About POEA


The POEA has an organizational structure with the POEA Governing Board at the top. The Secretary

 of Labor and Employment heads the Governing Board, and the POEA Administrator as vice-chairman 

and representatives from the private, women, sea-based and land-based sectors as members. 

The POEA Administrator oversees the daily operations of the agency and is supported by three deputy

The Deputy Administrator for Employment and Welfare oversees the Pre-Employment Services Office
 and the Welfare and Employment Office.

Under the Deputy Administrator for Adjudication and Employment Regulation are the Licensing and Regulation
 Office and the Adjudication Office

The Deputy Administrator for Management handles the general administrative and support services of
the administration.

An average of 3,000 clients and as much as 5,000 clients s are served by POEA main office daily. 
Our clients include Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) Licensed Recruitment and Manning Agencies Foreign
Employers/Principals Applicants – Workers/ Would be Applicants, NGOs, media, and the general public.

Regional Offices
The POEA has three (3) Regional Centers which are located in La Union for Luzon, Cebu for the Visayas 
region and Davao for the Mindanao area.

Regional Extension Units are in Baguio-Cordillera Administrative Region, Iloilo, Cagayan de Oro and
 Zamboanga while satellite offices are located in Pampanga, Calamba, Laguna, Legaspi, Bacolod and

Core Functions
Industry Regulation 
·        Issues license to engage in overseas recruitment and manning to private recruitment agencies and 
      ship manning companies
·        Hears and arbitrates complaints and cases filed against recruitment and manning agencies, foreign
 principals and employers, and overseas workers for reported violation of POEA rules and regulations,
 except for money claims
·        Implements a system of incentives and penalty for private sector participants
·        Sets minimum labor standards
·        Monitors overseas job advertisements on print, broadcast and television
·        Supervises the government’s program on anti-illegal recruitment
·        Imposes disciplinary actions on erring employers and workers and seafarers
Employment Facilitation
·        Accredits/ registers foreign principals and employers hiring Filipino workers
·        Approves manpower requests of foreign principals and employers
·        Evaluates and processes employment contracts
·        Assists departing workers at the ports of exit
·        Develops and monitors markets and conducts market research
·        Conducts marketing missions
·        Enters into memorandum of understanding on the hiring of Filipino workers with labor–receiving
·        Facilitates the deployment of workers hired through government-to-government arrangement
·        Provides a system of worker’s registry
Worker’s Protection
·        Intensifies public education and information campaign
·        Conducts pre-employment orientation and anti-illegal recruitment seminars nationwide
·        Conducts Pre-Deployment Orientation Seminars (PDOS) to workers hired through the 
government-to-government arrangement and name hires
·        Provides technical assistance in the drafting of bilateral and multilateral agreements
·        Provides legal assistance to victims of illegal recruitment
·        Prepares OFW global mapping and profiling
·        Implements gender-sensitive programs
·        Networks with non-government organizations, workers’ organizations, etc.
·        Provides repatriation assistance
General Administration and Support Services
·        Human Resources Development
·        Property and Supplies Management
·        Financial Management
·        Information and Communication Technology
·        Plans and Policy Development
·        Quality Management System
Program Thrusts
  • Continuing Agency Education and Agency Performance Evaluation/Ranking and Classification System
          - Pre-application orientation seminar
          - Labor market fora
          - Seminar on best recruitment practices
  • Implementation of comprehensive case management program
          - Conciliation
          - Adjudication
          - Monitoring of appeals
          - Enforcement of decisions

Facilitation of 1 million OFW deployment
          - Dispatch of technical marketing missions
          - Intensify marketing intelligence work
          - Pursue bilateral/multi-lateral agreements
          - Encourage visit of foreign gov’ts and employers
          - Strengthen linkages with education and training sector
          - Enhance coordination with host governments
          - Enforce policy on skills competencies

Global OFW mapping and profiling
- Fast track information on OFWs worldwide, their work sites, skills, and gender. The
 target countries for 2008 are: KSA, JAPAN, TAIWAN, UAE, KUWAIT, QATAR, HONG KONG, 

