Retirement Benefits

Opinions Unlimited

by Atty. Tony(APA) Acyatan (Atty. APA – chairman of Acyatan & Co., CPAs-DFK International is president of PICPA in 1990 and ASEAN Federation of CPAs (1998-2000) and Accountancy Hall-of-Famer (2006).

INVESTORS: Starting this month and up to October 31, more retirees (resignees) will leave the government service – including those from government-owned or controlled corporations.  Many of them will receive retirement benefits – payable by the Government Service Insurance System.  The Administration should see to it that GSIS will have available funds with which to pay the service insurance proceeds.

Funds paid to retirees could be used for investments – either through the stock exchange, or for their own business ventures.  The government can assist them by providing guidelines as to where new worthwhile investments can be found.  Supplemental financial support should also be made available to these new categories of investors who are mostly experienced and smart.

GSIS STATUS: Before the national elections, GSIS has been successful in dodging complaints from members – alleging that their computer programs are at fault.  Government retirees – many of them teachers – are waiting for their benefits.  They suspect that GSIS does not have liquid funds to pay their claims. Indeed, if the problem was just with computers – it could have been remedied long ago.

A major revamp at GSIS is called for.  The image of the institution is so low that government personnel are fearful that when they retire – their benefits may not just be delayed but could be entirely lost if their insurer (GSIS) becomes bankrupt.  How can we expect those in government to perform their services well – when the very terminal benefits they are aspiring for are not sure in coming?

ACCOUNTING: Both the BIR and Customs can improve their tax collections by coordinating closely with the professionals assisting the target taxpayers.  External auditors and custom brokers know the cheating taxpayers.  Some of our new transferee clients “got burned” because their former external auditors did not perform their job well so accounting errors and omissions went into their submitted financial statements.

“Getting burned” means deficiency taxes assessed by the Bureau of Internal Revenue for errors that even just a simple analysis would bring out the infractions.  These result in basic taxes payable PLUS penalties and interest.  But the bigger loss surfaces on the findings that company personnel – including supervisors and managers took advantage of faulty financial reporting, and committed qualified theft or estafa.  Deficient records are useless to prove the crimes!

LGU CHEATS: Indeed, the chair that Sec. Jesse Robredo now sits on is a “hot seat”.  There are so many aspects of governance that needs reformation.  Our government system is filled up by  pockets of graft and corruption – and many of them are obtaining in local governments.  The LGU “clearance system” is a rich source of illegal revenues.

Visible examples: Franchises for tricycle operations, motor vehicle parking rights, conversion to residential subdivision, building constructions and business permits, Declarations for tax purposes and land titling are also commonly “taxed” by government personnel.  The positions of LGU Assessors and Registers of Deeds are highly coveted positions. Of course the most common and favorite source of illegal revenues is jueteng payola,

PROVERBS: The man who bows the lowest in the presence of God stands the straightest in the presence of sin.

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