I was checking through my to do list before the year ends and I thought I’d share this with you guys. So just bear with me.
I started doing part time freelance back in 2007 at that time I was working full time as a human switchboard (call center) and didn’t give a shit about things like SSS, Pag-Ibig, PhilHealth and tax and what not after all the company took care of the remittance for me.
Before I resigned May of last year I had a few worries, its a huge risk to go full time freelance I’d lose all the benefits I was accustomed to namely: SSS, PhilHealth, Pag-Ibig, and the health insurance package provided for the company.
SSS – I continued my contribution switching from “Privately Employed” to “Voluntary Member”. With my previous job my monthly SSS contribution was P1560, contribution rate is computed based on your basic salary. Back then my basic salary falls under this bracket (see: SSS Contribution Chart) You can choose to pay as much as P1560 or P312 per month that’s up to you. Those without an SSS number yet its an easy process and you can get your ID number the same day you work on processing it. Its the ID card that takes forever to get to you.
PhilHealth – this may not sound much but it helps in times of hospitalization. I updated my record from employed to voluntary member and every month I pay 100 PHP. Yes contribution is only a hundred bucks per month. For those of you married, only one spouse has to apply and the wife and kids will be placed as beneficiaries so they too will be covered in case they get hospitalized.
Pag-Ibig – am not sure really I continued this when I have no intention of applying for a housing loan but just in case I change my mind a few years from now I have this handy. Its P200 per month only.
Health Insurance – this is prolly the toughest. I was used to just going to any clinic here in Cebu to see a quack and just present the insurance card issued by my previous company as means of payment. I spent a lot of time thinking on this and researching on which provider to go for. I ended up with Kaiser, am paying a P2970 per month which gives me the ff: benefits.
Income Tax – this I still have to work on. Almost all of the freelancers I know do not give a shit about filing for income tax. Why pay it when the company you work for is not registered in the Philippines? Why pay it when you have the option not to? Why pay it when it just ends up in the pockets of corrupt government officials? But the thing is if you don’t declare your income the government thinks of your as unemployed hence you won’t be qualified to file for loans. ITR is an absolute requirement when filing for housing loans and what not.
Now am not sure what your plans are or if you just doing this freelance gig until something better comes along, or if your doing this part time or what. But as for me am doing this for the long haul, am a full time freelancer / grad school student and am just covering all basis. I don’t wanna end up finding myself in a retirable age without any government pension because I neglected to pay my SSS contribution.
Applying for everything above can seem a bit daunting because of the legwork involved but its worth it … just think of the big picture. I’m not sure if this helps you in anyway but thought I’d share it with you guys just the same.