As an OFW based in the United Kingdom, you will need to follow certain guidelines to acquire an Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC). The OEC serves as your exit pass whenever you travel out of the Philippines and provides certain benefits such as exemption from paying the travel tax and terminal fee at the airport. Here is an overview of the process:
- Contract Verification: The first step is to have your employment contract verified by the Department of Labor and Employment’s (DOLE) Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) and the Philippine Embassy or Consulate in the United Kingdom. This verification ensures that your contract complies with the current employment laws, norms, and customs of both the Philippines and the host country.
- Online Appointment: After verifying your contract, it is necessary to schedule an appointment online using the Balik-Manggagawa Online Processing System (BM Online) provided by the POEA. To begin, visit the POEA website and create an account to gain access to the system and book your appointment.
- Document Preparation: Gather the required documents for the OEC application. This typically includes your verified employment contract, a valid passport, and any other supporting documents requested by the POEA. Make sure to have photocopies of these documents as well.
- BM Online Application: Log in to your BM Online account and complete the application form. Provide accurate information and upload the necessary documents. Review your application before submitting it.
- Payment of Fees: After submitting your application, you will be directed to pay the necessary fees. The fees may include the OEC processing fee, membership fee to the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), and other applicable charges. Follow the payment instructions provided by the system.
- Processing and Verification: Once your payment is confirmed, your application will undergo processing and verification by the POEA. This may take a few days, depending on the volume of applications. Check your BM Online account regularly for updates on the status of your application.
- OEC Issuance: Once your application is approved, you will be notified through your BM Online account. You can then download and print your OEC. Make sure to keep multiple copies for your records.
Remember to bring your OEC whenever you travel out of the Philippines as it will serve as your exit pass and provide you with the benefits mentioned earlier.
Please note that the process described above is based on general guidelines and may be subject to change. It is always advisable to consult the official websites of the POEA and the Philippine Embassy or Consulate in the United Kingdom for the most up-to-date and accurate information regarding the OEC application process.
The following individuals are qualified to process the OEC.
- Directly employed Filipino workers by an international employer
- Individuals who are employed by a recruitment agency
- OFWs employed by POEA’s Government Placement Branch (GPB)
Each document should be submitted in two (2) copies: an original and a duplicate or photocopy
Basic Document Requirements
- Printed Online Appointment (POPS-BAM)
- Printed Balik-Manggagawa Information Sheet
- Sworn Statement (For OFWs who have never had a POEA record or who are applying for OEC for the first time)
- Passport (valid for at least six months) from departure date
- Verified Employment Contract
- Certificate of Employment, Company ID, latest pay slip, or other documents as proof of employment
- Valid Work Visa, Work Permit, or any equivalent document
- Confirmed Airline Ticket
- OEC fees
- OWWA membership payment receipt
The list of requirements is subject to change, therefore it’s important to keep an eye on the POLO United Kingdom website and Facebook page for updates.
What Should I Do Before Applying for an OEC in the United Kingdom?
When preparing for your visit to the POLO United Kingdom Office, it’s important to consider the following steps:
- Determine if you qualify for an exemption: According to Philippine labor laws and regulations, foreign employers are not allowed to directly recruit Filipino workers. However, certain categories of employers are exempt from this restriction. You should confirm if your employer falls into one of these categories:
- Employers of Professional and Skilled Workers with Verified or Authenticated Employment Contracts that Comply with POEA Standards.
- Foreign Diplomats.
- Heads of State and High-ranking Government Officials.
- International Organizations.
- Lower-ranking officials from the first three categories have been approved by the POLO.
- Residents of the host nation who are permanent residents and hire their family members (excluding domestic workers).
- Gather the required documents: Once you have determined that your employer is exempt from the direct hiring restriction, it is important to prepare all the necessary documents. These documents may include but are not limited to:
- Authenticated or verified employment contract that complies with POEA standards.
- A valid passport and other identification documents.
- Proof of your qualifications, such as degrees, certifications, or licenses.
- Medical and health certificates as required.
- Proof of previous work experience and employment history.
- Any additional documents are specific to your profession or industry.
