An OFW’s Guide to Getting NBI Clearance from Abroad

For many OFWs who have been working abroad for a number of years already, updating government records or requesting new ones can be a challenge given the fact that most of the important transactions for these documents are done only in the Philippines.

However, this does not mean that you cannot request or file for any government-issued documents because you are not physically present in the Philippines. Such is the case for getting an NBI Clearance even when you are based overseas.

Screengrab of the NBI Clearance Website

Here’s How to Get an NBI Clearance Even if Working Overseas

An NBI clearance serves a number of purposes and is valid for a year, and can still be processed even if the person who needs it is outside of the country.

An NBI Clearance can be used as proof of identity, to make changes in legal documents, for local employment, and traveling overseas. Some foreign employers and recruitment agencies for work abroad require this document to make sure that you are in good standing with the law, as well. But if you’re required to get this document even when overseas, here are the things that you need to do:

Step # 1: Visit the consular section of the Philippine Embassy in your host country. Request for an NBI Clearance Application Form (Form No. 5).

Step # 2: Fill out the form completely, and be sure to affix your signatures properly in the document.

Step # 3: Attach a recent 2×2 ID picture with white background.  Indicate your name and signature at the back of the photo.

Step # 4: Furnish a photocopy of your Philippine passport and other valid government IDs.

Step # 5: Write an authorization letter for your representative in the Philippines. Be sure to affix your signature in the letter, as well.

Step # 6: Mail the filled-out application form, photo, photocopies of passport and IDs, and authorization letter to your representative in the Philippines.

Step # 7: Log on to the NBI Clearance website, and provide the required details to create an account.

Step # 8: In the online form, select the NBI Clearance Center located in United Nations Ave., Ermita, Manila. Instruct your representative to go to this center, as this is the only one that accommodates NBI Clearance applications submitted via authorized representatives.

Step # 9: Once you have submitted your application, keep a copy of your reference number. The NBI will use this to retrieve your application and data online.

Step # 10: Pay the NBI clearance fee. You can either do this by paying via any Bayad Center or through other payment methods such as

Step # 11: Wait for the notification from the NBI via e-mail or SMS informing you that your document is already available and ready for pick-up at the NBI Center in Ermita, Manila.

Step # 12: Once your authorized representative has claimed your NBI clearance, ask them to send it to you by mail so that you can use it for whatever purpose you need it for.

Note: The processing period for an NBI clearance usually takes about five business days, so be sure to take this into consideration when planning for your NBI Clearance application.

Your NBI clearance will only be valid for one year so be sure to only get one if you have an immediate use for it. Also, when applying for a copy of this document, be sure to follow the above-listed steps and to consider the time it will take to get your document mailed (approximately three weeks to a month) so that you can adjust accordingly.

ALSO READ:  Services Offered by Singapore Philippine Embassy and Overseas Labor Office