How OFWs Can Get Or Renew An NBI Clearance Abroad

5 min. read By eCompareMo on

How can I get or renew my NBI clearance if I’m working abroad? That is a question OFWs need to ask even before they leave the country, as this is one of the most important OFW requirements.

OFWs currently stationed abroad can use this guide on how to get or renew an NBI clearance, even outside the country.

Purpose of an NBI Clearance outside the Philippines

Overseas Filipino Workers need to get a Philippine NBI clearance for employment purposes or a resident visa application.

The resident visa application applies to the following:

  • An OFW who is seeking to live permanently in the foreign country they are working in
  • A Filipino who may have left the country to migrate to another country

NOTE: The submission of an NBI clearance for a resident visa does not pertain to all countries. Some may require the clearance for the application process and others may not.

(Read: Guide To The Most Powerful IDs In The Philippines – And How To Get Them)

NBI Clearance application process

The NBI clearance online application has made it easier for both OFWs and Filipinos at home to get one. No more long queues that start early in the morning, and the application process is much faster now.

If you are an OFW, you don’t have to go home if you need to apply for an NBI clearance. You can do it all online.

You have two options for online NBI clearance application abroad:

  • Through a proxy (with an authorized representative)
  • Through mailing (without authorized representative)

Application/renewal with an authorized representative

A relative or trusted friend can be your proxy if you are in a rush. The process on how to apply for an NBI clearance goes as follows:

1. Collect all the required documents and send them to your chosen representative through international courier* services like FedEx, DHL, or Air Power.

Documents required for an NBI Application:

Document Where and how to get it
NBI Form No. 5 (Fingerprint Form)

You can get this form from the Philippine Consulate/Embassy. Your representative can also get this from NBI UN Avenue branch.

Fill out the form and get fingerprinted (rolled impressions). The personnel during your fingerprint impression must sign the form. Fees may apply.

Letter of Authorization Duly signed
Photocopy of passport Bio page and/or the latest stamp of departure, as a proof of your presence overseas.
2×2 Photo in a white background Must be captured within three months prior to application. Must be clear and not in sleeveless attire.
Valid IDs Provided by the host country

Documents required for an NBI Clearance renewal:

Document Where and how to get it
Previous NBI clearance (original) This replaces the NBI Form No. 5, but it’s better to have both.
Letter of Authorization Duly signed
Photocopy of passport Bio page and/or the latest stamp of departure, as a proof of your presence overseas.
Valid IDs Provided by the host country

*NOTE: Courier services usually take three days or more.

2. Register an NBI account online and provide your personal information.

3. If you already have one, create an online appointment through the NBI online services website. You should only use ‘PASSPORT’ as the valid ID to present.

4. Pick your desired schedule. Since you’re abroad, it must be noted that the only branch you can apply at is the main office: NBI Clearance Center UN Avenue, Manila.

5. Choose a payment method. Either you or the representative can pay the clearance fee, depending on the method you preferred.

6. Get your reference number. Your representative should keep it.

7. The representative should bring all the requirements and present the reference number to the NBI central office at UN Avenue.

8. The representative should also bring his/her IDs for verification of the authorization letter to claim the NBI clearance.

9. When the clearance is released, your proxy should mail it to the country you’re living in.

10. Upon receiving, check the authenticity of the NBI dry seal

11. Go to the Consulate or Embassy and have your NBI clearance stamped.

(Read: What Are The Costs Of Working Abroad?)

Application/renewal without an authorized representative

If none of your relatives or friends can do the task for you, you can still process your application or renewal by mail. These are the steps:

1. Collate the requirements you will need to mail.

Documents required for NBI application

Document Where and how to get it
NBI Form No. 5 (Fingerprint Form)

You can get this form from the Philippine Consulate/Embassy. Your representative can also get this from NBI UN Avenue branch.

Fill out the form and get fingerprinted (rolled impressions). The personnel during your fingerprint impression must sign the form. Fees may apply.

Letter of Authorization Duly signed
Photocopy of passport Bio page and/or the latest stamp of departure, as a proof of your presence overseas
2×2 Photo in a white background Must be captured within three months prior to application. Must be clear. Do not wear sleeveless attire.
Valid IDs Provided by the host country

(Read: Adulting 101: A Fresh Grad’s Guide To Employee Requirements And IDs)

Documents required for NBI renewal

Document Where and how to get it
Previous NBI clearance (original) Since they can pull up your biometrics, NBI Form No. 5 may not be needed anymore. However, it’s better to present both to prevent delays.
Photocopy of passport Latest departure stamp or bio page, as proof that you’re abroad
Valid IDs Issued by the country you’re living/working in

2. Don’t forget to attach a money order or bank draft worth P200 to the director of NBI. Please, do not enclose cash or personal checks. Credit card is not also accepted.

3. Mail the completed requirements to the following address: Mailed Clearance Section 3rd Floor, NBI Clearance Bldg., UN Avenue, Ermita, Manila

It might be a good idea to check beforehand if there is a specific person at the Mailed Clearance Section you can address.

4. Create an online account and fill out the information page. If you have an existing account, just log in to NBI clearance website.

5. Go to the Applicant’s Information Page, on the right part of the page, click on the button that says, “Apply for Clearance”.

6. Since you don’t have a representative, you can skip the online appointment (NBI branch, schedule, and time).

7. Proceed directly to the payment method and take note of the reference number by taking a photo or writing it down. The NBI clearance fee is P130 plus P25 for the use of electronic system. Your payment center also includes additional charges.

8. When the NBI receives your documents from the courier, they will verify and process your application/renewal within five business days.

9. Always check your online account for any processing update.

10. When you receive the clearance, validate its authenticity by checking the embossed dry seal. Place your right thumb mark on the right space.

11. Further steps may be included, so consult the Embassy.

With the online system, OFWs found a faster and easier way for the application and renewal of NBI clearance from abroad.

What other processes should the government digitize for convenience? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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