OFWs based in Kuwait should know that an OWWA membership means more than just a requirement for work overseas. OWWA is the governing body responsible for overseeing the work conditions and welfare of Filipinos abroad.
With this in mind, you can have some sense of security in the fact that the agency has got you covered in several situations you might encounter while working abroad up until you decide to return home to the Philippines. That said, it’s crucial that you keep your membership status even as you are based overseas to enjoy the various insurance coverage and social benefits which this agency offers.
Guide to Renewing OWWA Membership for OFWs in Kuwait
As you may have experienced, you were told to register for an OWWA membership as one of the requirements before going abroad. Even if you didn’t know exactly what you can get from being an active OWWA member back then, you have already been registered in the department’s database, and will only need to renew after your membership lapses in two years’ time – or right about the time you need to renew your standard employment contract to continue working abroad.
With this in mind, you need to know the steps on how to renew your OWWA membership even as you’re working abroad, such as here in Kuwait. In this post, we detail the things you need to know about renewing your OWWA membership here in Kuwait.
Just to give you an overview, there are several benefits and programs you can avail yourself of from OWWA. These include:
- Disability and Dismemberment Benefit – up to Php 100,000 for accident-related injuries
- Death and Burial Benefits – Php 100,000 (natural cause) and Php 200,000 (accidental cause). On top of the death benefit, there will be a Php 20,000 rider benefit to be given to the beneficiaries for the funeral expenses.
- Supplemental Medical Assistance for OFWs (MEDPlus) – this amount is provided to OFWs in need of additional financial support for their medical treatment. This provides coverage for treatments or surgeries for dreaded diseases. The total amount of such coverage should not exceed Php 50,000.
- Welfare Assistance Programs (WAP) – this provides assistance to active or non-active OWWA members or their families not eligible under any of the existing OWWA Social Benefit Programs and Services.
- Calamity Assistance – can be availed of by OWWA members and their families affected by natural or human-induced calamities or disasters.
- Bereavement Assistance – can be availed of by families with deceased OWWA-OFW members
- Medical Assistance – this applies to OWWA members with illnesses that are not covered under MEDPlus as well as those who sustained injuries during accidents/crimes.
- Relief Assistance – this is offered to those who have been displaced or laid off en masse as a result of economic/political/health situations.
What are the Requirements for OWWA Membership Renewal in POLO-OWWA Kuwait?
Listed below are all the requirements for membership renewal at the PH Embassy POLO-OWWA:
- OFW Information Sheet Membership Form
- Your original passport
- Certificate of Employment/ Contract Verification (2 copies)
- The OFW must also provide a certificate from the company/employer to prove that they are not on the list of employees due for termination/cancelled contract/resigned.
- POLO-verified contract
- Membership fee
Step-by-Step Guide in Renewing OWWA Membership in Kuwait
Here’s a step-by-step guide to renewing OWWA membership in Kuwait. With all of the requirements on hand, you can follow the procedures outlined below without booking for an appointment at POLO-OWWA (as of this writing):
Step 1: Get a membership renewal form at the OWWA Kuwait Office.
Step 2: Request a Certificate of Employment / Contract Verification from your employer with their signature on the document.
Step 3: With all of the above-listed requirements, wait for your turn (if there’s a queue) to proceed at the payment window.
Step 4: Pay the fee for the Certificate of Employment/Contract Verification Fee worth 3.25 KD (11 USD)
Step 5: After payment, the teller will direct you to proceed to the OWWA window (located next to the Certificate of Employment/Contract Verification window).
Step 6: Pay the OWWA Membership fee worth 8.93 KD (30 USD).
Step 7: After payment of all the necessary fees, you will be given a receipt for your OWWA Membership renewal.
Note: As of the time being, there is still no instruction to adopt an online booking system for OWWA membership renewal at the PH Embassy in Kuwait. That said, prepare to wait in a queue, especially when you come in a bit later in the morning. The line starts at around 6 am and peak hours in the morning is from 9 am to 10 am – the embassy is open only from 7 am to 12:30 pm. So, the earlier you come, the sooner you’ll complete your transaction.
It may also be likely that an appointment system may be adopted eventually so do keep posted by following the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait’s Facebook page for the latest updates and procedural changes applied.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT OWWA MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL IN KUWAIT
- How much is the OWWA Membership Renewal fee?
As mentioned, the OWWA membership fee costs 8.93 KD (Php 1,492). This amount provides you with a two-year validity period for your OWWA membership, allowing you to maximize the agency’s benefits during this period.
- Are there any other fees that I can settle at the Philippine embassy?
Other than the OWWA fees, you can also settle other government dues at the agency. This includes paying your SSS contributions yourself. You can make a one-time payment that is good for three months worth 22 KD (Php 3,677). Moreover, paying for your Pag-IBIG voluntary contributions is also possible, which amounts to 20 KD (Php 3,342) for three months.
- Am I allowed to renew my OWWA membership during my free time or days off?
As of the moment, the Philippine Embassy does not enforce a booking appointment policy for OFWs in the country. So this makes it more convenient for those who have an irregular days off or have limited free time in the week. However, with the surge in COVID cases in most parts of the world, it’s not unlikely for the embassy to transition to a no appointment no entry policy to limit the number of clients going into the facility.
VIDEO: OWWA Payment and Renewal at PH Embassy in Kuwait
Here’s a video of an OFW in Kuwait sharing her experience in renewing her OWWA membership at the Philippine Embassy. In this video, she talks about the requirements, process, fees, reminders, and shares some trivia about the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait.
Office Hours: 7am to 2 pm (Sundays to Thursdays)
Temporary Address: Building 133, Street 304, Blk 3, Sabah Al-Salem Area, Kuwait
Other Address: Abdullah Al Hamad Hashimi St Kuwait (this is where you should go for the processing and verification of your contract, vaccination certificate validation, OWWA membership renewal, and Pag-IBIG Fund and SSS member application)
Telephone Number: +965 9403 9063
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Google Map Location:
There you have it! Becoming an OWWA member has several perks that you can enjoy as well as your family. With this in mind, make sure that your membership status is active, otherwise, you might not get to maximize the full benefits offered by OWWA to OFW-members. With this guide on hand, we hope that you’ll have all the essential information to help you complete this process as hassle-free as possible.
While the process is quite straightforward, there might be some changes and minor adjustments in terms of the embassy’s manner of delivering services at this point because of the ongoing pandemic, which has affected many countries including Kuwait and the Philippines. For safe measure, it would be best for you to follow the embassy’s Facebook page to stay updated for any changes in the processes or services they offer on certain days or whatnot.
Also, by getting notified of these changes, you can better plan your next course of action, which obviously, will require the approval or consent of your sponsor. This way, you can ensure a hassle-free and pleasant experience of working here in Kuwait.
OWWA, in collaboration with its partner agencies in DOLE and Philhealth, has come up with several programs in the form of financial assistance, loans, scholarship grants and even training. You just need to be familiar with these and find one that could benefit you the most in your present circumstances. And the first step in doing so is maintaining an active member status by following the steps and information presented in this guide. If you have other questions or clarifications regarding this process, you can leave us a message in the comment section below or address your concern directly to the Philippine Embassy in Kuwait POLO-OWWA through this email: firstname.lastname@example.org. And if this guide has helped you in your OWWA membership renewal in Kuwait, then make sure to share this post with your friends and family, too!