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Give 13th month pay on or before Dec. 24, employers reminded

With Christmas just a few days away, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III is reminding employers to give the mandatory 13th month pay to their employees.

“Reminder lang po sa ating mga employers huwag ninyong kalimutan, maliwanag ang batas, you have to give your employees their 13th month pay,” Bello said.

Under Presidential Decree 851, employers must give the 13th month pay not later than December 24.

The law also provides that 13th month pay “shall mean one twelfth (1/12) of the basic salary of an employee within a calendar year.”

Bello said this law also covers individuals working as househelp.

Employees who will not receive this benefit from their employers are encouraged to report to the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).

“The remedy is to report to DOLE and for DOLE to inspect and order the payment of 13th month pay,” Bello said.

“We will issue a writ of execution to be served by the sheriff. We can also garnish the bank account of the employer. We can further levy the personal and real property of the employer and have these sold in a public auction,” he added.

Ellice Chew, owner of restaurant Empanada Nation, said that she makes sure to give 13th month pay to her employees every December not only to comply with the law but to show her appreciation for their hard work.

“We need to take care of our employees by giving what is right at Christmas season din. It’s a season of giving. Nakikita mo na masaya sila kasi at least kahit wala silang ipon for the past months ngayon meron silang pambili ng extra,” she said.

Chief Cook Jay-Ar Morejon, Chew’s employee, said he is looking forward to receiving his 13th month pay next  week.

“Importante ang 13th-month pay lalo na ngayon na magbe-birthday yung anak ko at magpapasko,” he said. —KBK, GMA News