Foreigners Applying for Work Permits Now Required to Present Their Tax Identification Number
The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), together with the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Bureau of Immigration (BI), signed on Labor Day on Wednesday joint guidelines to “harmonize” inter-agency policies on the issuance of Work and Employment Permits to foreign nationals seeking employment in the Philippines.
The joint guidelines requires foreign nationals to present their Tax Identification Number (TIN) from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) as a pre-application requirement when applying for work permits from DOLE. The TIN shall apply as a mandatory requirement for the following work permits:
- Alien Employment Permits (AEP)
- Special Work Permits (SWP)
- Provisional Work Permits (PWP)
Special Temporary Permits (STP) are exempted from the requirement, since they are exclusively issued by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and are subject to the agency’s separate requirements.
The TIN requirement under the joint guidelines is part of DOLE, DOJ, and BI’s inter-agency efforts to ensure that foreign workers in the country will properly pay their taxes to the government.
“The Department of Labor [and Employment] requires a foreigner to submit their tax identification number [before they are issued a work permit] to ensure they are properly paying their taxes,” DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said in a press conference after the signing of the joint guidelines on Labor Day, May 1.
Foreigners seeking for long-term employment in the Philippines are required to secure an AEP from DOLE, which is initially valid for one to five years depending on the duration of the employment contract, renewable for a maximum period of another five years. An AEP is required for those who want to apply for a work visa.
According to Dominique Tutay, Director of the Bureau of Local Employment, in a chance interview, “The AEP is also the basis for the Bureau of Immigration to issue the work visa and [the work visa’s validity] is also dependent on the validity of the [AEP] that was issued.”