POEA Reminders To Avoid Illegal Recruiters


The road to a successful OFW life starts with a decision; a decision that would make you think about everything.  Once that decision has been made, the next step is to find an agency that would aid you in your journey.  There are numerous agencies that offer different types of jobs in different countries. However, not all of these agencies are legitimate and licensed.  Furthermore, they can be the reason of your failure.  Finding a good, licensed agency is as good as finding a rewarding job.  But we still cannot disregard the fact that there are illegal recruiters here and there.  The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) gave ways on how OFWs can be sure that they are not dealing with bogus recruiters.

Be in contact with licensed recruitment agencies Only

There are a lot of businesses that would say they also offer placement of jobs to different countries.  Although some might seem real, usually they’re not.  Avoid consulting training centers, travel agencies, consultancy firms, and foundations that say they can promise jobs abroad.  Contact recruitment agencies that has documented proof of licensure and legitimacy.  In addition, transact with authorized representatives of a licensed agency.  Avoid under-the-table deals as this might cause you to fail your application.

Consult POEA as well

If you found a job in a country, double-check its availability with POEA.  Most of the time, illegal recruiters would have little to no knowledge of the available jobs in certain countries.  Consult POEA whether the position you are applying for has an approved JO (Job Order).

Read:How to Check Job Order Online on POEA Website

Visit the business address of the authorized agency Only

Some people think that going under-the-table would get the job done easier and faster.  Well in fact, this might be one cause of application failure.  Be sure to inquire, discuss, and transact at the registered address of the agency only.


In payment, only pay the allowable placement fee.  The amount should only be one-month salary.  Although there are cases where charging of placement fees is prohibited.  Moreover, pay these fees AFTER you have signed the employment contract.  Also, demand for an official receipt that reflects the total amount that you have paid.

Bogus Internet ads of illegal recruiters

Be mindful of advertisements that would ask you to pay immediately.  One of their tactics is to tell you that it is a first come-first serve basis.  Be mindful if you immediately hear or see that they are asking for the following:

  • Air fares
  • Intended Visa
  • Processing Cost

Always remember that real agencies would not ask you for payments unless you have a sure job offer or employment.

Read: How to Check Illegal Recruitment Agency using POEA website

Working Visa

Of course, before anything else, you need to ensure that you have the correct work visa/permit before you try and get job offers.  Illegal recruiters would sometimes tell you that tourist/visit visa is already fine.

You might say that these tips are basic.  As a matter of fact, they are basic and they are often the ones forgotten by many.  If you want to ensure a safe and a successful application, be mindful of all the things listed here.

One last tip: make sure that you transact directly with government offices and personnel.  Avoid fixers especially in these types of situations.  Why?  Because these can cause delays, additional fees, and troubles in your application.  And we do not want that to happen, right?

Come clean, be safe, and good luck in your job hunting.

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