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CFO Seminar (Philippines)

By Erika Presson
Last Updated: October 28, 2013


  • The reader has the DUTY/RESPONSIBILITY to verify information from the aforementioned government agencies on their own - Not through hearsays, forums, or blogs (YES, including this blog). Please read my disclaimer here.
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  • The articles found on this blog are applicable to all I-129F Petitions, K1 Visa Applicants, AOS (from a K1 Visa), and ROC applicants unless otherwise noted. The I-129F Process and AOS is the same for all foreign beneficiaries/spouses. Some K1 Visa Process articles are written specifically for applicants from the Philippines. Please refer to your country's U.S. Consulate/Embassy website for country-specific instructions.

CFO stands for Commission on Filipinos Overseas. It is a Philippine government agency that is responsible for providing pre-departure seminars to Filipino emigrants. These seminars are helpful, especially to first-time emigrants, because it explains a bit of the immigration process, what people need to do or what to expect when they move abroad, who to turn to when things go awry, etc. More information about CFO here »


*ATTENTION! CFO has an ONLINE APPOINTMENT SYSTEM effective May 15th, 2014! No walk-ins allowed.

Read about it here: CFO Online Appointment System for Fiancé(e)’s, Spouses, and Partners »





CFO Online Appointment / Registration |  | © 2014,  (

CFO Online Appointment / Registration | CFO Seminar (Philippines) | © 2014, (

Requirements: Must have a Digital Photo for uploading along with submission of online form.



Can I attend the CFO Seminar before my K1 (US) Visa Interview?

Yes, you can. Though keep in mind that you will need to go back there to get the CFO Sticker affixed on your Passport with the issued K1 Visa.


Is it really required to attend this Seminar? Can’t I just skip this part of the process?

Yes, this is a REQUIRED seminar in accordance to the Republic Act 10364 “Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012”. This is a mandatory counseling service for Filipinos in intermarraiges. The full text is found here:

People who haven’t completed this Seminar will not get the CFO Guidance Counseling Certificate and the Passport Emigrant Sticker. If the immigrant is not able to present this at the time of his/her flight out of the Philippines, he/she will be refused to board his/her plane.

More Information hereCFO Seminar FAQ’s »


Can I attend the CFO Seminar without a Passport?

No, you have to have your passport with you. There are *SOME* reports that people may have been able to attend the CFO Seminar without a passport (But wasn’t issued a sticker yet. You have to come back for it). You only have to inform them that you’re done with the Visa Interview, that you were approved, and are just currently waiting for passport delivery. But *IF EVER* you do decide to go have your Seminar to check it off your list of things to do, make sure you have your passport photocopies with you.

My thoughts: Why take two trips when you can do it in one? You’re just waiting for your passport and visa delivery. Think about it especially if you come from outside of Metro Manila. Think of transportation and food expenses. ;) (I did do it in two trips though because I had time off from work and was in the area.)


What requirements / documents do I need to bring with me to the CFO Seminar?

  • Passport (AND K1 / US Visa if already issued)
  • Passport Bio Photocopy
  • K1 / US Visa Photocopy (if already issued)
  • 2 Valid Government ID’s with photo (SSS ID, Philhealth ID, Unified ID, NBI Clearance, Postal ID, Driver’s License, etc.)
  • Photocopy of Valid Government ID’s
  • Registration Forms (This is readily available there at the CFO and can be filled up on-site)
  • *Immigrant Data Summary (IDS) for other US-bound emigrants (EXCEPT FOR K1 VISA HOLDERS. K1 Visa holders do not have this IDS Sheet)
  • *Photocopy of IDS Sheet (EXCEPT FOR K1 VISA HOLDERS)
  • CENOMAR (For K1) / CEMAR: Original (Printed on NSO Paper)
  • Photocopy of CENOMAR (For K1) / CEMAR
  • Other Documents that may be required by the Guidance Counselor***


