It is no secret that a lot of Filipinos are terrific and dedicated workers. That’s mainly reason why we are in Vietnam. A lot of Filipinos in Vietnam are also employed as Household Service Workers (HSW).
This post is a public service for Filipinos working abroad. I’m sure most OFWs know about this but sometimes, it’s good to remind those overstepping their authority.
Most recently, a friend got fired from her job and her passport was held by her employer. She wants to go home but she can’t without her passport.
“The passport remains at all times the property of the Philippine government, the holder being a mere possessor thereof. The fraudulent acquisition, loss or destruction of the Passport is a crime punishable under the law, with penalties stipulated under RA 8239. The Consular Officer is authorized to determine if the applicant can apply for a passport, and what documentary evidence must be presented.”
So what to do? Report immediately to the the Philippine Embassy. In Vietnam, you can report to email@example.com.
You may also request for a Travel Document (TD). This way, you can go home to the Philippines and process your passport from there. It takes around 6 weeks for passports to be processed in by the Philippine Embassy in Vietnam so that may not be ideal.
“Filipino tourists who lost their passports in Vietnam may be issued a Travel Document (TD) after submission of the following requirements:
- Affidavit of Loss (to be executed in person at the Embassy, stating in detail the circumstances under which such loss occurred). Fee: USD25.00
- Police Report (with English translation notarized by a local notary public)
- Other supporting documents as may be required by the Consular Officer (ex: valid company ID, marriage certificate, PRC ID, NBI clearance, driver’s license, voter’s ID, school records, or any genuine document that contains the applicant’s personal information)
For TD, the Police Report must be authenticated/acknowledged by the Embassy, since this will be submitted to the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila as one of the requirements for obtaining a new passport. A TD is valid for one-way travel back to the Philippines only and is issued in case of emergency. The processing fee for a TD is US$30.00 and US$25.00 for authentication/acknowledgement of the Police Report.”
And if you’re an employer wanting to hire a Filipino HSW, here are the requirements:
And while we’re at this, the next Consular Mission of the Philippine Embassy to Saigon shall be on September 21 and 22.
This is a good piece of information to have especially for those whose employers get their passports to have control over them. I have read cases like that even here in the US! Thanks for putting it out there. 🙂