DOLE: Private firms have until Dec. 24 to give 13th-month pay

Private sector employers have until Christmas Eve to release the 13th-month pay of their workers, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said Wednesday.

“This is a reminder to our employers not to forget. The law is clear that you have to give your employees on or before Christmas Day their 13th-month pay. It doesn’t matter if you’re earning or not, you are mandated by law. Employees are entitled to 13th-month pay on or before December 25. There are other employers who released half of it middle of the year but they should give it,” Bello said in an interview.
He added that the benefit cannot be given in kind. “It can’t be. It should be given in cash,” he said.

However, Bello said companies hit by calamities are exempted from giving the cash benefit.

Under Presidential Decree 851, private sector workers should be given a 13th-month pay that should be released not later than December 24.

However, an employer may give to his or her employees half of the 13th-month pay before the opening of the regular school year and the remaining half on or before December 24 every year.

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