Employers in the Philippines reminded to pay 13th-month wages

Failure to do so by December 24 may result in legal consequences, warned the Philippines’ Department of Labour and Employment (DOLE).
By: | December 21, 2022

In response to the mandatory 13th-month pay in the Philippines, Bienvenido Laguesma, Secretary of DOLE, clarified that no employer is exempted from paying their employees their 13th-month wages, regardless of the length of their employment.

“We know that the companies, especially those in the category of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), are still struggling because they have not fully recovered, but I just want to say that there is no exemption from paying the 13th-month pay,” he said.

Reiterating that all employers must pay their employees their 13-month pay by 24 December 2022, Laguesma warned that those who fail to pay the 13th-month wages on time or skip to pay it altogether will face consequences of the law.

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Employers who are unable to meet this obligation are advised to contact DOLE for assistance to avoid legal responsibility under the country’s labour code. Furthermore, he encouraged small businesses that require financial assistance to tap into the Small Business Corporation programme by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to pay their employees’ 13th-month wages.

The regulation on 13th-month pay was first introduced in 1975, aimed at resolving issues related to minimum wage, which no longer matched the cost of living.