***What are these Other Documents that may be required by the Guidance Counselor?

There’s no -advertised- list but I learned at the CFO Seminar that they MAY ask you for a lot of things. If applicable, please bring the following:

  • Fiancé(e)’s / Spouse’s Birth Certificate Copy
  • Annulment / Divorce Decrees of previously married fiancé(e)s or spouses
  • Death certificates of the ex-spouse of previously married fiancé(e)s or spouses
  • Photos of you and your fiancé(e) or spouse
  • Parental Consent for applicants under 18 years of age.
  • Parental Advice for applicants over 18 and under 25 years of age.
  • Valid Photo ID of the parent(s) who signed the Parental Consent / Advice

Do take these additional documents seriously. Else, it might delay your issuance of clearance/certificate.

*UPDATE 3/18/2015: There have been reports that the Parental Consent and Advice need to be notarized. And that you must bring a valid ID of the parent(s) who signed it – with photo, and signature.


What if they ask me about proof of singleness of my US Citizen fiancé(e)?

There is no CENOMAR equivalent for US Citizens. There’s the “Affidavit in Lieu of a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage”. It’s $50 at USEM and must be requested by the US Citizen (USC). This is mostly used by USC’s when contracting marraige in the Philippines. (I wouldn’t go through the trouble of acquiring it really, because…) They also have a tax form, Form 1040, that will indicate their status being “single”. If you choose to present/submit a photocopy of this Form 1040, make sure you block off the Social Security Number portion.


How many slots are available for US-bound emigrants?

The CFO website advertises that they have only 30 slots for US-bound emigrants. 15 in the morning, 15 in the afternoon. Their schedule is posted here »


So I hear the CFO Seminar is First Come, First Serve?

Yes, it is. So I suggest showing up at 5am (or earlier. Yes, earlier.) to secure a spot.

Not anymore (as of May 15th, 2014). You HAVE to schedule your Appointment for the CFO Seminar online through this link:

Fiancé(e)s and Spouses line up at 5-5:30am by the ramp. | CFO Seminar Philippines |  | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Fiancé(e)s and Spouses line up at 5-5:30am by the ramp. | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Where do Fiancé(e)’s and Spouses line up?

Line up by the RAMP.

Fiancé(e)'s and Spouses' line at about 6:30am | CFO Seminar Philippines |  | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Fiancé(e)’s and Spouses’ line at about 6:30-7am | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Is there any particular information that is needed in order to fill up the forms completely?

Yes. Make sure you have the following information available:

  • Basic Information about you (Name, Address, Birthday, etc.; Your Birthplace is important too, specify which city/town/area/province)
  • Basic Information about your petitioner – same as above (Sometimes you are going to be asked for their Birth Certificate copy)
  • FULL MAIDEN NAME of fiance(e)/spouse’s MOTHER
  • Contact person in the Philippines, specifically immediate family as in Father, Mother, Siblings.
  • Landline Number of Petitioner. If no landline is available, Landline of Petitioner’s Nearest Relative or Petitioner’s Neighbor.
  • Petitioner’s Educational Attainment, Degree/Course, Occupation
  • Information on Petitioner’s Divorce/Annulment/Death of previous wife or husband (Dates and such). You must have a copy of the Divorce Decree.
  • ZIPCODES. Yes, people were given a few minutes to find out their Zipcodes. Both the petitioner and the beneficiary. Never forget to write those.

What do I get after the CFO Seminar?

  • If you still don’t have your Visa,youwill be issued your CFO Seminar Certificate and receipt. And you will need to go back, register and get your CFO Sticker.

    CFO Seminar Counseling Certificate and Receipt | CFO Seminar Philippines |  | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

    CFO Seminar Counseling Certificate and Receipt | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

  • If you already have your Visa in hand when you attend your CFO Seminar, you’d get both CFO Seminar Certificate and Emigrant Sticker in the same day.

