By: Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines, Seoul

The Philippine Embassy in Seoul wishes to inform the Filipino public that the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) of Korea will implement a voluntary departure acceleration program for foreign overstayers. The program will start on 10 July 2017 and tentatively end on 10 October 2017.

Under this voluntary departure acceleration program, foreign overstayers who overstayed in the country for less than 5 years will be exempted from re-entry ban. For those who stayed in the country for more than 5 years, the re-entry ban will be shortened to 1 year.

However, those who entered the country using a forged passport, as well as illegal entrants and persons with criminal record(s), are not eligible to join the program.

Further, for foreign overstayers who overstayed and are caught and deported by the Korean Immigration, the re-entry ban of 5 years is imposed regardless of the period of overstay.

Persons who wish to avail of the program would have to visit an immigration office located in his/her departure port on his/her exit date in order to declare his/her voluntary departure. Valid passport (or travel document) and booked flight ticket should be presented. No fee will be charged for the departure declaration.

The Philippine Embassy urges undocumented Filipinos in South Korea to avail of the voluntary departure acceleration program as MOJ, through the Korean Immigration Service, plans to carry out stricter crackdown on illegal immigrants in the future. Control on migration brokers who facilitate the illegal entry and employment of foreign nationals will be stricter as well.

For more information on the voluntary departure acceleration program of the Ministry of Justice, refer to https://www.gov.kr/portal/ntnadmNews/1130250.