Liquidator denies complaints of delays in payments
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—The designated liquidator of Prudentialife Plans Inc. (PPI) has denied allegations that plan holders were finding it difficult to get payments.
The San Diego, Ycasiano, Macia, Estroc, Castañeda, Sanchez (Symecs) Law Office said the allegations came from a few disgruntled plan holders.
Contrary to the allegations, personnel of Symecs were able to properly service plan holders despite their huge numbers. PPI has 245,000 holders of education, pension and memorial plans.
“While the system is imperfect, all the staffs have entertained the plan holders cordially, even if they themselves were subjected to much verbal abuse,” Symecs said in an e-mail sent to the Inquirer by Dionne Sanchez, one of the partners.
Symecs also belied reports it was being paid an enormous amount out of the remaining trust fund of PPI. It said it was getting P200,000 a month.
A group of plan holders, called Prudential Warriors, claimed that Symecs would be paid more than P200 million, equivalent to at least 4 percent of the amount to be liquidated.
“Symecs only receives a mere P200,000 a month, VAT-inclusive, for a seven-lawyer office that has basically taken over what remains of Prudentialife. (It) has implemented a liquidation and distribution of this magnitude, and has spent countless hours liaising with plan holders, complying with IC directives, etc.,” the law office said.
Chris Rafal, head of the public assistance department of the Insurance Commission (IC), said payment to the liquidator was not being charged to the trust fund of PPI. The trust fund is meant to service only the claims of plan holders, he said.
Rafal said the IC was tapping other remaining assets of PPI to cover the payment to Symecs.
He also clarified reports on the amounts as a percentage of their total premium payments that plan holders were scheduled to receive.
Rafal said the 19 percent to be received by educational plan holders, the 40 percent by pension plan holders, and the 80 percent by memorial plan holders were based on the total amount that can be recovered from the liquidation of both “liquid” and “nonliquid” assets of PPI.
The IC defines the nonliquid assets of PPI as its securities investments, including stocks, corporate bonds and government securities.
The IC said PPI’s nonliquid assets were last valued at P3.085 billion. But it said the amount to be raised from the sale of these assets would depend on how much potential buyers would be willing to pay.
Rafal said plan holders should not be surprised if the value of the checks they received in the first installment did not match the announced percentage plan holders ought to get out of the liquidation.
He made the clarification amid queries from plan holders who had already gotten checks and who thought they received the wrong amounts.—Michelle V. Remo