Tag Archive: PSAHelpline


10 Oct 14

Have you been involuntarily separated from your job?  Were you laid off, or your designation has been dissolved and resulted in your losing your job and source of income?  Take heart.  The Social Security System (SSS) is ready to help you get back on your feet!

The SSS recently announced the availability of the SSS Unemployment Benefit for all members that have been involuntarily removed from their jobs.  This is part of the provisions of RA 11199 or the Social Security Act of 2018.

What is the SSS Unemployment Benefit?

This is the seventh benefit program of the SSS and is available to all member-applicants who have been removed from their jobs (fired, laid-off, offered separation by employer).  It is a cash benefit equivalent to half of their average monthly salary credit (AMSC) for a maximum of two months.

Who is covered by the Unemployment Benefit?

All SSS members who are involuntarily separated from employment, including OFWs and Kasambahays may file for Unemployment Benefit claims.  Some exceptions are:

  • Employees must not be over 60 years of age at the time of the involuntary separation;
  • Underground mine workers must not be over 50 years of age;
  • Racehorse jockeys should not be over 55 years old.

What are the conditions for claiming the Unemployment Benefit?

  • The covered employee must have paid at least 36 monthly contributions
  • 12 months of which should be in the 18-month period immediately preceding the month of involuntary separation.
  • Must not have settled unemployment insurance or involuntary separation benefit within the last three years prior to the involuntary separation from employment.
  • The reason for separation from employment must not be the fault of the employee or a result of the employee’s negligence.  The only acceptable cases are redundancy, retrenchment or downsizing, closure of operations, the commission of a crime or offense of the employer against the employee or any of his immediate family members, and inhuman or unbearable treatment by the employer.  The DOLE determines the acceptable reasons for involuntary separation.
  • An employee applying for unemployment benefits may be disqualified if he or she has shown serious misconduct, willful disobedience to lawful orders, as well as gross and habitual neglect of duties.

What are the limitations of the Unemployment Benefits?

A member that has been involuntarily separated from his job must file his claim within one year from the date of his separation.

A covered employee may only claim once every three years starting from the date of involuntary separation.  In case he has more than one compensable contingency within the same period, only the highest benefit shall be paid.

What are the requirements when filing a claim for Unemployment Benefits?

  • Original and photocopy of one primary ID card or
  • Any two ID cards or documents, both with signature and at least one with photo
  • Certification establishing the nature of involuntary separation issued by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) through its regional office
  • Notice of Termination from Employer or
  • Affidavit of Termination of Employment

Applicants may file their claims at any SSS branch.

How will the funds be released to the member?

The SSS shall pay the member through the SSS Unified Multi-purpose ID (UMID) cards enrolled as ATM or through the Union Bank of the Philippines Quick Card account.

All involuntary separations that happened on March 5, 2019, onwards are covered by the unemployment insurance.

Source:

www.sss.gov.ph

www.businessmirror.com.ph

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10 Oct 1

When you fill out the online application form for your passport appointment, it is as good as filling out an actual document – all the information you place there will be considered true and correct by the DFA.  But what if you realize you placed the wrong information in the form after you have submitted it?  Can you retrieve it and apply the needed corrections?

Well, the answer is both yes and no.  Read today’s blog to know how you can remedy wrong entries in your online passport application form and avoid losing your appointment.

Changing the location and schedule of your appointment

According to the DFA, the only information you can change in your online appointment are the location and the schedule.  If you changed your mind about the DFA office where you want to be interviewed for your passport application, you can actually change it online.  You can also do the same for your schedule as long as you follow the guidelines of the DFA for changing confirmed schedules.  Read this blog from last month for the complete details (Can I Reschedule My Confirmed Passport Appointment at the DFA?).

Correcting mistakes such as misspelled names, wrong gender, or wrong application type (new instead of renewal).