It’s advisable to ensure that all your documents are complete, up-to-date, and properly organized before your visit to the POLO United Kingdom Office. This will help streamline the process and prevent any unnecessary delays or rejections.
Remember to consult with your employer and the relevant Philippine government agencies, such as the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) or the POLO United Kingdom Office, for specific guidance and requirements based on your situation.
How to Get an OEC Appointment in UK (POPS-BAM System)
Prior to visiting POLO United Kingdom office, an OEC appointment is required.
Follow these instructions to quickly make an appointment. Remember that having an online appointment simplifies things because government workers can immediately verify your information.
Step 1: Visit the POEA Online Service Website here – https://onlineservices.dmw.gov.ph//onlineservices/poeaonline.aspx
Step 2: Click the “Let’s go” button on e-Registration
Step 4: Fill in the required information and then click register (a message will display indicating that your registration was “Successful”)
Step 5: Log in to the email address you provided when you registered (there is a message containing your “temporary password”)
Step 6: Return to the link provided in Step 1 and log in using the registered email address, then click “next.”
Step 7: Use the temporary password sent to your email, then click “log in.”
Step 8: Set your preferred password.
Step 9: Update your profile by clicking “My Profile,” after completing your profile, click “Update Profile” on the upper right side of the page
Step 10: Input your identification data (passport) and beneficiary on your profile
Step 11: Click the “Balik-Manggagawa” on your dashboard then click the “Next” button
Step 12: Enter your return flight date then click the “Next” button
Step 13: You will be asked about whether you are returning to the same employer, job site, and position if you are a returning BM.
If so, you can print your OEC exemption immediately.
If not, go to step 9 instead (change employer or new BM)
Step 14: Input all your contract details then click the “Submit” button
Step 15: Select your host country as the processing site then click the “Next” button
Step 16: Choose and select your preferred appointment date
Step 17: Take a screenshot and print your scheduled appointment date
How to Apply for an Overseas Employment Certificate in United Kingdom?
Step 1: Gather all of the necessary requirements.
Step 2: Go to POLO United Kingdom office on your scheduled appointment day. Show your approved appointment letter, valid ID, and full-dose vaccination card/certificate to the assigned security personnel.
Step 3: The assigned security personnel will check your name on the list of approved appointments for the day. To avoid long lines, bring the complete set of requirements.
Step 4: Get a token number from the assigned personnel.
Step 5: Go to the processing window and submit your documents.
Step 6: Pay for OEC fees.
Step 7: Wait for the OEC processor’s advice before printing your OEC in POPS-BAM System
Make sure that all the information and details in your OEC are correct and in line with your credentials.
Step 8: Sign in to your POPS-BAM account and select “Print OEC” from the “My Transaction Tab” menu.
- When filling out online forms, avoid using non-English characters (e.g., Chinese, Korean, Japanese, or Arabic) as it may cause a delay in processing your OEC (Overseas Employment Certificate).
- You can acquire an OEC only once during each visit to the Philippines. Obtaining multiple OECs simultaneously is not allowed.
- Make sure to bring three copies of your OEC to the airport on the day of your departure.
- The validity period of the OEC is 60 days from the date of issuance. Ensure that you have it with you at all times before leaving the Philippines.
- If a worker leaves the Philippines without an OEC, they may encounter difficulties during the check-in process or be stopped by immigration officials.
- Balik-Manggagawa OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers returning to their employment abroad) should also present a copy of their employment contract, plane ticket, and any other required travel documents.
- Once the OFW has all the necessary documents, they can proceed to the airport and present the OEC to the immigration officials. Having an OEC ensures a smooth travel experience while fulfilling legal obligations related to their employment.
- If you have any questions, you can contact +44 20 7839 8078 from Monday to Friday, 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM. Please note that the hotline is closed on public holidays in both the United Kingdom and the Philippines.
How to register in the POEA Online Processing System for Balik Manggagawa o POPS-BAM to get OEC
For OFWs who are taking vacation, it’s important to understand the importance of OEC. ,
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have any further questions regarding “How to Process OEC in the United Kingdom”, see the list of frequently asked questions and answers below.
