As mentioned in our earlier posts, we came here in New Zealand with a work visa. After settling here for a few months, we realized that we want to stay here longer and decided to apply for Resident Visa. One of the requirements for resident visa application is Police Certificate. In the Philippines, this is issued by National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). Immigration New Zealand (INZ) requires police certificates to be less than 6 months old at the time application was lodged. Unfortunately, my NBI clearance is already 9 months old, so even if it is not expired (NBI clearance expires after a yar) I still have to get a new one. Here’s a guide on how to apply for NBI Clearance if you are in New Zealand. The procedures are similar if you are getting NBI Clearance anywhere overseas.
Step 1: Secure NBI Fingerprint Form Card (NBI Form No. 5) from the PH embassy/consulate by sending the following:
- A request letter with signature
- Photocopy of valid passport
- Self-addressed prepaid courier bag – You can buy the bag from NZ Post. You need to include this bag in your mail so they can send back the form to you.
Here is the address of Philippine Embassy in Wellington.
50 Hobson Street, Thorndon
Wellington, New Zealand 6011
When you receive the form, below is what it looks like. It should have the unique serial number on the upper right corner and embassy seal on the bottom right corner of the form.
Step 2. Fill out the NBI Fingerprint Card on both sides;
Step 3. Have your fingerprints impressed rolled impression on the appropriate space in the form. Bring your form and a 2″x 2″ photo (white background taken within three months) with you, and go to the nearest police station or embassy/consulate to assist you in capturing your fingerprints. Note that in Auckland area, fingerprint capture is now being pushed to be electronic thru NZ Post which means you have no choice but to ask help from PH consulate in Auckland to assist you with fingerprinting. Anyway, I still recommend you to go to the consulate/embassy to prevent wrong or incomplete impression/signature. The witness (police or embassy/consulate officer) should sign his/her name and state his official designation in the space for “IMPRESSIONS TAKEN BY”.
Notes for married woman application: Name should be written in the following order
- a) Your maiden name (family or surname of your father);
- b) Your first name or given name;
- c) Your maternal surname (maiden surname of your mother); and
- d) Your husband’s surname or family name ( space provided, No. 2);
Step 4: Send the accomplished form and payment to NBI. You have two options – you can either
- Send the accomplished form and payment to your representative, and have him/her process the NBI for you. Your representative will submit the requirements to NBI and then pick up your NBI Clearance once available. You need to provide an authorization letter to your representative. or
- Send the form and payment directly to NBI. Once available, they will send the clearance to your address abroad. The catch is they will send it via regular snail mail without a tracking number. 🙁
Below is the contact information of NBI for overseas applicants
- MS. SANDRA P. SOBIDA
Mailed Clearance Section
NBI Taft Ave., Ermita, Manila
Tel Number 5238231 loc 5465
Cost of application is 200 pesos.
In my case, I asked my brother to process our NBI Clearance. He paid 200 pesos in cash for each clearance.
Step 5: Wait for your NBI Clearance result. If you have a representative, he/she will pick up your clearance and send it back to you via your preferred courier. My brother got my clearance after 5 days. It took another 5 days for my clearance to be sent here in Auckland. It will definitely take more time if you let NBI send your clearance to you via regular mail, and again they don’t provide a tracking number which will make you go crazy if you’ve been waiting for so long.
Please note that if you are living near the embassy/consulate, you can go straight to the embassy/consulate with your passport to obtain NBI Clearance Form and have your fingerprints taken (Steps 1 to 3).
Double check for any wrong info on the clearance. Check for the dry seal. Ensure that the signatures are complete.
Challenge Encountered – A note to DOST Scholars
I was a scholar of Department of Science and Technology (DOST) when I was in college. Part of my obligation to serve my country is to work in the Philippines for the same duration I was under the scholarship. My name was in the PH immigration and NBI watch list, which simply means I cannot live or work abroad without completing my service obligation.
Before applying for NZ work visa, I already had this worked out: I completed my service obligation and was cleared by DOST. To do this, I submitted a copy of a letter from DOST to NBI stating that I am already cleared of my obligation. I was granted an NBI clearance with no derogatory records.
Considering this, I was surprised when my brother had issues with my clearance as the officer told him that I actually still need to settle my DOST obligation again. My brother even submitted my NBI clearance along with the application. So what he did was he went back the next day and brought a copy of my DOST service clearance and another copy of my old NBI clearance. Luckily, I have saved copies or I will have to get a new one (DOST clearance)!
For me this is really a disappointment on the NBI process and a flaw on the integrity of their records.
So if you have any clearance/documents/letters that you think might affect the release of your NBI Clearance in the future, better keep them, you might need them in the future.
Note: Notice the dry seal embossed on the left side of the clearance just above the bar code which can slightly be seen in the photo.