OFWs no longer need to get an Overseas Employment Certificate or OEC prior to deployment per advisory of DOLE and POEA. This is because OFWs will be given an iDOLE – OFW Identification Card.
This OFW card will be given free to OFWs who are duly registered with POEA. If you are working abroad illegally and as such you are not in the POEA official list of registered OFWs, you may not qualify to receive an OFW ID card.
The OFW card can be used as a bonafide, valid ID that the overseas worker can use to transact in other government agencies like Pag-IBIG HMDF, SSS, Philhealth, among others.
There will be an online portal wherein the OFW can use to access their government records in different agencies, as well as to request for services. It is also projected that this card can be used in the future as a debit and atm card, as well as a BEEP card for use in the LRT and MRT.
Secretary Bello of DOLE also said that the Department of Labor and Employment will try to create a system that will enable OFW to use their exclusive ID as a valid electronic passport that can be used anytime, if OFW will go out of the country or returning home to the Philippines.
Our opinion though at iSensey is that this possible acceptance of the OFW card as a valid ePassport is still so far off in the future. It would probably take several years before this can be realized, if ever, because of all the involved legalities and technicalities that needs to be hurdled.
The OFW Card as BEEP card, atm or debit card is easier to accomplish and we hope that this will be implemented soon for the benefit of our Overseas Filipino Workers.
What is the update on the OFW ID Card? How to claim and get it?
There is no need to apply to get the OFW ID!
As of July 7, DOLE is in coordination with POEA to get the official list of OFWs. Once they have this list, the government will start printing the OFW IDs. Malacanang will officially announce this new identification card system for OFWs this coming July 12, 2017. All OFWs duly registered with POEA will get their card. How to get?
- Those who are still in the Philippines, waiting for their deployment or departure date – You will get your OFW ID from either thru DOLE or POEA (The exact procedure or where to claim the card is still unclear as of today, all details might be released by the government on launch date July 12. Let’s wait for that.)
*OFWs are no longer required to get OEC, instead they will use and show their ID for immigration check / departure purposes. ID printing is projected to start this August 2017.
*For those who will depart from today and before availability of ID (assuming the IDs are not yet ready or not yet distributed ) – please wait for official directive from the government if you still need OEC. We recommend that you call or visit POEA branch to ask about your case.
- Those who are currently working abroad – no official details yet on how you can claim your own OFW ID card, if it will be sent to your current address overseas or if you need to claim it via Embassy or if you will claim it when you come home to the Philippines for a visit.
The thing that is very clear right now is that when you come home for a visit and will go back abroad to work, you no longer need to secure an OEC because you will be using the OFW iDOLE card instead.
UPDATE July 12, 2017
DOLE Secretary Bello said that an estimate 4 Million IDs will be generated. Ex-OFWs or inactive OFWs will also be issued an iDOLE OFW ID.
Here now is the PROCEDURE in getting the iDOLE OFW ID.
1. Visit the main office of DOLE or regional office nearest you. Check directory of regional and field offices of Department of Labor and Employment. Wait for official announcement on the starting date to process the ID before you go visit.
2. Prepare primary or secondary identification ID or materials to confirm your identity. Check here for list of IDs.
3. Approach to the DOLE personnel in the regional office and request for the processing.
4. You may be ask for your current Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) or contract to prove that you are a bonafide OFW, applying for the ID for the first time.
5. The DOLE officer will start verification process. Your name will be checked if it is in the roster of official OFWs as furnished by POEA.
6. Once verification is successful and your status is validated, the officer will start processing your new iDOLE OFW ID bearing your unique OFW ID number.
7. Once processing is completed, you will be given your new IDOLE OFW ID card.
*If there are changes to this guideline and procedure, please update this post. To be 100% sure, we recommend that you contact or visit DOLE or POEA directly.
MORE GOOD DEVELOPMENTS FOR OFWs
There are more good news coming for our OFWs!
- This October 2017, the Duterte Administration will launch the OFW Bank. Once the important details are available like requirements to open a savings account in OFW Bank, if dependents can open a bank account for the OFW who is currently deployed abroad, how much minimum deposit requirement for savings and time deposits in OFW Bank, etc., iSensey will update this post as soon as possible.
- There are now more branches of OSSCO or the One-Stop Service Center for OFWs and more will be set-up in the future. This one stop shop is aimed to make services easier to avail of especially those who are residing in the provinces, and away from major cities.
Update July 14, 2017
The cost of the OFW iDOLE ID card will be shouldered by the employers per Presidential Spokesperson Abella. Read the post on “OFW ID – Is It Really Free?“.
As a n OFW, if you have something to request from the government to make your life easier, what would it be?
What do you think of the new OFW ID card? Please share it on the comment below.