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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

Foreign workers are required to have the proper visas and work permits in the Philippines, as established by immigration laws. Work permits must be secured for employees, and sponsored by a locally licensed and incorporated entity, which can be a problem for companies just entering the Philippines’ market. If you have yet to complete the incorporation process you can use an outsourced management company or GEO Employer of Record to sponsor the employee for the necessary permits.

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Depending on the nature of the business entity, Non-Philippine nationals must apply through different agencies. All documents executed abroad must be notarised by a public official and authenticated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Philippines Embassy / Consulate of the country where the documents were issued.

Approval or denial of the application should be made within 15 working days. If no official acceptance is received within the said period, the application is considered as automatically approved.

Companies willing to sponsor foreign nationals in the Philippines to engage in any lawful occupation must file a Pre-Arranged Employment 9 (g) Visa, undertaking the following steps:

Documents Required:

Application Procedure:

  • Secure the CGAF from either the Public Information and Assistance Unit (PIAU) at BI G/F Main Office or from the official BI Website;
  • Submit the pre-screening documents to the Central Receiving Unit (CRU) or to the frontline officer or staff of other Immigration Offices able to process this transaction;
  • Pay the required fees;
  • Submit copy of the Official Receipt;
  • Attend hearing;
  • Proceed to Image and Fingerprint Capturing Counter of the Alien Registration Division (ARD) and submit requirements for ACR I-Card application;
  • Check website if visa application is already approved;
  • If approved, submit passport for visa implementation;
  • If ACR I-Card is approved, claim ACR I-Card.

Duration: It takes approximately two to four months to process this visa.

It is possible to have an initial period of one, two or three years validity on a 9(g) Pre-Arranged Employees – Commercial visa. Extensions are possible for one, two or three year years depending on the Employer-Employee Contract.

A 9(g) visa may be renewed annually for a total period not exceeding five years.

Cost:

  • 1 Year – Between 155 and 215 USD
  • 2 Years – Between 280 and 365 USD
  • 3 Years – Between 400 and 515 USD

In case foreign nationals fall under section 47(a)(2), they must be directly issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) with 47(a)(2) visas upon the submission of an application and supporting documents required under section 4, with a copy of their passport, duly-authenticated by the Philippine Embassy/Consulate abroad, which passport should be valid for a period of at least six months at the time of the application filing.

Applications for issuance of 47(a)(2) visas to foreign nationals abroad shall be filed at least two months prior to the estimated date of arrival in the Philippines of such foreign nationals.

Duration: The overall process takes approximately six weeks.

Cost: Around 46 USD per single entrance.

Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

Once you get in touch with us, one of our consultants will take all the work off your hands, coordinate with our local partners to get all the required permits organised, provide the processing time, costs, document-checklist and keep you informed through the process. Contact us to know more.

Types of visas in Philippines

Category Description of Visa
Temporary Visitor’s Visa for Business Purposes - 9 (a)

Temporary Visitor’s Visas are available to individuals coming to the Philippines for business, pleasure or health reasons.

The processing time of this Visas takes, on average, five working days and allows an initial authorised stay of up to 59 days.

It is possible to extend the visa every two months for a total of 16 months. Extensions beyond 16 months and up to 24 months need the approval of the Chief of the Immigration Regulation Division (IRD) of the Bureau of Immigration (BI).

Extensions of stay beyond 24 months need the approval of the Commissioner of the BI.

Fees:
– Single entry valid for 3 months – Approximately 40 USD;

– Multiple entry valid for six 6 months – Approximately 80 USD;

– Multiple entry valid for six months – Approximately 115 USD.

International Treaty Trader/Investor - 9 (d)

A Treaty Trader/Investor Visa is granted to a foreign national coming to the Philippines solely to carry on substantial trade between the Philippines and his or her home country, or developing and directing the operations of an enterprise in the Philippines in which he or she has invested a substantial amount of capital (at least USD 30,000 for individuals and USD 120,000 for corporations).

Treaty Trader Visas are currently granted only to nationals of Germany, Japan and the United States.

The registration process takes four – six weeks and the Visa is released after 10 -15 working days.

The validity of this visa can be one or two years and it can be extended for one or two years.

Fees: Between 200 and 290 USD.

Special Non-Immigrant Visa Under E.O. 226

An EO 226 visa is granted to foreign personnel of regional or area headquarters or regional operating headquarters of multinational companies.

Processing time can range between three and four weeks for filing and submitting all documents.

The visa is valid for three years and may be extended for additional three years.

Fees: Approximately 115 USD.

Alien Employment Permit (AEP)

Under Art 40 of the Labour Code, all foreign nationals, except specific categories, who intend to work in the Philippines must apply for an Alien Employment Permit (AEP) at the DOLE Regional Office or Field Office, responsible for the place of work. An approved AEP is required before a foreign national can file an application for a section 9(g) work visa.

Cost: PHP 8,000.
Time: 2-3 weeks.

In case foreign nationals have commenced working while their applications for an AEP or a section 9(g) visa are still pending, they must secure a Provisional Work Permit (PWP). The PWP will be valid for a period of three months or until a section 9(g) visa has been issued in favour of the applicant.

Cost: PHP 4,000.
Time: 2-3 weeks.

Philippines

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