How much is the CFO Seminar Fee?

It’s PhP 400.00, About $10. But do check the CFO Website for updated fees.


Why do people get One-on-One Counseling?

It’s because they have incomplete forms and/or documents and cannot answer the counselor’s questions confidently.


I don’t want to be hassled by 1-on-1 Counseling. I have read / heard some horror stories about it.

Well, there is no “perfect formula” / assurance that you won’t get 1-on-1 counseling but listening attentively to the counselor, answering his/her questions during the discussions. having complete documents / completely filled out forms, and being truthful/confident with your answers will probably help. All they are trying to do is make sure that you know what you are getting yourself into [moving and/or getting married].

*Update 10/24/2014: There might have been a policy change on One-on-One counseling. Everyone might be required to do so now.


This is a review / walkthrough that I posted on the VisaJourney Forums on May 30th, 2013

*Please be reminded that as of May 15, 2014 the ONLINE CFO SEMINAR APPOINTMENT SYSTEM is LIVE. No Walk-ins Allowed!

CFO Manila

Citigold Center, 1345 Pres. Quirino Avenue
corner Osmeña Highway (South Superhighway)
Manila, Philippines 1007


I’ve been reading threads here on saying that there are only 30 slots for Fiance(e)’s and Spouses everyday at the CFO HQ. I checked the website, it said 15 in the morning and 15 in the afternoon. Though it said it’s country-specific and has “allocations” of 15 slots for each countries, I didn’t want to risk it.

I got there at 4:15am. We were only 5 at the time, and we sat on the steps leading to the CFO entrance. I met Steve previously in a Facebook Group and learned from him that his fiancee, Joan, would be attending too. She got there at about 4:30am and immediately called her.

It was about 5am when people started to show up and one lady (I suppose she owns the “mini-store” outside CFO), told us to line up by the ramp instead. This is where fiance(e)’s and spouses line up. There would be separate lines for other types of immigrants. (So make sure you tell your fiance(e)’s to line up at the ramp.) It wasn’t country-specific at all. Some people in line were fiancee’s of European nationals.

CFO opened at about quarter to 7, but they only let the other immigrants in first. We were the last line to enter the building.

Also a REMINDER: Make sure to bring 2 valid GOVERNMENT ID’s. Whether it’s a Driver’s License, Unified ID, SSS, PhilHealth, NBI Clearance. As long as it’s a goverment issued ID, you won’t get turned away. One lady was turned away because she only had one “valid” ID. They should’ve just stated that what they want are government ID’s in the first place. Make sure you have at least 2 photocopies of it, just to be sure.

When I got inside, at the reception desk, I was only asked for my: Passport, 2 Valid ID’s, Checked if I have my photocopy of those valid ID’s, and I was given an ID with a Lanyard with a Pink “F” on it. For Fiancee, I guess? :P We were then told to go up the 3rd floor to fill up forms.

Word of advice: Take the stairs. It’s faster than the so-called elevator. LOL

When you get to the 3rd floor, You’d be asked to fill up an Information Sheet. (Yes, you have to fill it up there, It’s not the downloadable one on the CFO website.)

Make sure you answer ALL questions/fields. Rendering this incomplete will be one of their criterias for you to be “HELD/ON HOLD” for one on one counseling.

Information Needed on the Form:
– Basic Information about you, the fiance(e)/spouse (Name, Address, Birthday, etc.; Your Birthplace is important too, specify which city/town/area/province)

– Basic Information about your petitioner (Sometimes you are going to be asked for the Birth Certificate copy)

– FULL MAIDEN NAME of fiance(e)/spouse’s MOTHER

– Contact person in the Philippines, specifically immediate family as in Father, Mother, Siblings. (I forgot what happened to the other one who listed her cousin. I think she was asked for her cousin’s birth certificate. Which got her on “Hold” status.)