Intensification of AIR campaign
         - Pre-employment orientation seminars
         - Illegal recruitment free-LGUs
         - Multi-media information and education program
         - Legal assistance to IR victims
         - Surveillance/Entrapment operations
         - Arrests
         - Prosecution
         - Closure of establishments

Implementation of incentive program for victims and witnesses of illegal recruitment
          - Payment of docket fees and other court or legal fees
          - Employment without placement fees

Provision of on-site remedies to OFWs to file complaints against employer or agency
OFWs may file complaints for violations of POEA rules against principal, employer, and/or Philippine recruitment 
agency at the Philippine Overseas Labor Office s (POLOs)

    All About Illegal Recruitment

    What is Illegal Recruitment?
    Any act of canvassing, enlisting, contracting, transporting, utilizing, hiring or procuring workers and includes referringcontract services, promising or advertising for employment abroad, whether for profit or not, when undertaken by a non-license or non-holder of authority contemplated under Art 13 (F) of Presidential Decree No. 442, as amended otherwise known as the Labor Code of the Philippines: Provided, That any such non-licensee or non-holder who, in any manner, offers or promises for a fee employment abroad to two or more persons shall be deemed so engaged. (sec. 6, RA 8042).
    It shall likewise include the following acts, whether committed by any persons, whether a non-licensee, non-holder, licensee or holder of authority.
    (a) To charge or accept directly or indirectly any amount greater than the specified in the schedule of allowable fees prescribed by the Secretary of Labor and Employment, or to make a worker pay any amount greater than that actually received by him as a loan or advance;
    (b) To furnish or publish any false notice or information or document in relation to recruitment or employment;
    (c) To give any false notice, testimony, information or document or commit any act of misrepresentation for the purpose of securing a license or authority under the Labor Code;
    (d) To induce or attempt to induce a worker already employed to quit his employment in order to offer him another unless the transfer is designed to liberate a worker from oppressive terms and conditions of employment;
    (e) To influence or attempt to influence any persons or entity not to employ any worker who has not applied for employment through his agency;
    (f) To engage in the recruitment of placement of workers in jobs harmful to public health or morality or to dignity of the Republic of the Philippines;
    (g) To obstruct or attempt to obstruct inspection by the Secretary of Labor and Employment or by his duly authorized representative;
    (h) To fail to submit reports on the status of employment, placement vacancies, remittances of foreign exchange earnings, separations from jobs, departures and such other matters or information as may be required by the Secretary of Labor and Employment;
    (i) To substitute or alter to the prejudice of the worker, employment contracts approved and verified by the Department of Labor and Employment from the time of actual signing thereof by the parties up to and including the period of the expiration of the same without the approval of the Department of Labor and Employment;
    (j) For an officer or agent of a recruitment or placement agency to become an officer or member of the Board of any corporation engaged in travel agency or to be engaged directly on indirectly in the management of a travel agency;
    (k) To withhold or deny travel documents from applicant workers before departure for monetary or financial considerations other than those authorized under the Labor Code and its implementing rules and regulations;
    (l) Failure to actually deploy without valid reasons as determined by the Department of Labor and Employment; and
    (m) Failure to reimburse expenses incurred by the workers in connection with his documentation and processing for purposes of deployment, in cases where the deployment does not actually take place without the worker's fault. Illegal recruitment when committed by a syndicate or in large scale shall be considered as offense involving economic sabotage.
    Illegal recruitment is deemed committed by a syndicate carried out by a group of three (3) or more persons conspiring or confederating with one another. It is deemed committed in large scale if committed against three (3) or more persons individually or as a group.

    The persons criminally liable for the above offenses are the principals, accomplices and accessories. In case of juridical persons, the officers having control, management or direction of their business shall be liable.

    What are the penalties for illegal recruitment?
    (a) Any person found guilty of illegal recruitment shall suffer the penalty of imprisonment of not less than six (6) years and one (1) day but not more than twelve (12) years and a fine not less than two hundred thousand pesos (P200,000.00) nor more than five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00).
     (b) The penalty of life imprisonment and a fine of not less than five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) nor more than one million pesos (P1,000,000.00) shall be imposed if illegal recruitment constitutes economic sabotage as defined herein.

