What is the change? Foreign employees holding Commercial visas who are promoted within the same company will not have to downgrade to Tourist visas or apply for new Commercial visas.

What does the change mean? The exemption somewhat simplifies procedures for employers who promote foreign employees holding 9(g) Commercial visas.

  • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: 9(g) Commercial visas.
  • Who is affected:Foreign employees promoted in the same company.
  • Impact on processing times: The change eliminates a step for certain expatriate workers and reduces overall processing time for them by approximately two weeks.
  • Business impact: Businesses may promote foreign staff without spending additional time and expense converting visas or reapplying for new visas for those employees.

Background: The Bureau of Immigration adopted the change under Board Resolution No. EED-15-01. Under the new procedures, foreign employees who are promoted to a higher position in the same company may apply for a new Alien Employment Permit for the new position, extend the 9(g) visa, and then submit a certified copy of the new AEP to the Bureau of Immigration.

BAL Analysis: The processing time required for the new steps is still eight to 10 weeks or more. Therefore, typically it is still more efficient for a foreign national’s promotion to coincide with the renewal of his or her 9(g) visa. However, the elimination of the visa downgrade step saves a bit of time when circumstances require a company to award a promotion earlier.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in the Philippines. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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