The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) provides assistance to OFWs who have been partially or permanently injured while in their work contract through the Disability and Dismemberment Benefit. This is a specially designed program in the form of cash aid amounting to a maximum of PhP 100,000 which active OWWA OFW members can avail of.
That way, OFWs will still have enough funds to hopefully cover any medical or maintenance costs, save up for recovery, or process their return to the country.
Having to work overseas is so much a sacrifice that many Filipinos are willing to take already, but knowing the risks in their job abroad and still choosing to pursue it is on another level, all for the chance to provide a better future for their families.
We’ve encountered so many stories of struggle and misfortune from OFWs in which they’ve been badly injured while working, and instead of receiving help from their employers or other contacts, they’ve been permanently barred from continuing their work, leaving them lost and jobless. However, for OWWA, no Filipino, even injured, is left behind.
Should you or your OFW relative need such assistance, let this article walk you through the application process.
The OWWA disability benefit is given to OFWs who are working on an OWWA contract but have been injured or suffered from disease while working in a foreign country.
In order to be qualified for this benefit, you must have been employed with OWWA when the sickness or accident occurred.
Beneficiaries of the program are entitled to a cash assistance ranging from PhP 2,500 to PhP 25,000 for partial, temporary injuries and PhP 50,000 to PhP 100,000 for permanent injuries while in contract, upon approval of their application.
To qualify for the benefits program, an applicant must meet the following specifications:
- Active land- or sea-based OWWA OFW member
- Must have a partial injury, meaning any type of disability which may hinder the applicant/OFW from full performance of duty (i.e: loss of sense/s, nerve/bone damage, PTSD, etc) or a permanent injury which will hinder their continuation of employment (i.e: amputation, organ damage, etc.). The injury must have been gained from an accident.
Qualified applicants may apply for the benefit program upon completion of the following documents:
- OWWA OFW membership record
- One (1) copy of 1×1 ID photo
- Medical certificate issued by a duly-authorized medical institution or healthcare facility in country of employment, translated into English, and;
- Medical certificate and any of the following to certify examination process issued by an attending physician in the Philippines:
- X-ray or MRI scan
- CT scan
- Other medical record
- For seafarers:
- Seaman’s Identification Record Book
- Accident Report or Master’s Report
- For authorized representatives and/or qualified dependents of the OFW:
- One (1) valid ID, and;
- Authorization letter duly signed by the OFW
How to Process OWWA Disability and Dismemberment Application
Applicants with complete documentary requirements may proceed with their application by following these steps:
- Go to your designated OWWA Regional or Satellite Office, for local applicants, or the POLO OWWA office in your country of employment, for applicants abroad.
- Accomplish the necessary documentary specifications.
- Submit your requirements along with supporting documents.
- Wait for an authorized OWWA representative to correspond to you regarding your application.
- This program is designated for active OWWA OFW members only. Inactive members who wish to avail of the benefit program are required to renew their membership prior to their application.
- This program shall only provide for OFWs who have gained their injury within the duration of their employment contract.
- Accepted beneficiaries of the program will receive the assistance via bank transfer or e-payment facility within two (2) weeks upon approval of application. Therefore, it is highly recommended that they have an active bank account in their name.
Video: OWWA Disability Social Benefits
Check out this video below which features a snippet about the OWWA disability program. This is part of the social benefits of OWWA for OFWs and you can get an idea how you can process your application for disability program below:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Please check out these questions about the disability and dismemberment program of OWWA below:
1. Who are qualified to avail of the benefit program?
OFWs who have incurred a partial or permanent injury within their contract and are active OWWA members are qualified to avail of the benefit program. For dependents who wish to apply on behalf of their OFW relatives may apply as their authorized representatives, as long as they bring proof of identity and a letter of authorization duly signed by the OFW member relative.
2. How much is the assistance for this program?
Qualified beneficiaries of the program will receive a cash aid amounting from PhP 2,500 to PhP 25,000 if they have incurred a partial or temporary injury while at work, or from PhP 50,000 to PhP 100,000 if they have incurred a permanent injury.
3. Can I only apply for one OFW member?
Yes, OFW applicants can only apply for themselves, and authorized representatives can only apply for one (1) OFW contact.
4. Am I guaranteed of the assistance upon submission of my application?
No, applying for the program does not guarantee you of the assistance, due to the program’s limited budget as well as the influx of all applications which will be subject to review and assessment by OWWA and concerned agencies.
5. How will I know if I am accepted as a program beneficiary?
Applicants may track the status of their application through a reference number which they will receive upon application. Accepted applicants will then be notified via call, text or email from an authorized DOLE or OWWA representative.
True enough, working abroad is a big step as much as an opportunity for many Filipinos nowadays, and while this chapter of life is not all sunshine and rainbows, they can always count on their fellow Filipinos through OWWA for a helping hand especially in times of accidents.
The disability and dismemberment benefit is only one of the many benefits of being an active OWWA OFW member, so make sure to keep your membership status active to avail of such benefits and make the most of your OFW experience.
For more information on this benefit program or other OWWA benefits, you may visit their website at www.owwa.gov.ph or their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OWWAofficial. You may also opt to download the OWWA Mobile App to update your membership and stay connected with the OWWA community.