FAQs on Alien Workers
What is an Alien Employment Permit (AEP)?
An Alien Employment Permit is a document issued by the Department of Labor and Employment which authorizes a foreign national to work in the Philippines.
Who are the foreign nationals required to apply for an AEP?
- All foreign nationals who intend to engage in gainful employment in the Philippines;
- Foreign professionals who are allowed to practice their profession in the Philippines under reciprocity and other international agreements and in consultancy services pursuant to Section 7(j) of the PRC Modernization Act of 2000.
Holders of Special Investors Resident Visa (SIRV), Special Retirees Resident Visa (SRRV), Treaty Traders Visa (9d) or Special Non-Immigrant Visa (47(a)2) for as long as they occupy any executive, advisory, supervisory, or technical position in any establishment.
Who are exempted from securing AEP?
- Members of the diplomatic services and foreign government officials accredited by the Philippine government;
- Officers and staff of international organizations of which the Philippine government is a cooperating member, and their legitimate spouses desiring to work in the Philippines;
- Foreign nationals elected as members of the Governing Board who do not occupy any other position, but have only voting rights in the corporation;
- All foreign nationals granted exemption by special laws and all other laws that may be promulgated by the Congress;
- Owners and representatives of foreign principals, whose companies are accredited by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), who come to the Philippines for a limited period solely for the purpose of interviewing Filipino applicants for employment abroad;
- Foreign nationals who come to the Philippines to teach, present and/or conduct research studies in universities and colleges as visiting, exchange or adjunct professors under formal agreements between the universities or colleges in the Philippines and foreign universities or colleges; or between the Philippine government and foreign government; provided that the exemption is on a reciprocal basis; and
- Resident foreign nationals and temporary or probationary resident visa holders employed or seeking employment in the Philippines.
Where shall an application for an AEP be filed?
An application for AEP shall be filed personally or through their respective employer with the DOLE Regional Office or Field Office having jurisdiction over the intended place of work.
In case of foreign nationals to be assigned in subsidiaries, branch offices and joint ventures, and those assigned in the headquarters with oversight functions in any of the branch offices, operations or projects in the country, they may file their application in any of the DOLE Regional/Field Offices nearest their place of work.
What are the requirements in the filing of application for AEP?
Duly accomplished Application Form;
Photocopy of Passport, with visa or Certificate of Recognition for refugees;
Contract of Employment/ Appointment or Board Secretary’s Certificate of Election;
Photocopy of Mayor’s Permit to operate business or in case of locators in economic zones, Certification from the PEZA or the Ecozone Authority that the company is located and operating within the Ecozone; and Photocopy of current AEP (if for renewal)
Permit fee is P8,000 for one year validity or fraction thereof plus P3,000.00 for every additional year of validity or a fraction thereof, which shall not exceed five years, to be paid upon submission of application.
If upon evaluation, a foreign national is found to have worked without or with expired AEP prior to application, a penalty of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) shall be imposed for working without an AEP for one (1) year or fraction thereof.
Who authorizes the issuance of an AEP?
The Secretary of Labor and Employment, through the DOLE Regional Director, who has jurisdiction over the intended place of work of the foreign national, authorizes the issuance of an AEP.
Who are covered by the publication requirement?
An application for new AEP, for additional or change in position of the foreign national in the same company or subsequent assignment in related companies during the validity or renewal of the AEP will be subject for publication requirement and payment of publication fee.
If there is an objection/information filed with the Regional Office regarding the application for AEP published, how will it be resolved?
The Regional Director shall determine as to whether or not an information/objection to the application for AEP merits the denial of the application or cancellation of the AEP.
The Regional Director may require the appearance/s of either or both the foreign national and the parties providing the information/objection. If the objection is meritorious, the Regional Director will deny the application or cancel the AEP if it has been issued. If the objection is not meritorious, the Regional Director will grant the AEP.
What is the period of validity of an AEP?
The AEP shall be valid for one (1) year or co-terminus with the duration of employment, consultancy services or other modes of employment or term of office which in no case shall exceed five years. Said AEP is valid for the position/s and company for which it was issued.
In case of assignment in the company’s subsidiaries, branch offices and joint ventures and those assigned in the headquarters with oversight function in any of the branch offices, operation or projects in the country, one (1) AEP shall be required and valid for all the said assignments irrespective of their place/s.
How long is the processing period for the issuance of AEP?
If the application is filed at the Regional Office, issuance or denial of AEP shall be within 24 hours after the publication. If the application is filed at the Field Office, issuance or denial of AEP shall be within 5 working days from date of filing of application.
What are the grounds for the denial of AEP
An application for AEP may be denied for misrepresentation of facts in the application; submission of falsified documents; the foreign national has a derogatory record; or availability of a Filipino who is competent, able and willing to do the job intended for the foreign national.
What are the grounds for suspension of AEP?
The AEP may be suspended after due process based on the following:
The continued stay of the foreign national may result in damage to the interest of the industry or the country;
The employment of the foreign national is suspended by the employer or by order of the Court.
If an application has been denied or cancelled by the Regional Office, can the foreign national apply for an AEP in other Regional Offices
No, foreign nationals whose applications have been denied or whose AEPs had been cancelled shall not be allowed to re-apply in any of the DOLE Regional Offices, unless said foreign national has provided proof that the ground for denial/ cancellation/ revocation has been corrected.
Is there a remedy for a denied/cancelled or revoked AEP?
Yes, an Appeal maybe filed by any aggrieved party with the Secretary of Labor and Employment within 10 days after receipt of the Order of denial/cancellation or revocation.
Is the decision of the Secretary final and executory?
Yes, the decision of the Secretary shall be final and executory, unless a motion for reconsideration is filed within ten (10) days after receipt of the decision of the Secretary. No second motion for reconsideration shall be entertained.
When shall an application for renewal of AEP be filed?
An application for renewal of AEP must be filed before its expiration. For elective and appointive positions, applications must be filed within 15 working days after election/appointment or before expiration of AEP, if election or appointment will take place before expiration of AEP.
In case the election or appointment will take place after the expiration of the AEP, the application shall be filed before the expiration of the AEP, and shall be renewed for one year.
What are the grounds for revocation/cancellation of AEP?
Any of the following is a ground for revocation/cancellation of an AEP:
Non-compliance with any of the requirements or conditions for which the AEP was issued;
Misrepresentation of facts in the application;
Submission of falsified or tampered documents;
Meritorious objection or information against the employment of the foreign national as determined by the Regional Director;
Foreign national has a derogatory record; or
Employer terminated the employment of the foreign national.
Are there fines and penalties relative to the filing of an application for an AEP?
Yes, a fine of Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) for every year or a fraction thereof shall be imposed on foreign nationals found working without an AEP or with an expired AEP.
Is there a grace period in the filing of application for new AEP?
Yes, newly hired, elected or appointed officers are allowed to file application for new AEP without penalty within fifteen (15) working days after signing of contract, election or appointment.
However, if the appointment, election or signing of contract is more than 15 working days before the start of contract or term of office, the application may be filed before the start of contract or term of office.
What is required in the replacement of an AEP Card?
Replacement of AEP card shall require a fee of Seven Hundred Fifty Pesos (P750.00). In case of loss of AEP card, request for replacement shall be supported by an Affidavit of loss.