You can no longer correct these types of mistakes online but you can have the DFA personnel correct it for you during your interview.  Your application will go through a verification process and you will also be given time to review the entries in your passport before they finalize it for printing.  Make sure to mention which entries you need to be corrected during your interview and review your passport on the screen carefully.

You do not need to make another appointment if you think you committed errors in your application form.  Just go ahead and show up on your scheduled appointment and make sure to mention the corrections you need to apply to your application form.

As always, do not forget to bring the necessary IDs and documents such as your PSA birth certificate and any government-issued ID, for passport application and renewal so you don’t waste your appointment.  Also, always double-check your entries in the online form before hitting the submit button so you minimize the risks of sending out incorrect information into the system.

Stay tuned for more blogs about passport application and renewal.  Got questions? Send us an email.

References:

www.dfa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

www.filipiknow.net

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9 Sept 30

My friend’s dog tore his brand new passport apart, three months before he was scheduled to leave for Singapore.  He cried like a little boy while collecting the scraps of paper that was once his primary travel document.

How do you get a replacement for your damaged passport?  Read this.

First off, we need to define what damaged passport means.  According to the Department of Foreign Affairs, your passport is considered damaged or mutilated when:

  • The data page or any information on it is torn or damaged to the point of unreadability.
  • A damaged passport microchip that is no longer machine-readable.
  • One or more pages have been torn out or missing.
  • Passport cover no longer attached to the booklet.
  • The booklet is unstitched, severely damaged by water, or with visa stamps that have bled out.
  • Passport picture is tampered and no longer clear/visible.

If your passport exhibits any of the above descriptions, you can consider it as damaged and therefore, needs to be replaced.  The DFA treats the replacement of damaged passports as new applications and so anyone seeking to have a damaged passport replaced must go through the same process as when you are applying for a new one.  Here’s how:

  1. The first thing you need to do is to get an appointment online and pay the corresponding passport fee to confirm your slot.
  2. Submit a notarized Affidavit of Explanation as to how, when, and where your passport was damaged or mutilated.
  3. Bring an original and photocopy of the first and last pages of the damaged passport.
  4. Prepare P350 as a penalty fee for the damaged passport.

You are also encouraged to bring an original copy of your PSA birth certificate especially if your personal details are hardly recognizable in the damaged passport.  You can get a copy online and have it delivered to your home at www.psahelpline.ph.

There shall be a 15-day clearing period within which your application will go through verification and your old passport records will be tracked and reviewed.

There you have it.  The process and requirements may be a bit different but rest assured that the DFA can have your damaged passport replaced.

Just the same, take care of your passport and other important IDs and documents.  Keep them in locked drawers or plastic containers to keep them safe from pets, pests, flood, and maybe even fire.  Always have duplicates available in your office as well so you would have a ready reference in case you lose the original ones.

Thanks for dropping by!

References:

www.dfa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

www.filipiknow.net

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9 Sept 23

The Department of Foreign Affairs applied some changes in the passport appointment system last year in order to make more room for more passport applicants.  Getting an appointment with the DFA has become so difficult for most Filipinos because the appointment slots get blocked off really fast.  It was found out that a significant number of people who reserved these slots never make good with their commitment, resulting to more and more people having to wait for a month or more just to get an appointment with the DFA.

Last year, the DFA tweaked the process a bit so that a passport applicant who reserves a slot online can confirm his appointment by paying his passport fee first.  In the past, you pay your passport fee after you have gone through the entire application or renewal process.  This was seen as one of the major reasons why appointment slots get booked right away and unused reservations remain blocked until the day of the person’s appointment (usually 30 to 60 days from the time it was reserved.). With the new process, an applicant is given only 48 hours, from the time he is generated a reference number, to confirm his appointment by paying his passport fee at any of the accredited payment partners of the DFA.  If he or she does not post any payment within the prescribed period, his appointment is canceled and is made free for others to reserve.

