Foreign nationals in the Philippines are required by the law to get an Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) issued by the Bureau of Immigration (BI) before leaving the country. It is also called as Exit Clearance that is given upon request prior to departure as a proof that the foreigner has no pending obligations or derogatory records in the government.
If you are a foreigner in the Philippines and you want to go back to your home country, this is a very essential document that needs to be acquired since without it, you won’t be able to leave. According to the press release on 2015, 33% of foreign national travelers were denied departure because of not having an Emigration Clearance Certificate.
There are two (2) types of Emigration Clearance Certificate, the ECC-A and ECC-B.
What is ECC-A?
The ECC-A is referred to the “regular” Emigration Certificate Clearance. The following foreigners are required to get ECC-A:
- Temporary Visitor Visa, also known as Tourist Visa, holders who have stayed for over six (6) months in the Philippines
- Tourist Visa holders with orders to leave
- Expired or downgraded Immigrant or Non-Immigrant Visa holders
- Valid Immigrant or Non-Immigrant Visa holders who are leaving the Philippines for good
- Philippine-born foreign nationals who is about to depart from the Philippines for the first time
- Bona fide seafarers who have stayed in the Philippines for 30 days or more and has a duly approved discharge from Bureau of Immigration
What is ECC-B?
The ECC-B is the second type of Exit Clearance given upon request to the departing Immigrant or Non-Immigrant Visa holders with valid ARC I-Cards who are leaving the Philippines temporarily.
When to Get Emigration Clearance Certificate
The Bureau of Immigration recommends foreign nationals to process ECC three (3) days prior to the departure date. This way, if you have additional documents required or something needs to be done, you have at least 72 hours to process it.
Downloadable Application Form
This is the downloadable application form from the Bureau of Immigration Website ECC Application Form
Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) Fee
The charge fee for ECC Clearance is around ₱1,210 – ₱3,000.
The Emigration Certificate Clearance is valid only for 30 days from the issued date and it can only be used once.
Where to Process ECC Clearance
For foreign nationals who needs to apply for ECC-A (review above for who can apply), the application needs to be processed at the Bureau of Immigration Office. For foreigners who needs to get ECC-B, it can be processed at the airport.
Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) Requirements
These are the following requirements upon the application of ECC:
- Application Form
- 6 pieces of 2×2 ID picture
- Photocopy of Passport (bio page, visa page, and latest arrival)
- Photocopy of receipt of latest visa extension
- Original and Photocopy of ACR I-Card
- Photocopy of order of downgrading (*if applicable)
How to Get Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) or Exit Clearance in the Philippines
- Go to the nearest Bureau of Immigration Office in your area and bring your requirements.
- Fill-out the application form and submit it along with the requirements. (the form is downloadable online)
- Wait for it to be checked and get your Order of Payment Slip (OPS).
- Pay the corresponding fees.
- Submit your application form, requirements and original receipt/s and wait for your claim stub.
- On the scheduled date and time of return, present your claim stub to get your Emigration Clearance Certificate and Receipt/s.
- You’ll be asked to sign the duplicate copy of the ECC before the releasing of original Emigration Clearance Certificate and Official Receipt.