Nov 20, 2015 News
– Launches programme for online checking of contributions
By Kiana Wilburg
The National Insurance Scheme (NIS) has now opened its system to public scrutiny, with the initiation of a programme which allows persons to check their contributions online.
The Online Contribution Checking System (OCCS) was launched yesterday at the Cara Lodge Hotel. There, General Manager Doreen Nelson and NIS Chairman Surendra Persaud, explained at length, the purpose of the OCCS and how it works.
“Over the years, NIS has recognized the need for a more convenient and easily accessible means for checking contributions, and to more efficiently deliver this service,” Nelson said, adding that the OCCS was seen as an imperative development.
She explained that the system is an innovative option for accessing contribution updates. The system, which was initially launched in April 2015, now comes with the addition of online query functions.
Queries are made on the system via the internet and are responded to within a week’s time. The General Manager said that the web interface connects to an offline version of the database used by the NIS. Generally, the database is updated quarterly, with extractions from the live NIS database.
Nelson said that to gain access to contribution details, users must provide a unique login credential that is linked to their individual NIS records.
Also available on the website is the ability to have printable NIS forms in PDF format for download, as well as the Scheme’s Annual Reports, which date as far back as the 1960s.
The NIS Information Technology team then explained the method of accessing contributions online.
A male representative said, “Visit the Online Contribution website at contributions.nis.org.gy and then select on the “Create new account link.” This is then followed by completing and submitting the registration form. Do note that your NIS number must have no space when entering it on the registration form. The administrator will then receive the information and approve the account within two to three days.”
He added, “Once approved, an email will be sent to the user with their login details. Once a new password is selected, the user can access their contribution records by selecting the “Check NIS Contributions” link. The user will also be able to check their bio data by selecting the respective option in the Contribution Information screen.”
Addressing members of the media, the NIS Chairman discussed the concept and how it works as well as the social security benefits offered.
“A contributor makes contributions and this goes into a fund, and as a result of those contributions, they then become eligible to receive it based on certain conditions as dictated in the law. Who becomes a contributor? The law says if you are between age16 and 60 and you are working, then by law you are required to be registered and to contribute to the NIS,” Persaud said.
He continued, “It doesn’t matter if you’re self-employed or not, you are all required to contribute to the scheme. If you are self-employed, that responsibility lies with you to ensure you make those contributions, and if you are employed then the employer is required by law to deduct that contribution and to add the employer’s information and submit both of these to the NIS.”
The new online system, he noted, will also allow contributors the chance to easily ascertain whether their employers are paying their NIS.
The Chairman then emphasized that persons should not allow their employer to convince them in any way that there is no need to pay NIS.
As it relates to benefits paid by the NIS, Persaud stated, “We have benefits, and the most widely known one is pension… or the old age pension. As many of you may be aware, you receive this pension as a result of your contributions: but how many are aware that your pensions can actually turn out to be 60 percent of your wage? There is also the sickness benefit.”
He added, “Are you aware that if you become sick whilst employed and then become terminally incapable of work, you are entitled to receive benefits from NIS, and it can be 70 percent of wage? What about industrial benefits from accidents while on the job? We provide that too. There is also the maternity benefit. Are you aware that we pay this for approximately 13 weeks? Yes we do, and all these things can be found on the revamped website.”
The Chairman also expressed his disappointment in the low number of registered self-employed persons who are not paying NIS. He insisted that this must and will be addressed, even if the NIS has to “spend money behind this cause… and we will.”
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