POEA cancels recruitment agency’s license for deceiving and exacting placement fees

By on May 12, 2015

Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA)
Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA)

MANILA — A local recruitment agency is no longer allowed to recruit workers to work overseas after the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) cancelled its license for misrepresentation and collection of placement fees.

Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said the license of Valentino Promotion Recruitment International Agency, Inc. has been cancelled for violation of POEA Governing Board Resolution No. 6, Series of 2006, which prohibits recruitment agencies from collecting such placement fees.

“The mere fact of charging or asking for placement fees warrants the penalty of license cancellation on the part of the recruitment agency,” he said in a statement.

Cacdac noted that in the case of illegal fees exaction, the complainant against Valentino Promotion alleged that a staff member of the agency promised her employment as a household service worker in Singapore with a salary of 600 Singapore dollars.

She signed the contract, and was charged an amount equivalent to 8 months of her salary as placement fee, to be paid through salary deduction.

The complainant worked in Singapore for 15 months, but with a salary of no more than USD 400 a month.

“With an exchange rate of Php43.00 to a US dollar at the time of her deployment, the worker would have paid Php17,2000 per month or Php138,000 in 8 months, which violates both Philippine and Singaporean laws on recruitment and employment,” said Cacdac, adding that household service or domestic workers should not be charged any placement fees.

In the case on deception or misrepresentation, the agency initiated against Valentino Promotion, the POEA chief said the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Abu Dhabi, UAE endorsed the case of a domestic worker who took shelter at the OFW Centre, ten (10) days after arriving in the said country.

In her sworn statement, the worker claimed that she signed an employment contract indicating a monthly salary of USD 400.

Upon arrival in Abu Dhabi, however, her employer disclosed that she would only be receiving 800 dirhams as salary per month. The employer sent her back to Emirates Falcon Manpower Services, Valentino’s counterpart agency in Abu Dhabi, when she refused to accept the job.The agency owner wanted her to reimburse the expenses incurred in her recruitment, and threatened to detain her if she would not pay.

He noted that misrepresentation was established when Valentino Promotion submitted for POEA processing the employment contract of the complainant indicating a salary of USD 400, only to be reduced to USD 200 or 800 dirhams at the jobsite.

“Obviously, the recruitment agency committed such misrepresentation to facilitate the processing of the documents of the worker at the POEA with dispatch. She would not have been allowed to be deployed unless the stipulations in the contract of the worker complied with the provisions of the POEA rules on the deployment of household service workers,” Cacdac said.