Monday, December 9, 2019

OFW Guide: how to avoid illegal recruiters when finding job abroad

In hopes of landing great career opportunities and providing better lives for their families, aspiring Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) had to spend a hefty amount of money, do a lot of paperwork, and leave their loved ones back in the Philippines. 

However, not everyone is as lucky as they thought. With more and more Filipinos willing to secure a job outside the country, many of them were deceived by unauthorized recruitment agencies – false documents, assigned with a different job from what was promised, and robbed of their hard-earned money. Just like this guy in this video: 

You might think this is funny but being a victim of illegal recruitment is no joke. To make sure you or the people you know will not be a victim of illegal recruitment,, the Philippines' leading overseas job site, shares important reminders when looking for a job abroad. 

✔ Apply only at POEA-licensed recruitment agencies

First thing that a jobseeker has to check is if the agency they are dealing with is authorized by Philippine Overseas Employment Authority (POEA) to operate. Transact only with authorized representatives and agencies that have official job orders. The license number should be conspicuously displayed upon the entrance of the agency or you may visit to verify if an agency is indeed licensed.

Alternatively, also generates the data from POEA under the “Validate POEA License” tool where you can verify if a particular agency is authorized. 

✔ Transact only within the registered business address 
It is advised to not engage in any recruitment activities done in malls, residential areas, and restaurants outside their registered business address. If recruitment is conducted in the province or during a job fair, aspiring OFWs should check if the agency has a Special Recruitment Authority (SRA) or Job Fair Authority issued by POEA or ask the Public Employment Service Office (PESO) of the concerned LGU. 

✔  Be mindful of fees
Victims of illegal recruitments reportedly paid an exorbitant amount of money for placement and processing fees when they should not. reminds employees that a placement fee is only equivalent to one month’s salary, exclusive of documentation and processing costs. Employers should also shoulder all the payments for visa, airfare, and processing costs. Most importantly, do not pay without signing a valid employee contract and official receipt.     
✔  Accept job offers using work visa 
Many illegal recruitment agencies send Filipinos abroad only with a tourist visa. Keep away from possible legal conflicts in other countries by only accepting job offers that give you work visa. Beware of unclear and unspecific job orders as it can also be a sign of an unauthorized recruitment. 

✔ Report an illegal recruiter immediately 
Should an agency seem to be suspicious or fail to meet the standards mentioned above, immediately report them to POEA by calling 722-11-44 or emailing

Although a promising job offer abroad is pretty tempting, it is also one’s accountability to be on the lookout and be wary of unauthorized recruiters. 

To explore more career opportunities overseas through POEA-accredited recruitment agencies, visit


  1. Hello Mommy, ako dati muntik ng maloko ng recruitment agency, maigi na lng nadetect agad namin na fake xa, kc may biglang sumugod na client nila, kaya nawindang kami buti na lang hndi pa kami nakakapagbgay ng recruitment fe , thanks kay Lord. Dahil sa trauma na yun, hindi na kami tumuloy umalis, sign na din cguro ni Papa God na dto n lng kami sa Pinas. Thanks for the tips mommy Reylen Castro

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