Returning residents, OFWs now allowed to bring in personal, household effects worth PHP350K — BOC

MANILA — Returning residents and overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will be allowed to bring in personal and household effects amounting to PHP350,000.00 starting on Tuesday, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) said.

This as Customs Administrative Order (CAO) No. 06-2016, which covers the provisions of Republic Act No. 10863 (or the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act) on conditionally tax and/or duty–exempt importation of such items imported by returning Filipinos, will take effect on January 24.

The qualified individuals are Filipino nationals, including their spouse and dependent children, who has stayed abroad for a period of at least 6 months and is returning to the Philippines while the returning OFWs are those holder of a valid passport issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and certified by Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) or Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) for overseas employment purposes. This covers all Filipinos working in a foreign country under employment contracts, regardless of their professions, skills or employment status.

“To avail of this privilege, the personal and household goods must accompany the Returning Residents or Returning OFWs upon their return from abroad or must arrive within a reasonable time, which shall not exceed 60 days after the owner’s return,” the BOC said in a statement.

The bureau noted that the items that are allowed to bring in are:

“Personal and Household Effects”, such as wearing apparel, personal adornments, electronic gadgets, toiletries, or similar items; furniture, dishes, linens, libraries, and similar household furnishing for personal use; and instruments related to one’s profession and analogous personal or household effects whether new or used, that are for personal use or consumption and not for commercial purposes, not intended for barter, sale or hire;

“Durables” such as household appliances, machinery, or sports equipment that may be used repeatedly or continuously over a period of a year or more, assuming a normal or average rate of physical usage.

It noted that household appliances, jewelry, precious stones, and other goods of luxury that were previously exported from the Philippines are also exempt from the payment of duties and taxes if these are covered by a Certificate of Identification (CI) that was issued by an authorized Customs Officer before these goods were brought out or exported from the Philippines.

Excisable items such as, but not limited to, distilled spirits, wines, cigars and cigarettes, perfumes, toilet waters, in excess of the allowable quantity to be prescribed by the Bureau shall be subject to payment of duties, taxes and other charges.

Those who would like to avail of the privilege, must secure the following: to sign and submit in advance to BOC a “Personal and Household Effect Declaration Form,” which will be issued by the Bureau in a separate order; in case of accompanied baggage, submit the accomplished form upon arrival to a Customs Officer; secure a Duty and Tax Free Exemption Certificate (TEC) from the Revenue Office of the Department of Finance (DOF).

The BOC said the amount of exemption is as follows:

PHP350,000.00 for those who have stayed in a foreign country for at least ten (10) years and have not availed of this privilege within ten (10) years prior to the Returning Resident’s or OFW’s arrival;

PHP250,000.00 for those who have stayed in a foreign country for a period of at least five (5) years but not more than ten (10) years and have not availed of this privilege within five (5) years prior to the Returning Residents or OFW’s arrival; or

PHP150,000.00 for those who have stayed in a foreign country for a period of less than five (5) years and have not availed for this privilege within six (6) months prior to the Returning Resident’s or OFW’s arrival.

“In addition to the privilege stated above, Returning OFWs are allowed to bring in, tax and duty-free, home appliances and other durables limited to one (1) of a kind, the total amount of which shall NOT exceed PHP150,000.00. Any amount in excess shall be subject to corresponding duties and taxes,” the BOC said.

It added that the goods/items excluded from these privileges: luxury items, unless covered by a pre – departure Certificate of Identification; vehicles; watercrafts; aircrafts; animals; donations; goods intended for barter, sale or hire; goods in commercial quantity; regulated goods in excess of the limits allowed by regulations; and prohibited and restricted goods.

The public may view the whole text of CAO No. 06-2016 at the BOC website ( Ferdinand Patinio/