An overseas Filipino worker or OFW is ready to work abroad if he or she had meet all the requirements needed, passed the medical exam, aced the employer’s interview, and asked to sign a detailed employment contract.
To protect the rights of OFWs, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration or POEA set minimum provisions for OFW’s standard employment contract. This piece of document governs the terms and conditions of the worker’s overseas employment.
Here are some reminders about the employment contract of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs):
Read and understand everything written in the contract before signing it.The time you will devote in reviewing your employment contract is surely a time well-spent. Take note that there may be employment contracts written in a foreign language but you have every right to request for a translated version.
The minimum provisions in the standard employment contract are the following:
• Statement of worksite or place of work
• Contract duration
• Position Title
• Monthly salary rate in accordance with the prescribed standards or guiding rates
• Regular work schedule of eight (8) hours per day for not more than six (6) days per week
• Overtime pay for service beyond regular working hours
• Free transportation to and from the worksite, or offsetting benefits
• Free food and accommodation, or offsetting benefits
• Benefits which include Vacation Leave, Sick Leave, Medical and Dental, and Workmen’s Compensation in cases of work related sickness, injury or death
• In the event of death of the employee, worker’s remains and personal belongings shall be repatriated to the Philippines at the expense of the Employer
• Just causes for termination
Keep a copy to yourself and your family.Ask for a copy of the employment contract you signed and keep it in a safe place. Remember to leave a copy of your overseas employment documents before your departure. In cases when you would need to file a complaint to your employer, you can always refer to what is written in your contract to back up your complaint.
Be aware of employment contract scam.There is such a thing as employment contract substitution wherein the worker would be asked to sign a different employment contract containing different benefits and conditions compared to what is stated in the previous contract you signed.
There are cases when the worker would be obliged to sign a new contract before boarding a plane or upon arrival in the workplace.
Check your rights and benefits.The terms in the employment contract are based on a number of factors such as the labor laws of the host country or if there is any agreement or partnership between the Philippines and the host country.
However, regardless of the conditions, the monthly wage should not be below the allowed minimum amount set by the law. This entitles the worker to basic privileges of a hired worker such as rest days, health benefits, etc.
For any irregularities or complaints regarding your employment contract, you can contact the Philippine Embassy or Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) nearest your area.
Be guided and learn more about the overseas employment by taking the Pre-Employment Orientation Seminar (PEOS) Online. Doing so will also give you access to the latest overseas job opportunities at WorkAbroad.ph where hundreds of POEA-licensed agencies post their manpower needs.