Workers to get bigger 13th month, X-mas bonuses

Workers from both public and private sectors will be getting bigger 13th month pay and Christmas bonuses because of the law that raised the tax exemption cap of bonuses and benefits.

Beginning this year, pursuant to Republic Act 10963, the 13th month pay and other benefits, including productivity incentives and Christmas bonuses, are exempted from tax if they do not exceed PHP90,000.

“Buong-buo nang maiuuwi ng mga empleyado ang kanilang bonus sa kani-kanilang pamilya. Tiyak na makadaragdag ito sa kanilang panggastos para sa pagdiriwang ng Pasko at Bagong Taon (Employees will be taking home wholly their bonus to their families. It would surely help in their expenses during Christmas and New Year),” Senator Sonny Angara said.

Angara is also responsible for the law that raised the tax exemption of 13th month pay and other benefits up to PHP82,000 in 2015.

Before RA 10653 was signed into law three years ago, only bonuses not exceeding PHP30,000 were tax-exempt.

According to the Department of Budget and Management, government workers will receive their 13th month pay starting November 15.

Meanwhile, for private sector employees, the 13th month pay should be given not later than December 24.

The 13th month pay must be equivalent to one-twelfth of the basic salary of an employee within a calendar year.

The senator reminded employers that they must pay their rank-and-file employees 13th month pay, regardless of the nature of their employment and whatever method their wages are being paid, provided they worked for at least one month during a calendar year.

“Hindi lamang mga regular na empleyado ang dapat makakuha ng 13th month pay. Kahit mga contractual, casual, fixed term, probationary, seasonal employees ay dapat din makatanggap ayon sa ating Labor Code (Not only those regular employees who should receive the 13th month pay but contractual, casual, fixed term, probationary, seasonal employees should also get the benefit based on our Labor Code),” Angara said.