If you are applying for job as an OFW, it is very important to be aware of the fees associated with your job application to avoid illegal recruitment or scam. Be vigilant when you get text messages asking you to pay for reservation fees.
1. PLACEMENT FEE- Some agencies ask for placement fees more than what the law allows. Some don't, but if you are wondering how much it might cost:
If you are applying as household service worker, such as domestic helper, family driver, family cook, etc. You don't have to pay placement fee.
Seafarers or seaman are also exempted from paying placement fees.
There is a list of countries that exempts workers from paying placement fees. US (H2B Visa), UK, Ireland, Norway, Netherlands, Japan, New Zealand at Canada (Manitoba, Saskachewan, Alberta and British Columbia)
If you don't fall into the exempted category, your agency might collect or might not. If there is a placement fee that should be collected from you it should not exceed the 1 month equivalent of your basic salary. There are still agencies that hire OFWs for Middle East that does not require placement fee.
Pay only the placement fee once you have signed the contract, and ask for official receipt (OR).
It is also very important to have the appropriate visa for the job you are applying for. Never allow the agency or foreign employer to give a visa different from the job being offered to you. There are many cases of OFWs specially in the Middle East where OFWs are promised with jobs in hospitals, hotels, or restaurant but they ended up working as domestic worker. The visa on your passport can also serve as your protection, and it will help you enjoy the benefits of your profession. There are list of professions that gives you chance to bring your family with you, and your profession will be based on what is on your visa.
2. TRAINING FEE- Some jobs will require you to get training certificates if you don't have one. Training fees depend on how much the training centers charge, private training centers usually charge more. If you want to save on training fee, you can visit nearest TESDA center and check if they are providing the training and certifications you needed before applying for job. Besides, even if you don't get hired overseas, you can still use the skills you earned and you can have certificate and credentials which you can use again next time you apply for job.
3. DOCUMENTATION FEE- You will be required to submit documents like Police or Barangay Clearance, passport, NBI and other documents needed to process your application. Here is a table provided by POEA to give you ideas on how much it will cost.
4. PROCESSING AND OTHER FEES- There are also other fees you which the agency might ask you to pay. Here is a table of fees that you should pay and those that your employer should pay. Remember, you don't have to pay for your plane ticket or visa, it is the responsibility of your employer.
Observe and know your rights. Inquire, research and inform the the authority if there is anything fishy going on during the recruitment process.