     Provided, however, that the maximum penalty shall be imposed if the person illegally recruited is less than eighteen (18) years of age or committed by a non-licensee or non-holder of authority.

    Identify an illegal recruiter
    Kilalanin ang illegal recruiter!
    Ang illegal recruiter ay:

    • agad naniningil ng placement fee o anumang kaukulang bayad nang walang resibo
    • nangangako ng madaliang pag-alis patungo sa ibang bansa
    • nagre-require agad ng medical examination o training kahit wala pang malinaw na employer o kontrata
    • nakikipag-transaksiyon sa mga aplikante sa mga pampublikong lugar tulad ng restaurant, mall, atbpa. at hindi sa opisina ng lisensyadong ahensiya
    • bahay-bahay kung mag-recruit ng mga aplikante
    • hndi nagbibigay ng sapat na impormasyon tungkol sa ina-aplayang trabaho
    • nagsasabi na may kausap na direct employer at ang mga aplikante ay di na kailangang dumaan sa POEA
    • nangangako ng mabilis na pag-alis ng aplikante gamit ang tourist o visit visa
    • walang maipakitang employment contract o working visa
    • nagpapakilala na empleyado ng isang lisensyadong recruitment agency ngunit walang maipakitang ID
    • nagpapakilala na konektado sa isang travel agency o training center
    • nanghihikayat sa mga aplikante na mangalap ng iba pang aplikante upang mapabilis ang pagpapaalis
    • walang maibigay na sapat at tamang impormasyon tungkol sa sarili tulad ng buong pangalan o address
    • nangangako na ang mga dokumento ay ipapasok sa POEA para mai-process (lalo na sa kaso ng EPS-Korea)

How to Avoid Illegal Recruitment

  • 1.Do not apply at recruitment agencies not licensed by POEA.
    Do not deal with licensed agencies without job orders.
  • 3.Do not deal with any person who is not an authorized representative of a licensed agency.
  • 4.Do not transact business outside the registered address of the agency. If recruitment is conducted in the province, check if the agency has a provincial recruitment authority.
  • 5.Do not pay more than the allowed placement fee. It should be equivalent to one month salary, exclusive of documentation and processing costs.
  • 6.Do not pay any placement fee unless you have a valid employment contract and an official receipt.
  • 7.Do not be enticed by ads or brochures requiring you to reply to a Post Office (P.O.) Box, and to enclose payment for processing of papers.
  • 8.Do not deal with training centers and travel agencies, which promise overseas employment.
  • 9.Do not accept a tourist visa.
  • 10.Do not deal with fixers.

Modus Operandi of Illegal Recruiters

Escort Services – Undocumented  workers are escorted at the airport or any international  exit to evade checkpoints set to check on the documents of workers.

Tourist–Worker Scheme – Workers leave the country purportedly as tourist but in reality is being deployed as worker abroad.

Assumed Identity – Workers particularly minors are deployed abroad under an assumed identity.

Direct Hiring – Workers are hired by foreign employers without the intervention of licensed recruitment agencies and are deployed undocumented and without protection.

Trainee Worker Scheme – Hired workers are deployed allegedly not for employment but for training purposes only and will return to sending company after training.
Backdoor Points Scheme – Workers are sent abroad not through regular exit channels like airports but are deployed usually through cargo ships.
Tie-Up System – Unlicensed recruiters with foreign principals who are usually in the blacklist use the name and offices of licensed recruiters in their illegal activity.
Visa Assistance/Consultancy Scheme – Firms that offer services including the pairing of workers with foreign employers and promising applicants immigrant visas but are in reality engaged in the recruitment business.

Blind Ads Scheme – Workers are enticed to apply and send cash payments addressed to a Postal Office Box without the worker having the opportunity to communicate personally with the recruiter.

Policy on Immigration Consultants
MC 10, series of 2003
Immigration consultancy agencies and similar entities which are based locally, are required to obtain a license in accordance with the guidelines as provided for in Part II, Rule I, secs. 1 and 2 and Rule 2, secs. 1 to 5 of the 2002 POEA Rules and Regulations, before they may engage in recruitment and placement activities, regardless of the visa under which deployment shall be made eventually.