1. Who can get OEC exemption?
The following requirements must all be met in order for a Balik-Manggagawas to be exempt from acquiring an OEC:
- Has a valid work visa or work permit
- Returning to the same employer and workplace
- Has a record in the POEA database
(Has previously received an OEC at any POEA offices or facilities, including the POEA main office, extension units, regional offices, POLO offices abroad, and BM mall processing centers)
2. Are OFWs allowed to travel without an OEC?
No. All OFWs leaving the Philippines, whether they are returning employees or new workers, must acquire an OEC.
The OEC serves as an exit clearance; therefore if you try to leave the country without it, Immigration will stop you. Additionally, you are excused from paying the terminal fee and travel tax thanks to this certificate.
3. How long is an OEC or OEC Exemption Number valid?
From the date of issuance, the OEC or OEC Exemption Number is valid for 60 days. You are required by POEA to obtain this as a Balik-Manggagawa before returning to your employer.
4. Is my OEC valid for many uses?
OEC or OEC Exemption Number is only intended for one use. Once you have given it to Immigration, it cannot be used again.
5. Why does the system want my most recent OEC number? What does it mean?
The most recent transaction record you have with POEA is your most recent OEC number. This information is required by the system in order to get your record and most recent employment information.
6. What happens if I forget my OEC number?
You will be redirected by the system to the APPOINTMENT page, where you must manually visit POEA to process your OEC.
7. What should I do if I lose my OEC?
Log in to your BM Online or POPS-BAM account and reprint your OEC.
8. Where can I settle my OEC fee?
- You can pay your fees in a number of ways, including:
- Globe G-cash
- Over-the-counter thru Banks
- Over-the-counter thru Bayad Centers
- Online Banking
- POLO United Kingdom office
Instructions on how to complete the payment process will be sent to you through email.
9. What is the POLO United Kingdom’s office hour?
The POLO office in the United Kingdom is open Monday-Friday, 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM (Closed on United Kingdom and the Philippines public holidays).
10. What is POLO United Kingdom’s address?
POLO United Kingdom’s address is Philippine Overseas Labor Office, 6-11 Suffolk St., London, United Kingdom.
11. What is the POLO United Kingdom’s hotline number?
You can reach the POLO United Kingdom office at +44 20 7839 8078.
The Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) is a document required by the Philippine government for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) to ensure their legitimacy and compliance with the regulations set by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). OEC Appointment United Kingdom OFW Balik Manggagawa Certificate The OEC serves as proof of their POEA registration and is presented to immigration officials at the airport before departing the Philippines.
To simplify the OEC application process, an online processing system was implemented. Here are some general steps that might be involved in acquiring an OEC:
- Register with the Balik-Manggagawa Online Processing System: Visit the official website of the POEA’s Balik-Manggagawa Online Processing System and create an account. Provide the required information and complete the registration process.
- Log in and fill out the application form: Once registered, log in to your account and fill out the necessary application form. Provide accurate and complete information as required.
- Choose the processing method: Select the processing method that suits your situation. Options may include processing the OEC online, through an embassy or consulate, or through an authorized agency.
- Pay the necessary fees: Pay the applicable fees for the OEC processing. The fees may vary depending on the processing method chosen and the type of employment or work contract.
- Submit the required documents: Upload the necessary documents, such as a valid passport, employment contract, work visa, and other supporting documents as specified by the POEA.
- Wait for verification and approval: Once you have submitted the application and required documents, the POEA will verify the information and process your application. This may involve checking the legitimacy of your employment and ensuring compliance with the regulations.
- Print your OEC: Once your application is approved, you will be able to download and print your OEC. Make sure to keep a copy with you during your travel and present it to the immigration officials at the airport before departure.
It’s important to note that the specific requirements and procedures for obtaining an OEC may vary over time. It’s recommended to visit the official website of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) or contact their office directly for the most up-to-date and accurate information regarding the OEC process for OFWs in the United Kingdom.
DMW POLO-OWWA London, United Kingdom
Address: Philippine Embassy, 6-11 Suffolk St. (10,745.52 km) SW1Y 4HG London, UK
POLO Email: email@example.com
Telephone Number/s: +44 20 7839 8078, (+44) 78 0279 0695
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/POLOOWWALONDON/
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