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New law grants solo parents additional benefits

By AYIE LICSI Published Jun 28, 2022 3:18 pm

Solo parents will now get additional benefits, including subsidies, discounts, and added work leaves, under a new law.

The Republic Act No. 11861, titled the Expanded Solo Parents Welfare Act, lapsed into law on June 4 without the signature of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Under the new law, solo parents who earn a minimum or less than the minimum wage are entitled to a monthly cash subsidy of P1,000.

Those earning less than P250,000 will also receive a 10% discount and value-added tax exemption on baby products such as milk, diapers, vaccines, and medicine until the child is six years old. Senior citizens or persons with disability acting as solo parents can also avail of the discounts on top of their other benefits.

In addition, solo parents working in the government or private sector are entitled to a seven-day paid parental leave each year.

The measure also directs the Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education, and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority to provide scholarships to qualified children of solo parents.

Solo parent is defined by the measure as someone with sole parental care of a child/children due to rape, death or criminal conviction of a spouse, legal or de facto separation from a spouse, and abandonment. 

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A parent, with a spouse working overseas for at least a year, belonging to a low/semi-skilled worker category, a legal guardian solely providing support, and a pregnant woman solely giving parental care are considered as solo parents.

To avail of the benefits, individuals who fall into the categories must get a Solo Parent ID which can be procured at their local government unit's Solo Parent Office.