The Social Security Act requires employers and employees to make contributions to the Social Security Fund on a monthly basis. The Social Security Fund is administered by the Social Security Office, a division of the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare.
According to the Act, permanent employees aged 15-60 years who are not exempted from the scheme have a legal obligation to make a contribution to the Social Security fund. Employers withhold their employees’ contributions as part of the payroll process and then contribute the equal amount separately for themselves.
As of January 2013 onwards, the current employee contribution rate represents 5% of pre-tax base salaries, with the maximum contribution being 600 THB per person (employer’s contribution will mirror the same amount and thus increasing the overall contribution of the employee and employer to a maximum of 1,200 THB).
As with withholding tax, the social security contributions are to be made on a monthly basis and paid by the 15th day of the subsequent month. Employers have a duty to register new employees with the fund within 30 days of the commencement of their employment, however there are some exceptions – employees aged 60 and above are exempted from the scheme, and so are salespeople working on commission and new-applying company directors.
Employees and employers participating in this programme are able to deduct their respective contributions from personal or corporate income tax. Other benefits of the Social Security Fund Membership are as follows:
1. NON-OCCUPATIONAL INJURY OF SICKNESS
In case of injury or sickness unrelated to the employment, the membership includes partial of full cover of the costs of medical examinations, medical treatments, hospital lodgings and meals, medicine and medical supplies, ambulance and others. Holders of the membership possess a social security card they may present at nominated government hospitals to receive the subsidised medical care. Income replacement compensation at 50% of base wages is available to qualifying members.
As in the previous benefit, maternity benefits offer partial or full cover of the same treatments/procedures for participating members and their spouses. Moreover, a leave allowance is available to qualifying members at 50% of basic wages.
3. NON-WORK RELATED INVALIDITY
Same as Non-Occupational Injury of Sickness.
4. DEATH BENEFITS
Nominated beneficiaries (spouse, children, parents or others) of a qualifying deceased member can claim a funeral allowance.
5. CHILD BENEFITS
Members are entitled to prescribed benefits for up to two children under 15 years of age to cover living expenses, tuition fees, medical and where applicable other necessary expenses of their children.
6. OLD AGE BENEFITS
Non-working members aged 55 and above and whose contribution period exceeded 180 months are entitled to a pension/lump sum pay-out.
7. UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS
Members who contributed to the Social Security Fund at least six times in the 15 months leading up to being unemployed can claim benefits for the duration of the period that they are actively seeking employment.
For more information, visit the website of the Social Security Office.