FEES shall be duly covered with OFFICIAL RECEIPTS and may be collected only AFTER a worker has been issued the necessary EB3 Visa.

Top 10 Internet Scams
1) The Nigerian scam, also known as 419

Most of you have received an email from a member of a Nigerian family with wealth. It is a desperate cry for help in getting a very large sum of money out of the country. A common
variation is a woman in Africa who claimed that her husband had died, and that she wanted
to leave millions of dollars of his estate to a good business.

In every variation, the scammer is promising obscenely large payments for small unskilled
tasks. This scam, like most scams, is too good to be true. Yet people still fall for this money transfer con game.

They will use your emotions and willingness to help against you. They will promise you a large cut of their business or family fortune.

All you are asked to do is cover the endless legal and other fees that must be paid to the
people that can release the scammer's money.

The more you are willing to pay, the more they will try to suck out of your wallet. You will
never see any of the promised money, because there isn't any. And the worst thing is, this
scam is not even new; its variant dates back to 1920s when it was known as 'The Spanish
Prisoner' con.

2) Advanced fees paid for a guaranteed loan or credit card

If you are thinking about applying for a "pre-approved" loan or a credit card that charges an
up-front fee, ask yourself: "why would a bank do that?".  These scams are obvious to people
who take time to scrutinize the offer.

Remember: reputable credit card companies do charge an annual fee but it is applied to the balance of the card, never at the sign-up. Furthermore, if you legitimately clear your credit
balance each month, a legitimate bank will often wave the annual fee.

As for these incredible, pre-approved loans for a half-a-million dollar homes: use your
common sense. These people do not know you or your credit situation, yet they are willing
to offer massive credit limits.

Sadly, a percentage of all the recipients of their "amazing" offer will take the bait and pay
the up-front fee.

If only one in every thousand people fall for this scam, the scammers still win several
hundred dollars. Alas, far too many victims, pressured by financial problems, willingly step
into this con man's trap.

3) Lottery scams
Most of us dream of hitting it big, quitting our jobs and retiring while still young enough to
enjoy the fine things in life. Chances are you will receive at least one intriguing email from someone saying that you did indeed win a huge amount of money. The visions of a dream
home, fabulous vacation, or other expensive goodies you could now afford with ease, could
make you forget that you have never ever entered this lottery in the first place.

This scam will usually come in the form of a conventional email message. It will inform you
that you won millions of dollars and congratulate you repeatedly. The catch: before you can
collect your "winnings", you must pay the "processing" fee of several thousands of dollars.

Stop! The moment the bad guys cash your money order, you lose.

Once you realize you have been suckered into paying $3000 to a con man, they are long
gone with your money. Do not fall for this lottery scam.

4) Phishing emails and phony web pages

This is the most widespread Internet and email scam today. It is a "sting" con game.
"Phishing" is identity and password theft based on convincing emails and web pages. These
emails and web pages resemble legitimate credit authorities like Citibank, eBay, or Paypal.
They frighten or entice you into visiting a phony web page and entering your ID and password. Commonly, the guise is an urgent need to "confirm your identity". They will even offer you
a story of how your account has been attacked by hackers to lure you into entering your
confidential information.

The email message will require you to click on a link. But instead of leading you to the real
login https: site, they will to a fake website. The fake website is often very convincing

You then innocently enter your ID and password. This information is intercepted by the
scammers, who later access your account and fleece you for several hundred dollars.

This phishing con , like all cons, depends on people believing the legitimacy or their emails
and web pages. Because it was born out of hacking techniques, "fishing" is stylistically spelled "phishing" by hackers.

Tip: the beginning of the link address should have https://. Phishing fakes will just have
http:// (no"s" . If still in doubt, make a phone call to the financial institution to verify if
the email is legit. In the meantime, never click on the link in any suspicious email.

5) Items for sale overpayment scam

This one involves an item you might have listed for sale such as a car, truck or some other expensive item. The scammer finds your ad and sends you an email offering to pay much
more than your asking price. The reason for overpayment is supposedly related to the
international fees to ship the car overseas. In return, you are to send him the car and the
cash for the difference.

