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.

  • For Latest Update of OEC! Please type on Google New OEC ofwmoney.org

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?

1. First time OFWs
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

Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.



  1. Im a teacher in Thailand for over 9 years now.Is it acceptable that I only present my VISA,WORK PERMIT & EMPLOYMENT CONTRACT?since my school not required us for company ID & PAYROLL SLIP.Im going back to the Philippines on October 6.&return in my jobsite on Oct.21.Can you tell me where should I go and are more documents to present in the airport?Thanks.

  2. Sir,madam , i will be going for my annual vacatio leave this coming august 31 2016 and coming back with the same sponsor do i have to secure an oec?

  3. Hi mam I will back in Dubai on 20 but my problem is my contract because my campany not give only my visa page in my passport that I hold.so how can I get OEC it’s OK f only my passport.ticket and my ID to representative document to get OEC tomorrow in POEA plan help me.

  4. just clarification it seems that most message i read in this site is confusing this is if you want to avail exemption of travel tax and terminal fees just any of the following .
    valid work visa
    Work permit
    Valid employment contract
    Valid company ID
    Recent payroll slip
    Other equivalent document
    take note not all of them, if there is one available example if you have already valid working visa enough for you ta avail the exemption of the travel tax and terminal fees.

  5. Hello….mam/sir…..ask kulng po f need kupa ang oec.nagbakasyun lng po ako at babalik sa Oct.9 sa dati ko parin employer ako babalik….need ko po malaman f need kupa ang oec…thanks po…

    • Qualified Overseas Filipino Workers;
      *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.
      *To qualify for the exemption, however, the returning worker must first register through the BM Online Facility before departure.

  6. ask ko lng po…im currently working po dito sa saudi then ngapply ako sa australia and about to start working there nextweek so hindi nako mkakauwi sa pilipinas ..need ko pabang kumuha ng BM?

  7. I would just like to clarify as it’s a bit confusing…I just registered online. I am currently on my annual vacation and will return to same company and job site…why does it still requires me to schedule a visit on the nearest POEA? As it is clearly stated in the directive that I’m qualified for exemption… supposed i should be asked to confirm if I’m returning to same employer and job site….

  8. Hi ma’am /sir…iam going vacation this nov 4 until nov 19…then I apply thru bm online Oec.but it says no need for me to pay so I just update only my information.after updating what will be the next step….

  9. Hello po ma’am / sir. Tanong ko LNG po kng need q p po n kmuha ng oec magbakasyon LNG nmn po aqo.2weeks at balik dn po aqo s dati kung employer… Slmat po

  10. Hi sir mam tanung q lang poh kung maybabayaran pa ako sa oec umuwe ako ng last dec,21,2016 babalik po ako ng feb,17. 2017 same vompany same jobsite mag ten years na ako sa company nmin nagregister na rin ako sa bm online sabi sa akin duon exempted raw ako anu poh ba present q sa airport at kung maybabayaran pa ako sa oec.

  11. Gud day sir tanung ko lng po kilangan po ba ako kukuha ng oec balik ko po s feb. 14 same company . 8 yrs na po ako s work ko.. naka pag rgstrd na po ako s bmonline wla po ako na rcvd na notification kng exempted ba ako o hnd.. anu po gagawi ko.. anu dalhin pag punta s airport to provd na same company lng ang babalikan ko.. magkano po ba ang bayad kng sakali? Nid po ng sagot asap? Salamat…

  12. My husband need fly back to dubai on 23 Feb with the same employer and jobsite. But when i tried to get an oec for him through bmonline he is not exempted yet for oec. His last departure date in phils was march 12,2016. Please advise

  13. Hello po,pano po ba nag register ako sa oec eh ang validity till april 15,2017 eh nakalimotan kong 60days validity pla eh babalik pa ako ng dubai may 2,2017 .pede ba ako mag reregister uli sa mid ng march para validity mid ng May ??pasensya na po talaga nawala sa isip ko.salamat

  14. Hello,please answer our questions here,,,,returning ofw po ako,means to say exempted ako.
    Update kona lng yung profile ko.
    So ang tanong ko po,,pag na update kona,dadlhin kopa b yung mga requirements for getting an oec sa Philippine Embassy?
    Like original contract,pasport copy ko and my employer as well.
    Waiting for your response.
    Thanks in advanced.

