The following requirements must be met by existing EALP borrowers:
- Must not have any overdue loans
- Must have at least 6 monthly contributions to the SSS within the last 12 months before the month when the subsequent application for the EALP was filed.
What are the Requirements of the SSS Education Loan?
The following are requirements for initial EALP applicants:
- SSS ID or two valid IDs or documents of the borrowing member
- Accomplished Initial EALP Application Form
- Current school’s assessment of billing statement
- Proof of monthly salary or income of borrowing member
- Proof of the member’s relationship to the beneficiary
The following are requirements for subsequent EALP applicants:
- SSS ID or two valid Ids or documents of the borrowing member
- Accomplished Subsequent EALP Application Form
- Assessment or billing statement issued by the school of borrowing member or beneficiary
How Much Financial Assistance Can Be Borrowed from the SSS Education Loan?
The National Government and the Social Security System will shoulder the funds of the EALP equally. The amount of borrowed funds depends on the course and degree/program the beneficiary is enrolled in.
For Degree Course
A maximum of 20,000 PHP for whichever is lower between per semester/trimester/quarter term, actual tuition/miscellaneous fees, or assessment balance on a cash basis. The allocation funds will be rounded off to the next higher 100 PHP.
- For Four (4) Year Degree Program – the beneficiary will be fully allocated an amount of 160,000 PHP. The maximum number of availments shall be either 8 semesters, 12 trimesters, or 16 quarters.
- For Five (5) Year Degree Program – the beneficiary will be fully allocated an amoung of 200,000 PHP. The maximum number of availments shall be either 10 semesters, 15 trimesters, or 20 quarters.
For Technical or Vocational Course
Or a 2-year course, a maximum of 10,000 PHP for whichever is lower between per semester/trimester/quarter term, actual tuition/miscellaneous fees, or assessment balance on a cash basis. The allocated funds will be rounded off to the next higher 100 PHP.
- For Semester Program – the beneficiary will be fully allocated an amount of 40,000 PHP with a maximum number of availments of 4 semesters.
- For Trimester Program – the beneficiary will be fully allocated an amount of 60,000 PHP with a maximum number of availments of 6 semesters.
Interest Rates, Charges, and Penalties of the SSS Education Loan
- National Government (NG) portion has an interest of zero percent (0%) interest.
- The Social Security System (SSS) potion has a 6% interest rate per annum. This is based on the diminishing principal balance until the loan is fully paid.
- Consolidated loan – this is composed of all the released loans plus the accrued interests to which the SSS portion bears 6% of the interests.
- There is a 2% Maintenance Charge of the consolidated loan balance.
- There is a 1% increase penalty per month for any unpaid amortization.
- A 300 PHP service fee will be issued for any request for a replacement of an EALP check.
Shall be any excess expenses of the tuition fee or miscellaneous fees, the borrowing member or beneficiary will be the ones to shoulder amount costs.
Manner of Release of the SSS Education Loan
The check is payable to the school of the beneficiary where they are enrolled. It shall be released to the borrowing member or to their authorized representative at the SSS branch where the application for the EALP was filed and processed.
Subsequent loan releases in the forms of checks shall be made with another submission of the EALP application every school term until the completion of the course or until the allocated loan amount is exhausted.
Which Courses and Schools are Eligible for the SSS EALP?
Any universities and colleges and their offered undergraduate courses are considered eligible for the EALP given that they are recognized by one of the following entities:
- Commission of Higher Education (CHED) – applicable for degree courses
- Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) – applicable for technical and vocational courses
- Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) – applicable for aviation-related courses
- Institutions duly recognized by the Philippine Government
Terms of Repayment for the SSS Education Loan
For Degree Courses, the repayment term is up to 5 years while for technical or vocational courses, the repayment term is up to 3 years.
The repayment of the SSS Education Loan starts on the month when the EALP was consolidated.
- After 18 months for a semester program
- After 15 months for a trimester program
- After 14 months and 15 days for a quarter program
Below is a list of the scheduled term based on the principal loan:
- 20,000 or below – 1 year
- 20,001 to 40,000 – 2 years
- 40,001 to 60,000 – 3 years
- 60,001 to 80,000 – 4 years
- Above 80,000 – 5 years
If there is any unpaid Education Assistance Loan balance, it shall be deducted to the future benefits of the SSS member.
How to Pay the SSS Education Loan
You can pay for the Educational Assistance Loan through the following options below:
- SSS Accredited Banks
- SSS Branch Teller Facility or Cahier
- Salary Deduction by Employer
Revised Implementing Guidelines for the Educational Loan Program (EALP). (2017, May 25). Retrieved from http://sssanswers.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/ci2017_005.pdf
How to Avail of the SSS Educational Loan? (2017, September 2). Retrieved from http://sssanswers.com/sss-educational-loan/