The money order you receive looks real so you deposit it into your account. In a couple of
days (or the time it takes to clear) your bank informs you the money order was fake and
demands you pay that amount back immediately.

In most documented versions of this money order scam, the money order was indeed an
authentic document, but it was never authorized by the bank it was stolen from.

In the case of cashier's checks, it is usually a convincing forgery. You have now lost the car,
the cash you sent with the car, and you owe a hefty sum of money to your bank to cover for
the bad money order or the fake cashier's check.

6) Employment scams

You have posted your resume, with at least some personal data accessible by potential
employers, on a legitimate employment site. You receive a job offer to become a
"financial representative" of an overseas company you have never even heard of before.
The reason they want to hire you is that this company has problems accepting money from
US customers and they need you to handle those payments. You will be paid 5 to 15 percent commission per transaction.

If you apply, you will provide the scammer with your personal data, such as bank account information, so you can "get paid". Instead, you will experience some, or all, of the following:

* identity theft,
* money stolen from your account, or
* may receive fake checks or money orders for payments which you deposit into your account but must send 85 – 95 percent of that to your "employer".

Soon you will owe much money to your bank!
In other instance, you will receive an unsolicited e-mail message from a "multinational
company"  congratulating you for being selected for a specific job. The e-mail contains details about the "hiring company", the positions needed, and a very enticing compensation package.
You will be asked to send money through Western Union as processing fee or reservation fee.

7) Disaster relief scams

What do 9-11, Tsunami and Katrina have in common? These are all disasters, tragic events
where people die, lose their loved ones, or everything they have. In times like these, good
people pull together to help the survivors in any way they can, including online donations. Scammers set up fake charity websites and steal the money donated to the victims of

If your request for donation came via email, there is a chance of it being a phishing attempt. Do not click on the link in the email and volunteer your bank account or credit card information.

Your best bet is to contact the recognized charitable organization directly by phone or their website.

8) Travel scams

These scams are most active during the summer months. You receive an email with the
offer to get amazingly low fares to some exotic destination but you must book it today or the offer
expires that evening. If you call, you'll find out the travel is free but the hotel rates are
highly overpriced.

Some can offer you rock-bottom prices but hide certain high fees until you 'sign on the dotted line'. Others, in order to give you the 'free' something, will make you sit through a timeshare pitch at the destination. Still others can just take your money and deliver nothing.

Also, getting your refund, should you decide to cancel, is usually a lost cause, often called a nightmare or mission-impossible.

Your best strategy is to book your trip in person, through a reputable travel agency or proven legitimate online service like Travelocity or Expedia.

9) "Make Money Fast" chain emails

A classic pyramid scheme: you get an email with a list of names, you are asked to send 5
dollars (or so) by mail to the person whose name is at the top of the list, add your own name to the bottom, and forward the updated list to a number of other people.

The author of this scam letter painstakingly explains that, if more and more people join
this chain, when it's your turn to receive the money, you might even become a millionaire!

Bear in mind that, most times, the list of names is manipulated to keep the top name (the
creator of the scam, or his friends) on top, permanently.

As with the previously circulating snail-mail version of this chain, the email edition is just
as illegal. Should you choose to participate, you risk being charged with fraud – definitely
not something you want on your record, or resume.

10) "Turn Your Computer Into a Money-Making Machine!"

Although not a full blown scam, this scheme works as follows: You send someone money for instructions on where to go and what to download and install on your computer to turn it
into a money-making machine --  for spammers.

At sign-up, you get a unique ID and you have to give them your PayPal account information
for the "big money' deposits you'll soon be receiving. The program that you are supposed to
run, sometimes 24/7, opens multiple ad windows, repeatedly, thus generating per-click
revenue for spammers.

In other scenario, your ID is limited to a certain number of page clicks per day. In order to
make any money whatsoever from this scheme, you are pretty much forced to scam the
spammers by hiding your real IP address with Internet proxy services such as "findnot", so
you can make more page clicks.

I won't even go into the discussion about what this program will do to your computer's performance... it is a true tragedy if you get conned into this scam.