  15. Hello. I am an ofw returning to the same employer, but i will take a side trip to Malaysia for 1 week from my original 1 month vacation. Am i an ofw or tourist? Will I be exempted from travel tax?

    • Option 1: You can pay via POEA main office is located in Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila but those residing from other parts of the regional offices nearest their area.
      Option 2: OWWA regional offices are located across the country.
      Option 3: OWWA ePayment Portal Land Bank of the Philippines or visit Nearest Land Bank.

  16. Goodmorning, naipatupad na po ba yung hindi na kelangan kumuha ng oec start ng june? From taiwan kasi magbabakasyon po ako ng july.

  17. Hello.pls reply po.nkauwi na ako last dec.ang appointment ko nun nov.20,2016.may problema daw ang system dito sa hk so temporary OEC bnigay sa akin.ngayong july 8,2017 ay uwi nman ako ng pinas. Nag aacquire ako ng OEC e hndi ako mkapasok gawa ng may pending appointment daw po ako.ano po pwede ko gawin.thanks

  18. I already registered and got OEC Exemption.
    And I got BM Exemption No.
    Is that okay now? Please help.
    I want reply please, I will leaving on June 24,2017.
    Thank you for answer.

  19. Hello po,,uuwi po ako this month emergency,,,bago po employer ko now,,nakauwi na ako dati last September 2016,,and now new employer po ako,,need ko po b ng OEC?

  20. Good day sir/madam. Last June 5,2016 I got back here in Doha with the same employer . And this coming July 25,2017 I will be home for 3 weeks vacation and be back with the same employer still. Now sir/madam do I NEED TO get a new copy of VERIFIED CONTRACT of which I already submitted before hand last June 2016 before I returned here in Doha.as required for me to submit it? Also do I NEED TO GET A NEW OEC since my 2 years contract with my same employer and job site still exist and VALID?
    I highly appreciative your prompt response to this matter.
    Thank you. More power. God bless

  21. Hello po..pa expire napo passport ko by january 2018, then magbabakasyon na ako sa august 12 2017 tpos babalik po ako sa November 8 2017 kaso bagong sponsor or bagong employer na po….plano ko jan na sa pinas mag renew ng passport therfore meron pa akong 3 months remaining bago ma expire passport..wala po kayang magiging problema since mag rerenew nmn na ako ditos sa pilipinas with 3 months remaining sa validity ng passport ko

  22. Good day, ask ko lng po regarding OEC exemption, anu po ibig sabihin nito ( And those hired through the Government Placement Branch, or the POEA’s in-house recruitment facility for Filipinos aspiring to work abroad.) ? What does it mean po? Thank you.

  23. hi mam ask lang po sa kapatid ko ito meron na kasi siya oec dati pano po gagawin renew nalang po ba para sa balik manggawa id

  24. I got an OEC last May 2017 when I’m on my annual leave and i will be going on a short vacation
    this coming October 2017. Do i need to get OEC or i am already exempted . If i am exempted is there
    any more requirement either any papers to present in the airport during departure? I will be backed
    with the same employer and same site.

  25. I got an oec last 2 days ago but my problem is the date of my departure dapat dec.28 pero nailagay ko dec. 12 kaya di pa nman ako nakabalik expired na oec kodec. 25, 2017.Ang tanong ko po pwede ba kuha ulit bago ang departure ko tnx. po.

  26. Gandang gabi po! May tanong lang po ako kc po ung validity ng visa ska work permit ay hanggang february 02,2018 uuwe po ako ngayong dec.25 2017 bblik po ako ng january 19,2018 pero my dala po aq supporting documents galing sa company ko kc ung work permit ko for renewal pa lng kumuha na po ako ng appointment ng OEC magkakaproblem po ba aq kpag kkuha na ako kc po my reminders na dapat valid 6mos po ang work permit ko.Slmat po!

  27. Hello po good day pauwi po ako netong jan. 14 at balik ng March 15.Kung exempted po ako sa pagkuha ng oec at deretso na sa airport..paano p.o. kung wala ako ng valid contract na maipakita hindi po kaya ako maka balik ng Kuwait(kasambahay)po ako


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