Saturday, December 3 2016

VietNamNews

Employers must be sued over insurance debts: officials

Update: November, 17/2016 - 09:20
None of enterprises that have delayed or avoided paying social insurance for their employees have been brought into court although labour unions, on behalf of the employees, have the right to sue them. — Photo thesaigontimes.vn

HÀ NỘI – None of enterprises that have delayed or avoided paying social insurance for their employees have been brought into court although labour unions, on behalf of the employees, have the right to sue them, the Việt Nam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL) said yesterday.

Speaking at a conference about measures to crack down on insurance debtors yesterday, VGCL Vice Chairman Mai Đức Chính said that labour unions were given legal tools in January to take enterprises to court.

Việt Nam Social Insurance and the VGCL even signed a co-operation agreement to provide data and ensure the rights and benefits of employees.

The VGCL had required localities to sign commitments to strengthen debt collection and press suits if necessary.

However, 16 localities had not yet signed their commitment and none of the debtors have been sued so far, he said.

As regulated, every enterprise with more than 10 employees was supposed to jointly pay for workers three types of insurance, namely social insurance, health insurance and unemployment insurance.

However, many intentionally ignored, delayed or refused to pay, according to the official.

Việt Nam Social Insurance reports show that accumulated social insurance debt in the past ten months was some VNĐ9.55 trillion (US$382 million). Debt of more than three months total VNĐ6.8 trillion ($272 million), accounting for 72 per cent of the total.

The total deb for the three types of insurance was VNĐ14.2 trillion ($568 million), an increase of 0.2 per cent compared to the same period last year.

 By November 15, only 78 per cent of total debts had been collected, seriously affecting employee benefits.

Under the Law on Social Insurance, employers must pay 17 per cent of their employees’ monthly salaries and employees pay six per cent. With this cover, employees can enjoy financial support when they are sick and unable to work.

Nguyễn Trí Đại, Head of Việt Nam Social Insurance’s Social Insurance Department, said enterprises avoid paying insurance either because they are in financial troubles or because they are unaware of their legal duty.

Lax management of social insurance companies in localities also contributes to the problem, he added, citing a company in southern An Giang Province as an example. The company failed to collect debts for more than 60,000 local beneficiaries of social welfare since early January last year.

Representatives of cities and provinces say a shortage of human resources, complicated suing procedures and a shortage of guideline on suing were the main reasons that labour unions hesitate to sue on behalf of workers.

To solve the problem, vice chairman of the VGCL Chính asked labour unions to hasten the completion of suits and relevant documents over insurance debtors and transfer them to the people’s courts.

Any difficulties during the procedures must be reported to the VGCL.

He requested each locality to get between five to ten lawsuits to the people’s court by the end of this year.

Việt Nam Social Insurance would co-operate with VGCL to set up teams to supervise implementation of the task in localities, he said.

State-owned firms with large numbers of labourers, especially in the fields of transport, mechanics and textiles and garments, have been guilty of violations. Strong measures such as fines of up to VNĐ30 million ($1,650) do not seem to deter the debtors: many would rather pay these low fines than their social insurance debts. – VNS

INBOX: Hà Nội to curb health facilities overspending

HÀ NộI – The Hà Nội’s Department of Health, in co-operation with the city’s health insurance fund, will inspect about 50 health facilities overspending their health insurance funds in the past nine months.

The inspectors will determine why the cost and frequency of treatment at certain facilities have increased. Prescriptions and other medical regimen will also be monitored for abuse or profiteering from the health insurance fund.

According to the city’s health insurance fund, the overspending of the fund was 1 per cent. As many as 73 hospitals exceeded the fund by a total of more than VNĐ200 billion (US$8 million).

To curb overspending, the city has asked the inspection unit of health insurance funds at hospitals to strengthen operations and refuse to pay for costs failing to meet the fund’s requirements.

The city’s People’s Committee has required localities to reach health insurance coverage for 80 per cent of the population by the end of this year and 90 per cent by 2020. – VNS

 

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