Immigrant Visa (Non-quota or quota)
An immigrant is a foreigner who wishes to stay in the Philippines permanently without renouncing his or her citizenship. A foreigner may achieve immigrant status if his or her country has a reciprocal agreement allowing Filipinos to become immigrants. However, the Philippines has an immigrant quota of 50 people of any one nationality per calender year.
You may qualify as a non-quota immigrant under the following conditions:
- Marriage - For foreign spouses or unmarried children under 21 years of age of Filipino nationals if accompanying them to the Philippines or joining them there.
- Returning resident - Those foreigners who were granted a permanent visa and are returning from a trip abroad.
- Returning former Philippine citizen - A natural born Filipino who has citizenship from another country.
- Balikbayan status - Former Philippine citizens who are visiting the Philippines (balikbayans need to bring proof of previous Philippine citizenship if they have renounced it). This is valid for one year and applicants must then pay monthly extension fees. The one year visa-free stay extends to the spouse and minor children provided they travel with the balikbayan.
If you do not qualify under any of the conditions as a non-quota immigrant then you must apply for a quota immigrant visa.
How to apply for an immigrant visa
The supporting documentation required depends on the type of visa and which sub-type you’re applying for. You will need to provide the following regardless of the type:
- A passport with more than 6 months left on it
- Passport-sized photographs
- A visa fee
- The correct and completed application forms
- Birth and marriage certificates of any spouse or children accompanying you
If you are applying for a quota visa you will need to attend a personal interview with the immigration service and provide documentation proving you can support yourself financially.