Overseas Employment Scams

Job seekers, interested in overseas employment that promises high pay, good benefits, free traveled adventure, should be aware that there are unscrupulous operators who have devised elaborate and very convincing scams to bilk unwitting, and often desperate applicants.
Before getting swept away with promises of exotic job opportunities, make sure you have thoroughly investigated the matter and know the potential risks involved in obtaining overseas employment.

Typical Overseas Employment Scams

Unlike legitimate employment firms that have permanent addresses, many unscrupulous operators run their so-called job placement firms from out-of-state, and may provide only a post office or mail drop address. Although there are legitimate firms with post office or mail drop addresses, job applicants should be aware that this practice, when used by unscrupulous operators, makes it easier for the operators to avoid scrutiny by their clients.
In many instances, law enforcement officials investigating a suspicious firm have found a "fly-by-night" operation. The scam headquarters, with little more than a desk and a telephone, may be based in one state, but operate out of other states, making it more difficult for the officials to track the operation.
Typical overseas job scams, include:
  • Firms that charge advance fees. These operations usually advertise in newspapers and magazines. The ads most frequently offer construction jobs, one of the industries hardest hit by a weak economy. Consumers who call the number, provided in the ad, are generally told that there are immediate openings available for which they are perfectly suited. But to lock in the job, they are told, they must pay a placement fee in advance.These up-front charges can range from $50 to several thousand dollars. Firms that charge these advance fees often are so eager to get the money in their hands and avoid using the U.S. mail service that they may send a courier to pick up the deposit, or require that it be sent via overnight delivery, at the applicant's expense.
    However, more often than not, these firms actually have little, or no, contacts with employers and can offer minimal assistance, despite their service charges.
    Job seekers should not be duped by a firm's promise of a refund, if no job or lead materializes. Most of these firms that require payment in advance do not stay around long enough for dissatisfied customers to get their money back.
  • Firms that charge a fee once they provide a job lead. A disreputable firm may fabricate job leads, or bring in a third-party to impersonate a potential employer, in order to get an applicant's fee. 
  • "900" number operators. A "900" number connected with employment opportunities may charge a high flat fee, or per-minute rate. In some instances,"900" number operators may fail to disclose the cost of each call or, if printed, display it in fine print. As a result, callers may not be aware of how much they are spending. Some unscrupulous operators may even increase their fees by creating delays while the caller is on the line.In one case, for example, a consumer answered an advertisement instructing job applicants to call an"800" toll-free number for more information. The message on that number directed the caller to dial a"900" number to find out about job openings. The"900" number, however, merely directed the caller to send a stamped, self-addressed envelope to have a job application mailed out. The consumer complied; received only a one-page generic job application, and was billed $39 for the phone call.
    The FTC now requires, among other things, that operators of "900" numbers provide information on the cost of the call up front. When calling a "900" number, be sure you understand the charges before continuing with the call.
  • Job listing services. There are many firms that make no promises to place you in a job. They merely sell a list of job opportunities, providing little assurance about the accuracy of the information.For instance, the information may be sold via a newsletter that features photocopied help-wanted ads from newspapers around the world. Many of the ads may be months old, soliciting jobs that already have been filled. In addition, the ads may not have been verified to ensure that the jobs actually exist.
    Some ads may be from countries with strict quotas that discourage the hiring of foreign citizens. Other publications may promise access to information on job opportunities, but provide nothing more than a listing of employers in various regions.

