Travel Guide

COE as a Visa Requirement

Having a full-time job has its perks. I never had any problem complying with employment-related visa requirements because you can simply request HR your Certificate of Employment (COE) and give them a few instructions on what details are required that should reflect in your COE. Details on your employment and specific company information vary per embassy. Therefore, make sure to consider that as well before requesting. This document is valid within three months only from the date indicated, so if you have one which isn’t expired yet, you can still submit it to the embassy.

In rare cases, you might experience difficulty in requesting COE or takes ages before release, despite the fact that you are still employed. Here are the facts I gathered, which can help you understand things and eventually build your confidence to demand what is right.

I have a friend, an HR professional, who I seek advice in terms of these things. She forwarded a Facebook post from Labor Law Made Easy, which helped me understand everything about COE.

Also, according to the Labor Advisory No. 06 series of 2020, the employer shall issue a certificate of employment within three (3) days from the time of the request by the employee.

I actually had a case where my former employer (a decade ago) asked me if I already submitted my clearance documents when I only ask for COE and not the final pay. My former employer totally ignored the email request dated October 6 after that conversation over the phone. After learning about this law, I made an email follow-up on November 17 at around 2:25 am, but this time I copy-pasted the post from Labor Law Made Easy and added the Labor Advisory No. 6. To my surprise, they replied back to my email with an attached COE on the same day at around 6:43 pm. Hence, I am writing this blog fresh from my experience, which I believe can help people out there who have the same scenario.

So yes, requesting COE should be as easy as 1, 2, 3. I am not a labor law expert whatsoever, but this is something essential that we should all be aware of as travelers with a full-time job.

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