– Landline Number of Petitioner. (I know, I know, most of you guys don’t use landlines now. That’s what was running through my mind too.) If no landline is available, Landline of Petitioner’s Nearest Relative or Petitioner’s Neighbor. (IKR!? Neighbor?)

– Petitioner’s Educational Attainment, Degree/Course, Occupation

– Information on Petitioner’s Divorce/Annulment/Death of previous wife or husband. You must have a copy of the Divorce Decree. (One lady was asked to show the Death Certificate of the petitioner’s previous wife.)

– ZIPCODES. Yes, people were given a few minutes to find out their Zipcodes. Both the petitioner and the beneficiary. Never forget to write those.

So far, these are the ones that stuck out from the tedious checking of individual forms by the counselor.

People were asked to show documents. It’s not a specified list of documents. Just whatever the counselor wants to see. So better go there prepared! As for me, I was just asked for photos of me and my fiance, Christopher.

By that time, she was already saying, If you don’t fill up your forms properly, I will put you on “hold”. She already mentioned 3 names that were on hold. Then she said, those of us who are “OK’d” by her, can now go downstairs to the first floor to pay at the Cashier.

So we did. We paid PHP400. Roughly $10.

We then went back upstairs and the counselor was still checking forms. In the end, the room full of 16 people, 10 were put on hold. Meaning, one-on-one counseling with her.

Mind you, we’re not all US fiance(e)’s/spouses in the seminar “Session” as prescribed in the CFO website info. At first I thought it would be 15 from US, 15 from Canada, and so on. NOPE. In the same session, some were fiance(e)s/spouses from other countries. So I HIGHLY RECOMMEND getting there very early in the morning to secure a spot.

Inside one of the rooms, waiting for the Counselor | CFO Seminar Philippines |  | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Inside one of the rooms, waiting for the Counselor | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

So when everything was already checked, we started with the lectures. She, of course, started with the history of CFO (which is in the website). The CFO Certificate and stickers. The CFO Certificate is valid for life. It doesn’t expire. So make sure you take care of it and make copies. Never hand in the original to anyone. You can show them the original, but they may not keep it. It’s a HUGE hassle to get it replaced.

And then explained at length who their CLIENTELE are. Meaning, they serve those family-based petition immigrants, the fiance(e) and spouses, etc. etc. Honestly, she didn’t have to explain those in detail, adding up stories. Most especially going into lengths about the Filipino Au Pair Visa. This part draaaaagggggeeeed for so long.

After that, Domestic Violence was discussed, which organizations to contact, who to call. (She gave her personal mobile number, she says she’s the only one who does that.)

She then covered what documents to bring when traveling, baggage allowances, airport fees, travel tax, embarkation cards, customs forms, etc.

Showed a visa packet brought by one of the spouses, and that the IDS (for IR/CR1’s) shouldn’t be removed from the packet.

She then proceeded to explaining what you should do when you get to the US: getting married, filing for adjustment of status, stressed on the validity of green cards, report of marraiges, amendments to passports, etc.

By this time, we were done. And those “OK’d” people can claim their certificates downstairs on the First floor, and those who were “On hold” will have their one-on-one counseling with her.

We got our certificates and got out at 1:30pm. We will have to go back there after the Visa is issued so we can get our passport CFO sticker.

So there, good luck to everyone who are going to take the CFO Seminar. Just remember, be armed with documents. Be prepared.

And go there early! :)

So did you go back to get your CFO Sticker?

Yes I did. (Foursquare Check-in on July 19th!) I didn’t have to go there super early like with the seminar on May 30th.

CFO Sticker / Emigrant Sticker | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

CFO Sticker / Emigrant Sticker | CFO Seminar Philippines | ©2013, Life As Mrs. Presson (

Do you need an online appointment to get your CFO Sticker?

No, you don’t need an appointment to get your Emigrant Sticker.


What did you bring with you?