How to Avoid Employment Scams

Many job seekers have lost money to disreputable advance-fee placement firms. If you decide to use an overseas job placement firm, the best way to avoid being scammed is to learn as much as you can about the operation:
  • Ask for references. Request both names of employers and employees the company has actually found jobs for. Scam artists will typically defend their refusal to provide the information, claiming it is a" trade secret." Or, they frequently claim that if they told you where the openings are, you would circumvent their services. These schemers may also cite privacy concerns as the reason for refusing to provide the names of people they have placed. 
  • Check out reliability. Contact the local Better Business Bureau, as well as the state's consumer protection agency, to find out if any complaints have been filed against the firm. 
  • Avoid firms that operate solely via telephone or mail. Any reputable placement firm will almost certainly need to meet you before it can market you effectively to an employer. Be suspicious of any operation that claims it can place you with an employer, without meeting and interviewing you.Be particularly wary of firms that operate outside of the state where they advertise. In many instances, unscrupulous operators purposefully seek to distance themselves from their clients in order to avoid closer scrutiny. If they are ultimately challenged, the distance complicates an investigation by law enforcement authorities.
  • Find out how long the employment company has been in business. Also, ask what is the firm's present financial condition. Compare the company, and the services offered, with other similar firms before you pay a fee. 
  • Get  all promises in writing. Before you pay for anything, request and obtain a written contract that describes the services the firm intends to provide. Determine whether the firm is simply going to forward your resume to a company that publicly advertised a listing, or if it will actually seek to place you with an employer. Make sure that any promise you receive in writing is the same as what was stated in the initial sales pitch.
  • Research any information the firm provides to you before you make a commitment. Make certain the job actually exists before you pay a firm to "hold" a slot for you, and definitely before you make plans to relocate.Some unfortunate job seekers have been instructed to meet at a particular place to fly to their new jobs, only to find no airline tickets, no job, and often, no more company.
  • Check with the embassy of the country where the job is supposed to be located. Make certain that, as a citizen of another country, you are eligible to work there. 
  • Ask if you will be eligible for a refund, if the leads the firm provides you are unacceptable, or do not work out for any other reason. If the firm has a refund policy, ask for specific written details that spell out whether you can expect a full refund, and if there are any time limits for receiving your refund.Even if you are promised a refund in a written agreement, read the fine print. A disreputable firm may include "red tape" that protects its interests, not yours.
    For example, one common scam is to include a requirement that job seekers check in regularly with the firm, at their own expense. Clients who unwittingly fail to make the required contact may forfeit their opportunity for a refund. However, they are not told this until they ask for the refund.

If You Are Scammed

If you have been victimized by an employment scam, you can help prevent these types of incidents from recurring by reporting it to the proper law enforcement authorities. They may be able to put the unscrupulous operator out of business and, in extreme cases, fine them heavily or even put them in jail.

Tips To Remember

  • Be very skeptical of overseas employment opportunities that sound "too good to be true."
  • Never send cash in the mail, and be extremely cautious with firms that require a money order. This could indicate that the firm is attempting to avoid a traceable record of its transactions.
  • Do not be fooled by official-sounding names. Many scam artists operate under names that sound like those of long-standing, reputable firms.
  • Avoid working with firms that require payment in advance.
  • Do not give your credit card or bank account number to telephone solicitors.
  • Read the contract very carefully. Have an attorney look over any documents you are asked to sign.
  • Beware of an agency that is unwilling to give you a written contract.
  • Do not hesitate to ask questions. You have a right to know what services to expect and the costs involved.
  • Do not make a hasty decision. Instead, take time to weigh all the pros and cons of the situation. Be wary of demands that "you must act now."
  • Keep a copy of all agreements you sign, as well as copies of checks you forward to the company.
Overseas Job Scams © 1995
Copyright 1995 by the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

SAMPLE JOB SCAMplease click below:

Hiring Filipino Workers

THE PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS EMPLOYMENT ADMINISTRATION, or the POEA, is the government’s arm that manages the migration of Filipino workers overseas.  An agency attached to the Department of Labor and Employment, the POEA has four operating offices and a support group that systematically deliver services for the recruitment and deployment of Filipino workers.  These offices and support group are the following:
Pre-Employment Services Office (PSO)The PSO handles the registration or accreditation of foreign employers as principals.  It approves job orders, documents new hires or selected workers and retuning workers through the issuance of the E-receipt or Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) that it issues to all legally recruited Filipino workers.
Licensing and Regulation Office (LRO)
The LRO regulates the operations of private employment and manning agencies; conducts pre-employment orientation seminars spearheads the government’s program against illegal recruitment; and provides airport assistance to departing Filipino workers.
Adjudication Office (AO) 
The AO hears and decides cases filed against licensed private employment and manning agencies, foreign employers, and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) violating POEA rules and regulations.  It carries out legal research in aid of policy direction and case dispositions.  It maintains a rosters of OFWs serving penalties for violation of the Code of Conduct for Overseas Workers and a list of suspended, cancelled, banned, or de-listed licensed employment agencies.

