Flexi-Fund Program for OFWs
The SSS established the Flexi-fund Program as a mechanism for OFWs to save a portion of their income abroad and maximize returns on their investments, serving as a tax-exempt pension-savings plan designed to supplement benefits under the regular coverage program.
The program was launched in July 2001, and later adopted as the National Provident Fund for OFWs in May 2002.
Flexi-Fund at a Glance
- Members’ flexi-fund savings are invested in fixed-income government securities; thus, earnings are guaranteed.
- Interest rates are based on average rates of SSS short-term peso placements or 91-day T-bills, whichever is higher.
- Early Withdrawal allowed anytime (full or partial)
- Annual Incentive Benefit (AIB) for active members, based on net income of the Fund at yearend
- Members may continue their FF savings even after overseas employment, provided that regular contribution remain at the maximum.
Membership. To qualify for Flexi-fund membership, the latest contribution of the OFW-member must be based on the maximum monthly salary credit (MSC) under the regular SSS coverage program (currently at P20,000).
Contributions. The terms of contribution payment are flexible, such that: any amount, not lower than P200, paid in excess of the required maximum monthly SSS contribution for the applicable period goes to the member’s Flexi-Fund account and earns interest. There are no requirements on initial deposit amount, maintaining balance and frequency of payment. Flexi-fund members may contribute on a monthly, quarterly, annual or intermittent basis, depending on capacity to save. The opportunity to contribute to Flexi-fund shall cease upon filing of a final claim (total disability, retirement, or death) under the regular SSS program.
Guaranteed earnings. The SSS Flexi-fund is invested in fixed-income securities. The interest rate used in the crediting of guaranteed earnings on members’ accumulated Flexi-fund contributions is the average rate of SSS’ short-term peso placements or 91-day Treasury bills (T-bills), whichever is higher, subject further to quarterly re-pricing. This ensures a transparent, better-yielding, and risk-free investment for OFW-members and to provide a guaranteed interest rate that is reflective of current market conditions
Guaranteed earnings are computed based on actual date of payment of Flexi-fund contributions, and credited to the member’s individual accounts every month-end. This means that earnings are compounded monthly (i.e., earnings at the end of the month are taken into account in the computation in the succeeding month), thus allowing for higher accumulation of funds.