Guide for OFWs: How to Get NBI Clearance Even When You’re Abroad

Even if you are working abroad and won’t be able to go home in the next months or so, you can still get your clearance from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). The NBI clearance is an important document that is necessary for certain transactions in the Philippines, such as seeking approval or clearance for a job application or travel abroad.

Valid for 1 year, the NBI clearance can still be processed even if you are out of the country. This is a handy guide for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who are unable to go home to process the clearance due to their contract.

Photo credit: NBI Clearance

Follow these steps to secure an NBI clearance.

Step 1. Go to the consular office or Philippine Embassy in the country you are working in. Secure an NBI Clearance application form (NBI Form No. 5).

Step 2. Fill out the form and make sure to affix your signatures properly on the form.

Step 3. Attach your latest 2×2 ID picture with white background. Write your name and signature at the back of the photo.

Step 4. Add a photocopy of your Philippine passport and valid government-issued IDs.

Step 5. Create an authorization letter for your authorized representative in the Philippines. Make sure to affix your signature in the letter.

Step 6. Send the filled-out application form, photo, photocopies of passport and IDs, and authorization letter to your authorized representative.

Photo credit: NBI clearance website

Step 7. Go to the NBI clearance website ( and fill in the blanks with your details to register your account.

Step 8. Choose the NBI Clearance Center in United Nations Ave., Ermita, Manila. Tell your representative that this is the only NBI center that accepts authorized representatives.

Step 9. After passing your application, make sure to note your reference number. The NBI will use this to retrieve your application and data.

Step 10. Pay the NBI clearance fee. You can choose to pay this through Bayad Center or other payment options such as

Step 11. Once your NBI clearance is available, your authorized representative can claim it for you from the NBI office in Ermita.

Step 12. Have your authorized representative mail your NBI clearance to you or use it for whatever purpose you got it for.

Take note that the NBI clearance usually takes about 5 days to process, but give an allowance of 1 month for the whole process.