So how do you pay your passport fee so you don’t lose your reserved slot?  Read this:

  1. When you are done with the appointment setting process, click on the Proceed to Payment button on the screen.
  2. You will be taken to the newly launched Philippine passport ePayment portal, showing the total fee you need to pay and the authorized payment centers where you can make your payment.
  3. Click Proceed. You should receive an email with your reference number. Take note of this number or print it out and bring it with you when you make your payment at your chosen Payment Center.
  4. Below is a list of payment centers that you can choose from:
  • Bayad Center outlets
  • ECPay
  • PeraHub
  • Robinson’s Business Center and Department Stores
  • Waltermart Department Store
  • 7-11 Stores
  • USCC (Western Union)
  • Villarica Pawnshop
  • Other payment centers, as well as the credit/debit card payment facility, will be made available soon.

Other reminders when paying at Payment Centers:

  1. The paid passport fee is non-refundable. If you fail to make it to your appointment, you cannot re-schedule or demand a refund.
  2. The Payment Centers may charge you an additional P50 as a convenience fee.
  3. If you are paying for more than one passport appointment (ex: family appointment or group application), each person’s appointment will be assigned its own reference number. Payments for group applications will also be on a per reference number basis – you pay for each, not as a group.
  4. You may contact the ePayment Portal Help Desk at (02) 234-3488 or email them at info@passport.gov.ph

Keep your receipt after making the payment and make sure to bring it with you on your appointment and when you claim your passport.

References:

www.passport.gov.ph

www.dfa.gov.ph

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9 Sept 20

The answers are both yes and no.

The DFA recently announced that the PSA birth certificate is no longer a requirement when getting your passport renewed.  While this is true for passport renewal transactions, it does not apply to other cases of passport transactions with the DFA.

The PSA birth certificate remains to be a major requirement for all other passport transactions; below is the list of other transactions with the DFA this is still a requirement:

  1. First-time passport applications.
  2. When having a damaged or mutilated passport replaced.
  3. Applicants that are included in the DFA watchlist.
  4. Renewal of the brown and green old Philippine passports that has no complete middle name of the owner.
  5. Changes in personal information such as for married women or if changing from married name to maiden name.

Be properly guided, friends!

 

References:

www.dfa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

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9 Sept 18

Another common question we receive in our email, one that we asked ourselves many months back.  And the answer is, no.

Based on my observation, one of the main reasons why it has become so difficult to get an available passport appointment slot is because people do not take their reservations seriously.  They will reserve a slot and then will not show up for their appointment.  This practice actually results in a 2-month wait period for other passport applicants.

In June 2016, the DFA implemented the 30-day ban for passport applicants who do not show up on their appointment date. They are tagged by the system and are not able to reserve an appointment slot for 30 days after their original appointment date.

Just last year, the DFA also tweaked the passport application process so that applicants now have to pay the passport fee before they appear at the DFA for their interview.  The payment confirms their appointment and the DFA shall hold the date and time for the applicant, unless he or she requests to have it re-scheduled.

Re-scheduling can be accommodated only once and will depend on the availability of the appointment slot that the applicant wishes to take.  Also, a weekday appointment can only be re-scheduled to another weekday; you cannot take a weekend date if your original reservation was a weekday.

If you still fail to show up on the re-scheduled date, your passport fee will be forfeited and you will have to go through the reservation process again if you still wish to continue.

I personally think this is the best way that the DFA can be fair to everyone in terms of granting appointment slots to passport applicants.

Visit us again tomorrow for more helpful information about passport applications and renewals.

 

Reference:

www.dfa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

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9 Sept 17

We covered this topic last year but thought it would be good to write about it again since we receive a lot of questions about changing one’s name in his or her passport.

Married Filipinas are not mandated by law to use their husband’s last name – whether in their IDs, transactions and yes, even in their passports.  Women have the option to retain their maiden last name even after they are married.

