Nation



By Melissa Luz T. Lopez
Reporter


Guidelines issued on pension for military retirees, veterans’ spouses




Posted on September 02, 2016


THE government will start paying additional pensions to World War II veterans and military retirees, following new guidelines released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).

World War II veterans at the Armed forces headquarters in this 2009 file photo -- AFP
The DBM and the Department of National Defense issued joint guidelines signed on Aug. 26, which provide for the release of P1,700 as a total administrative disability (TAD) pension for survivors and heirs of World War II veterans, as well as military retirees aged 80 and up.

“This joint circular is being issued to provide the guidelines and procedures on the payment of TAD pension arrears in the amount of P1,700/month to veterans, consistent with the requirements of the President’s Budget Action Message under RA (Republic Act) No. 10717,” read the Joint Implementing Rules and Regulations No. 1 published online (http://www.dbm.gov.ph/wp-content/uploads/Issuances/2016/IRR/IRRNo.1_Aug162016.pdf), as signed by Budget Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno and Defense Secretary Delfin N. Lorenzana.

The provision refers to a section under the P3.002-trillion national budget for 2016 signed into law by former president Benigno S. C. Aquino III.

Living war veterans under a list from the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO), surviving spouses of deceased World War II fighters, as well as military retirees 80 years old and higher are eligible for the additional pension.

Republic Act 7696 passed in 1994 provided for additional benefits for veterans, which included the payment of the TAD pension. However, funds for the purpose have not been earmarked in full until under this year’s budget.

The government will prioritize the spouses of dead combatants, who will get a one-time payment of P1,700 multiplied to the number of months the veteran is entitled to, based on the time when the veteran reached 70 up to his/her death, or counting from the law’s passage in 1994, whichever is lower.

Under the order, the PVAO must file a special budget request from the DBM before including the fresh grant to a pensioner’s payroll, which will be charged against the Pension and Gratuity Fund of the budget.

Once a release order is given, the PVAO must pay the beneficiary in one go within 30 days from receiving a disbursement order, according to the rules.