Longer Maternity Leave For Women

Under Republic Act 1161 or the Social Security Act of 1997, women workers are only granted 60-day maternity leave for normal childbirth and 78-day maternity leave for caesarean. Senator Risa Hontiveros seeks to revise this law by expanding maternity leave. She authored Senate Bill 1305 or the Expanded Maternity Leave Act, which aims to grant longer leaves for working women and solo mothers. Instead of 60 days, working women will be given 120 days of maternity leave while solo mothers will be granted 150 days. 

SEC. 14-A. Maternity Leave Benefit.

- A female member who has paid at least three (3) monthly contributions in the twelve-month period immediately preceding the semester of her childbirth or miscarriage shall be paid a daily maternity benefit equivalent to one hundred percent (100%) of her average daily salary credit for sixty (60) days or seventy-eight (78) days in case of caesarian delivery, subject to the following conditions:

"(a) That the employee shall have notified her employer of her pregnancy and the probable date of her childbirth, which notice shall be transmitted to the SSS in accordance with the rules and regulations it may provide;

"(b) The full payment shall be advanced by the employer within thirty (30) days from the filing of the maternity leave application;

"(c) That payment of daily maternity benefits shall be a bar to the recovery of sickness benefits provided by this Act for the same period for which daily maternity benefits have been received;

"(d) That the maternity benefits provided under this section shall be paid only for the first four (4) deliveries or miscarriages;

"(e) That the SSS shall immediately reimburse the employer of one hundred percent (100%) of the amount of maternity benefits advanced to the employee by the employer upon receipt of satisfactory proof of such payment and legality thereof; and

"(f) That if an employee member should give birth or suffer miscarriage without the required contributions having been remitted for her by her employer to the SSS, or without the latter having been previously notified by the employer of the time of the pregnancy, the employer shall pay to the SSS damages equivalent to the benefits which said employee member would otherwise have been entitled to.

The bill is not only intended to working mothers as the father can also benefit from it when 30 days of the leave credits are allocated to them. The co-authors of the bill include Manny Pacquiao, Antonio Trillanes IV, Francis Pangilinan, Loren Legarda, Sonny Angara and Nancy Binay. The Senate approves the bill on its 3rd and final reading with a vote of 22-0.

Pinoy Attorney

Written by : Pinoy Attorney