Everything was moving smoothly, until Friday, November 11, when the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) announced that they will be suspending the processing and issuance of the overseas employment certificate (OEC) for new hires in order to investigate reports of illegal recruitment.
The OEC is a requirement for OFWs to work abroad.
According to the announcement, Jean will have to wait for 15 working days starting November 13 until December 1 for her to finally be able to process her OEC.
“This is just a suspension for 15 days,” DOLE Secretary Sylvestre Bello III said during the press conference announcing the suspension.
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POEA exempts returning OFWs from OEC requirement
Filipino Workers Abroad who will be returning to their former employer, or “Balik Manggagawa,” will no longer be required to secure an overseas employment certificate (OEC) starting next month, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) announced on Monday. The POEA announced, in accordance with POEA Governing Board Resolution No. 12, Series of 2016, issued following President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to streamline the processes in deploying OFWs.
Overseas Filipino workers returning to their jobs or same employers abroad are now exempted from paying travel tax as well as securing overseas employment certificate and paying Philippine Overseas Employment Administration processing fee. Click the Memorandum below.
FOR MORE ANSWER TO YOUR QUESTION: 20+ Most Asked Questions About OEC Exemption
The implementation of the resolution “on an experimental basis” will start on September 15, 2016.
Covered by the OEC exemption are returning workers who are:
- OFWs who are returning to the same employer and jobsite and with existing record/s in the POEA data base;
- And those hired through the Government Placement Branch, or the POEA’s in-house recruitment facility for Filipinos aspiring to work abroad.
Note: To qualify for the exemption, however, the returning worker must first register through the BM Online Facility before departure. Registration is free on www.bmonline.ph.
Who will continue to Process OEC requirements?
2. Visiting OFWs who will go back to the same employer, but different job site.
3. Visiting OFWs who will go back abroad to work for a new employer.
To qualify for the exemption, however, the returning worker must first register through the BM Online Facility before departure. Registration is free.
The information that the worker will provide will be stored in the POEA database and transmitted to the Bureau of Immigration (BI) to serve as reference for the Immigration officer who will validate if the worker is qualified for the exemption.
Those who will not be exempted from the requirement will be directed to the BM online webpage where they may register again and set an appointment with their preferred POEA center.
Those who will go to the BI counter at the airport without registering online, meanwhile, will be referred to the Labor Assistance Counter (LAC) for evaluation.
Travel tax and terminal fee
The returning worker will also be exempt from paying travel tax and terminal fee upon presentation of any of the following documents to the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) and the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA):
1. Passport valid at least 6 months from the date of departure
2. Valid Work Visa / Work Permit or Equivalent Document
3. Proof of Employment returning to same employer
(ie., Employment Contract, Certificate of Employment / Company ID / Pay Slip)
SEE ALSO: How to Get an iDOLE OFW ID Card
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