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How to apply for the OEC for your Filipino domestic helper in Malaysia

Published on 15 Dec 2023, last updated on 2 Feb 2024

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What is an OEC?

The Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) is a document issued by the Philippine Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) to certify that a Filipino domestic worker is registered for legal employment abroad.

The OEC is required when your worker first exits the Philippines to start legal employment in Malaysia. It is only valid for 60 days. Since it’s only valid for 60 days, Filipino workers must re-apply for a new OEC whenever they exit and re-enter Malaysia. Workers may be turned away from returning to Malaysia at the Philippine Immigration border if they do not have an OEC.

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Ways to apply for an OEC

First option - Apply online before exiting Malaysia through the DMW’s Online Services Portal

  1. Sign up and get e-registration details to log into her account
  2. Log into her account and go to “Balik Mangagawa” on the right
  3. Follow the instructions and key in all of the required information
  4. If her existing employment details match DMW’s system, she should be able to receive and download your OEC approval online.

Your helper may not be able to successfully apply and receive her OEC online if she encounters an error message while trying to register her account, or if she has successfully logged in, but her employment details are outdated/require verification with DWM. If so, she can visit the DMW Help Desk for instructions on how to submit an error ticket to rectify these errors. If that still does not work, she is advised to visit POLO Malaysia to update/verify/fix her details over-the-counter before being able to proceed with her online application.

The DMW Help Desk has listed several issues that you may request a ticket for assistance to resolve (framed in red below).

DMW Help Desk instructions for helpers facing IT errors while applying for OEC

Second option - Apply physically at POLO Malaysia

If your helper is unable to apply for her OEC with the first option, she should visit POLO’s office to do so in person. The office will still request that she register for an account on their DMW Service Portal, but will be able to assist her in real-time if she encounters any difficulties.

Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO)

No. 95 Jalan Perkasa

Taman Maluri 55100

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Tel. Nos. 0321612222 / 03-21814330

Whatsapp Hotline: 0178837089

[Google maps link: https://goo.gl/maps/mvfibmkrUJwX9sBo8]

Third option: Apply in the Philippines at least 1 week before boarding her return flight to Malaysia

If Option 1 and 2 fails and your helper runs out of the time to apply for her OEC before she exits Malaysia, she can still get this done in the Philippines at any Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) Office. Your helper should not leave this to the last minute in case there are any delays in OEC processing.

An OEC can only be applied for by the helper directly, and agencies like Pinkcollar are unable to represent the employer/ helper to obtain an OEC on her behalf. Though you may assist your helper as her employer, the Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur encourages all Filipino workers in Malaysia to carry out this online registration on their own as their personal accounts would store confidential data and Philippine government-related information.

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Documents required for OEC Application

The following documents are required for your helper to apply for her OEC:

a. Verified POEA contract (originals or copies are accepted)

b. Your worker’s original passport valid for at least six (6) months before her return to Malaysia

c. Your worker’s multiple-entry valid work permit in Malaysia, ideally valid for at least 3 months upon re-entry to Malaysia

d. Your worker’s private insurance copy in Malaysia (occasionally asked)

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Validity period of the OEC

Once an OEC is issued, it will be valid for sixty (60) days and your worker must return to Malaysia within those 60 days. As such, it is important to time your helper’s OEC application such that her return flight to Malaysia falls within 60 days from the date of issuance.

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Pre-requirements for OEC Application

  1. Applying for an OEC at the POLO Malaysia will only be available to workers who already have an existing registered DMW contract with the Philippine government in the past.
  2. For workers who have entered Malaysia to work without engaging POEA’s formal legal processes and have only obtained a verified POEA contract AFTER they receive a Malaysian work permit, the worker will be required to register on the POEA Online Services Portal and make an appointment to apply for their first OEC at a POEA office in the Philippines.
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Other requirements for your helper to legally exit and re-enter the country

Apart from a valid OEC, the following is required to ensure that your worker can board her flight to return to Malaysia to work:

1. A valid and duly verified DMW Employment Contract

2. A valid Malaysian work permit

3. A passport that is valid for at least 6 months on the date of travel

Read about steps to ensure your helper is able to exit and re-enter the country legally.

Pinkcollar Employers are recommended to inform our Post-Placement team if/when your helper is attending to return for holiday. Our Post-Placement team typically conducts an in-office pre-annual leave procedure to run helpers through documentation requirements and other responsibilities before their departure.

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