Management Services Group (MSG)
The MSG provides support to the four offices through market research and development, employment standard formulation, policy research, and public information and education activities.  It maintains the POEA’s management information system (MIS) and provides fiscal and administrative services.

Over the years, the Philippines has deployed more than three million Filipino workers in 190 destinations in  various fields-professional, medical, technical, operations and maintenance, construction, hotel and seafaring sectors.

The recruitment of Filipino workers is done through a systematic recruitment network where foreign principals must course their manpower requirements through POEA-licensed private employment and manning agencies.

The Philippine - licensed agency may advertise the job vacancies in local dailies, create a manpower pool, and conduct preliminary screening and interviews of applicants as part of its services for its foreign principal. If the foreign employer is a government entity or a government- owned or controlled company, the latter may opt to course its hiring through the POEA’s Government Placement Branch (GPB).

Private employment agencies are either:
Land-based agencies, which could be any person (natural or juridical) licensed by the POEA to recruit workers for all land-based jobs for and in behalf of its foreign principal; or Manning agencies, which could be any person (natural or juridical) licensed by the POEA to recruit seafarers to man/board vessels plying international sea lanes and other related maritime activities.These licensed employment agencies ensure that only Filipino workers are qualified and medically-fit are deployed. 

Hence, Filipino workers are medically examined by government-accredited medical clinics or hospitals and trade-tested or trained by training centers authorized by the government.
A prospective employer interested to hire Filipino workers may choose from the official list of licensed private employment agencies (land-based and sea-based) available at the nearestPhilippine Embassies and Consulates  in their country, or at the POEA website,www.poea.gov.ph. This list includes POEA agencies that are Excellence and Top Performer awardees .  These agencies have been conferred these awards in recognition of their outstanding and exemplary performance in the field of overseas employment and for their vital role in uplifting the quality of life of millions of Filipinos by providing them gainful overseas employment.

2.  An employer who has identified a Philippine agent which will source his/her manpower requirement must submit the recruitment documents to the nearest Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) at the Philippine Embassy/Consulate for verification.  This process ascertains the a) existence of the company or project;  and b) the need for Filipino manpower.For land-based principals, they should submit the following:
         Special Power of Attorney or Service/Recruitment Agreement
         Master Employment Contract with the minimum contract provision
         Manpower Request.If there is no POLO at the jobsite the employer shall undergo the POEA accreditation process where the local agent submits to the POEA item a, b, and c above as well as the visa or equivalent documents.

For manning principals, they should submit the following:
         Manning agreement containing, among others, the responsibilities of both principal and manning agency with respect to the employment of seafarers;
         Special Power of Attorney;
         List of ships and their particulars including IMO number;
         Crew complement;
         Valid business license registration certificate, or equivalent document, or proof of existence of business validated or certified by the issuing authority in the host country; and
         Other documents which the POEA find necessary A foreign principal who acts as a direct employer of a land-based worker may be registered to more than one (1)  Philippine agency while a foreign principal who is licensed to operate as a foreign placement agency may be registered/ accredited a maximum of two (2) Philippine agencies subject to the conditions prescribed by the POEA.
Private land-based recruitment agencies change service fees from the employers/principals as payment for services rendered in the recruitment and placement of workers.  The employers also pay the cost of:
  • POEA processing, PhP200.00
  • Worker membership with the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), US$25.00
  • Visa Fee
Private land-based recruitment agencies are allowed to collect from its selected/hired workers a placement fee equivalent to one (1) month salary, except in countries where laws prohibit collection of fees from workers.

The exit clearance come in the form of an E-Receipt (electronic receipt) or an Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) certifying to the regularity of a workers recruitment and documentation and ensures exemption from travel tax and airport terminal fee.  It is presented at the POEA Labor Assistance Center (LAC) and the Bureau of Immigration (BI) counter at the airports, prior to departure.The E-Receipt or OEC serves as the worker’s guarantee that he/she is covered by government protection and benefits.


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