If you are married and wish to use your husband’s last name in your passport, you need to present a copy of your PSA marriage certificate to the DFA when you renew your existing passport.

On the other hand, if you have been using your husband’s last name in your passport and have decided to switch back to your maiden name, you can only do so under two circumstances:

  1. If your marriage has been annulled or
  2. If you have been widowed.

In both cases, you need to present supporting documents to the DFA before you are issued a passport with your maiden last name in it.  If your marriage was annulled, you must present an annotated copy of your PSA marriage certificate, one that bears the court order or finality of the annulment.  If you are a widow, you need to present the PSA death certificate of your spouse.

So ladies, remember that once you decide to use your married name in your passport, you cannot simply go back to using your maiden last name anytime. So think about it before you change your last name in your IDs.

Reference:

www.psa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

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9 Sept 16

A confirmed appointment at the DFA means that particular date and time is reserved for you for your passport application or renewal.  Last year, there was a clamor for the DFA to systematize their online appointment process because applicants could not seem to get any available date (at any of the most accessible DFA offices) no matter how long they wait online.  Later on, DFA advised the public of the best times to get an appointment: 9AM and 12PM.  Apparently, these are the hours when the system refreshes and the available dates are updated.  Also, they required applicants to pay their passport fees first before their reserved slots are officially confirmed and blocked off.  No payment within a specified number of hours after reservation means that the time and date you reserved will be freed up for others.  Unlike before when applicants are only required to pay their passport fees after they have gone through the entire passport application or renewal process at the DFA.

But what if an applicant wishes to change his appointment date after he has confirmed (meaning, has already paid for his passport fees)?  Is there a way to accommodate this or are all confirmed appointments considered final?

Read on:

The passport appointment website, www.passport.gov.ph has a Reschedule button that allows applicants with confirmed appointments to change their appointment date and time.  So the answer to our questions is Yes.  However, you need to take note of the following when requesting your appointment to be rescheduled:

  1. Rescheduling is dependent on the availability of the appointment slots. This means that if your desired new date and time is no longer available, you cannot be accommodated. You may have to keep checking the site to see if your preferred time has been freed up.
  2. You can only reschedule once.
  3. You can only reschedule a weekday appointment to another weekday – not on a weekend.

Are you thinking of rescheduling your confirmed appointment with the DFA? Well, we hope this article helped.

Visit us again tomorrow for more information and helpful tips when getting a new or renewing a Philippine passport.

References:

http://www.passport.gov.ph

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9 Sept 13

As soon as your baby has a PSA birth certificate, you can already apply for his very own passport.  Today, we are going to help you with all the important information needed when getting a passport for babies and minors.

Read on.

A minor is defined as someone who is below 18 years old and those that are over 18 years old but are unable to fully take care of themselves because of physical or mental disability or condition.

The DFA identifies minors into two categories:

  • 0 to 7 years old are:
    • Babies
    • Kids aged seven years old and below
    • No need to secure an appointment online and are entitled to the courtesy lane with their parents and minor siblings.
  • 8 to 17 years old are:
    • Must secure an online appointment for passport applications and renewals.
    • They can access the courtesy lane if they have another sibling aged 7 years old and below who are also applying for or renewing his passport.

A minor child’s passport is only valid for 5 years, unlike that of the regular passport’s 10-year validity.

Steps in getting a Philippine Passport for babies and minors:

