LAST UPDATED: December 2020
This is a short guide on how to get the Guidance and Counseling Certificate and the Emigrant Registration sticker (applicable only when you’re moving to your partner’s country) from the CFO. The very first thing to do is to make an online appointment. I currently reside in Cebu, hence I chose to attend the GCP in CFO-Cebu.
4th Floor, K&J BLDG., #4 Don Julio Llorente St., Capitol Site, Cebu City, Philippines
Telefax: (032) 255-5253; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Landmark: The Palladium Suites (K&J Building is right next to this hotel.)
Once you successfully made the appointment, gather these basic requirements. Don’t forget to print your online appointment form and take it with you on the day of your CFO visit.
I was asked to give 3 valid ID cards instead of 2. Perhaps due to the absence of my passport. I intentionally didn’t bring it. I’m still waiting for my husband’s Certificate of Eligibility so I only did requirements 1 to 5. (above) If you already have your visa, you might as well prepare all those documents listed above and below.
This is what happened on the day of my appointment. You might get some ideas on what you’ll be doing there.
1. I got there around 6AM (Not a good idea! LOL) since the registration starts at 8AM. I advise you to be there 30 minutes before 8. Everyone was allowed to wait downstairs.
2. At exactly 8, we were called upstairs to queue and have our basic requirements checked. I handed in a copy of my husband’s passport accordingly. After the checking, I was told to be seated and wait for my name to be called.
3. As soon as I was called, I got up and headed towards the window where the lady who called me was at. She asked me whether to use my maiden name or adopt my husband’s surname. I explained that my passport is expiring in 5 years so I steadfastly stated my preference.
4. She then gave me the guidance and counseling form and asked me to fill it out. It didn’t take me long to finish it. I came prepared.
5. Went back to the same window and submitted the duly completed form. Then, I paid for the counseling fee (PHP400.00). I was told to keep the official receipt and prepare the supporting documents (referring to the other documents as may be required by the counselors) and come back at 1PM.
GUIDANCE & COUNSELING SESSION
- I got back there around 11AM (Not again! LOL). It’ll be good if you go back there at 12:30PM to avoid waiting that long downstairs.
- At exactly 12:30PM, we were allowed to go upstairs and instructed to get inside PDOS Room 1. All of us regardless of the destination were gathered in that room. A video was played 15 minutes before 1PM, I think.
- After the film viewing, we were divided. My husband’s country of citizenship is South Korea, ergo I was told to attend the GC with the other Filipinos with Korean partners even though my destination is Japan. Surprisingly, there were only 3 of us in PDOS Room 2.
- The session was divided into 3 parts.
Part 1: Overview of CFO
Part 2: Things to know about Intermarriage and how to keep your marriage
Part 3: One-on-one Interview (This is when your counselor requires you to give the other documents. They vary from case to case. So, I advise you to be equipped with the relevant documents, e.g. copies of your spouse’s latest arrival stamp, divorce decree if he/she is divorced, and the like.)
Since my better half was single before our marriage and has no children from previous relationships, the following were the things I was asked to submit:
- Photocopy of his passport
- Photocopy of his Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage
- Our photos together (I provided 7 but she took only 2 pictures.)
- Photocopy of his permanent (Japan) residence card (This allows them to decide if I need to join the 2-day Korean Cultural Orientation seminar or not. Unfortunately, I only brought his copy of long term residence card for the reason that his application for permanent residency got approved just last week. I lacked this one.)
If you’re moving to Korea, you are obliged to attend another 2-day seminar before acquiring the Certificate of Attendance.
- After that interview, everybody could go home with or without the certificate and sticker depending on the case. Further instructions will be given by the assigned counselors.
As for me, I left the building with nothing in hand. It didn’t sadden me, though. Fortunately, I didn’t have any unpleasant experience. I was just asked to go back there by the time I get hold of my husband’s copy of PR card, COE, and my visa.
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