Providing the needs and supporting the education of your children as a solo parent is a big struggle since you need to shoulder all these things on your own. Fortunately, the government has an aid for this important matter through Republic Act No. 8972 better known as “An Act Providing for Benefits and Privileges to Solo Parents and their Children, Appropriating Funds Thereof and For Other Purposes.”
It states that it’s essential for the state to provide programs of services, benefits, and privileges for single parent groups.
Who is considered a solo parent according to the law?
As defined by RA 8972, a legitimate solo parent are as follows:
2. A parent who’s left solo or alone and now solely responsible of parenthood due to the following situations:
b. Spouse is a detainee or serving a sentence for a criminal conviction for at least one (1) year.
c. The spouse is physically or mentally incapable as certified by a public medical practitioner.
d. At least one (1) year legal separation from spouse, ensuring that the solo parent is entrusted with the custody of the children.
e. A proper declaration of nulled marriage, either decreed by court our by church, provided that the solo parent has the sole custody with the children.
3. An unmarried father/mother who opt to keep and raised his/her own child/children instead of giving the custody to a welfare institution or chose other people to take care of the child/children.
4. Any other person who took full responsibility in providing parental care and support to a child or children.
5. Any family member who took full responsibility in being the head of the family as a result of death, abandonment, disappearance or prolonged absence of the parents or solo parent.
What criteria for support?
Any solo parent whose monthly income falls short below the poverty threshold in accordance to the rule set by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) and also subject to an assessment with the DSWD worker in the area shall have rights for an assistance. A solo parent can directly inquire from the following agencies to avail their services:
- Health Services (DOH)
- Educational Services (CHED, TESDA)
- Housing (NHA)
- Parental Leave (Employer, DOLE, CSC)
Take note that any solo parent whose salary is above the poverty threshold shall only have limited benefits such as; flexible work schedule, parental leave and other benefits to be established by the DSWD.
What are the requirements of getting a Solo Parent ID?
1. All applicants who’ll administer a single parent ID shall bring the following requirements to the City/Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office:
- Birth Certificates of Children (Note that you can avail birth certificate online)
- A copy of Death Certificate of Spouse
- Supporting documents
C. Income tax return or any financial document stating the income level of a solo parent.
2. The social worker will receive or ensure that all the documents stated above are complete before registering the solo parent with corresponding case number in the log book Registry of Solo Parents and filling out the necessary information for Solo Parent Application Form.
The issuance of ID will be given 30 days after filing the said requirements. Note that this is valid for one (1) year only and there will be a renewal after its expiration.
What are the benefits of the Solo Parent ID?”
Here’s the overview of the lone parent benefits:
1. There is tax incentives for solo parents with child/children who have disability.
2. Flexibility on work schedule
3. Avoidance of work discrimination
4. Parental leave
A seven (7) days of leave shall be granted to any Solo Parent employee given the following circumstances:
b. It should be availed every year and is not convertible to cash. It will be forfeited if it’s not availed within the year it is given.
c. It can be availed continuously or through a staggered basis as long as it is approved by the Administrator of the Solo Parent’s company. Needless to say, the solo parent should file a parental leave form one (1) week before availing the solo parent leave.
d. The Solo Parent can also avail a parental leave if;
- Attending important events of the child such as birthday, graduation and similar events;
- Attend enrollment and PTA meeting and alike;
- Attend to the needs of the child when it comes to medical social, spiritual, and recreational aspect;
- Other circumstance that needs the presence of parents as part of their duty and responsibility to the child/children.
5. Granting of parental leave may be determine by the head of agency/office concerned. It can also conduct applicable investigation to ensure if there are any ground subjected for termination and withdrawal of the privilege provided.