  1. Complete the requirements before going to your preferred DFA branch.
  • Confirmed online appointment (if applicable – 8 years old to 17 years old)
  • Duly accomplished passport application form.  You can download a copy of the form here.
  • Personal appearance of the minor child and either parent or authorized legal companion.
  • PSA birth certificate. (How to get PSA birth certificate.)
  • In case the child does not have a PSA birth certificate or a Report of Birth yet, you can submit the following:
    • PSA-authenticated Certified True Copy of LCR Birth Certificate
    • Original copy of Report of Birth or first endorsement from the Consular Records Division IF YOUR CHILD WAS BORN ABROAD ONLY.
  • PSA Marriage Certificate if only one parent will appear before the DFA.  If the parents are not married, an Affidavit of Support and/or Consent must be executed by the mother if she will not be present during the passport application.
  • Passport or any valid government-issued ID of the parent or authorized guardian that will accompany the child.
  • If the child is already attending school, present his valid school ID.
  1. Submit all the requirements to the DFA. Your child’s photo will be taken by a DFA representative during the application process.
  2. Pay the passport fee and make sure you are issued your receipt and a slip of paper with the date when you are to return to the DFA to claim the passport. Keep your receipt as this will serve as your claim stub.
  Regular Express
Aseana and Consular Offices (within Metro Manila) Php 950 (12 working days) Php 1200 (6 working days)
Consular Offices (outside Metro Manila) Php 950 (12 working days) Php 1200 (7 working days)
  1. Claim the child’s passport.

The DFA will keep the passport for 6 months; after which, they shall discard the passport and you will have to go through the process again if you wish to get another one.

 

References:

www.passport.gov.ph

www.filipiknow.net

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9 Sept 12a

Is this your first time to apply for a Philippine passport?  Not sure what documents and IDs to bring?  No idea how to set an online appointment?

We’re here to help!

Read on for the complete guide to applying for your very first passport at the DFA.

Requirements:

  1. You must have a confirmed online appointment with the DFA.
  • Logon to passport.gov.ph and click on the Schedule An Appointment link. Follow the instructions and step-by-step guide.
  • Pay your passport processing fee at any accredited DFA ePayment portal (the list will also be shown on the website and will be sent to your email.).
  • If you are a senior citizen, PWD, pregnant, a minor child, or a Solo Parent ID holder, you are exempted from making an online appointment and can proceed directly to the DFA office of your choice for a walk-in application.
  1. Printout of your passport appointment packet.
  • The link to the documents will be sent to you by the DFA to your email (the email address you provided during the online appointment).
  • Print the documents and bring these with you on the day of your appointment.
  1. Personal appearance at the DFA office of your choice.
  • You cannot send a representative to finish the application for you. If you fail to appear at the DFA on the date and time of your appointment, your application will be voided and you will not be able to apply for an online appointment for 30 days.
  1. Bring a valid ID (original and photocopy).
  • To be sure, bring more than one valid ID and reproduce each. Below is a list of acceptable IDs for passport application:
    • SSS ID
    • GSIS ID
    • UMID Card
    • PhlPost ID (postal ID)
    • COMELEC ID or Voter’s ID
    • Driver’s License
    • Senior Citizen ID
    • School ID (for students)
    • PRC ID
    • OWWA ID
    • PNP Firearms License
    • Airman License (issued August 2016 onwards)
  • The DFA DOES NOT accept PhilHealth ID and TIN ID.
  • NBI Clearance only serves as a supporting document.
  1. Bring an original copy of your PSA Birth Certificate.
  • It must be an original copy authenticated by the PSA and printed on SECPA.
  • You can order yours at psahelpline.ph
  • Alternatively, you can also present a Certified True Copy (CTC) of your birth certificate from the LCR of your birthplace.
  1. Married women must bring a copy of her PSA Marriage Certificate.
  • If you were married abroad, bring a copy of your Report of Marriage, authenticated by the PSA.
  • For women married to a foreign national, bring the original and photocopy of the Commission of Filipino Overseas (CFO) Guidance and Counseling Certificate of Attendance.

I hope this article helped you in preparing for your passport application.  Tomorrow, we are going to feature the passport requirements for minor children who are applying for a passport for the first time.

Visit us again!

Need quick facts about passport applications, requirements, and fees? Read this blog: QUICK FACTS FOR PASSPORT APPLICANTS AT THE DFA.

Source: www.dfa.gov.ph

www.passport.gov.ph

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