  • Passport with Visa
  • Photocopy of Passport
  • Photocopy of Visa
  • 2 Valid Government ID’s
  • CFO Seminar Certificate and Receipt
  • Registration Form (It can be downloaded and printed, or get a form there and fill it up while waiting in line.)

Did you have to pay anything again?

Nope. That Php 400.00 you paid beforehand will cover everything. Just show them the receipt you got with your CFO Seminar Certificate.


I’m still confused. What comes first? Seminar or Sticker?

The CFO Seminar comes first. After completing the seminar, they will issue you a CFO Seminar / Guidance Counseling Certificate and Receipt. With those two, you will be able to get your CFO / Emigrant Sticker afterwards. This is,of course, assuming that you have your Visa in your Passport already. CFO has a flowchart posted on their website.


Is the CFO Seminar required for Tourist Visa Holders?

No, it’s not required for Tourist Visa Holders. It’s required for intending immigrants.


How long is the CFO Seminar Certificate valid for?

For life. As long as you have your certificate with you. No renewals. If you lose it, of course you have to acquire a replacement certificate, but with a fee.


If I did the CFO Seminar in just one day, Will I get my certificate and sticker right away?

Yes. You will be able to go through the seminar, get your CFO certificate, and have you passport affixed with the Emigrant Sticker in just one day. In half a day at the most. This is, of course, having already secured a slot for the seminar that day. Here’s a brief summary / timeline:

  • 4am / 5am Line up (At the ramp!) for a CFO seminar slot
  • 7am Registration (At the 3rd floor)
  • 9am CFO Seminar / Counseling
  • About 1:30pm Releasing of Certificate / Registration for the CFO Sticker
  • 1:45 to 2:00pm Releasing of CFO Sticker


Can I bring my fiancé(e) / family member / friend to the Seminar?

You can bring them to the CFO Office, Yes. Can they attend the seminar with you on the third floor? No. They will have to wait in the waiting area where there are a lot of seats in front of cashier-type windows. This is actually the room on the first floor where you are going to pay for your fees and where you would be getting your emigrant sticker.


Where is CFO (Manila) located?

Citigold Center, 1345 Pres. Quirino Avenue
corner Osmeña Highway (South Superhighway)
Manila, Philippines 1007



Already completed the CFO Seminar? Ready to leave the country? You might want to read these then:




Disclaimer: I do not work for nor am I affiliated with the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO), Manila, Philippines. This guide was made with the sole intention of helping other CFO Seminar attendees to understand what goes on during the CFO Seminar. For the full disclaimer, please click here.



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(Please click on "Show Replies" to read other comments/replies)

  1. Randy says:

    Hello po. I am an American with a Filipino fiance. She is currently living in Hong Kong and she has already received her K-1 Visa from the US Consulate in Hong Kong. Does she still need to get CFO? She will need to fly back to Philippines before coming to USA? The plan is that she would wait until her contract expires in January and then fly directly to USA. Please help me understand this better. Thank you.

  2. Neri says:

    Hi. You have an awesome blog. Thank you for sharing all these information and experiences. .
    I am leaving the country on a K1 visa my sons coming with me Do you know if he needs to attend this CFO seminar too? I emailed the CFO asking for this last week but until they havent replied. Thank you so much .

    • All Filipinos exiting the country with the intent to immigrate (K1/K2’s are non-immigrant visas BUT with immigrant INTENT) are required to undergo counseling from CFO and MUST have the Emigrant Sticker and CFO certificate like the intending immigrant parent. Children of a certain age group also requires a DSWD clearance.

      CALL CFO. Do not expect them to respond to your email. They are only a phone call away.

  3. J.R. says:

    This is a comment about corruption at CFO.

    Excellent blog, Mrs. Presson — thanks for helping others with this information. My Filipina wife has been here 15 months now — we are married and she has her two-year green card — and we are reading your guidance about the documents we need for the “permanent” green card.

    This is a comment about the CFO process. When my then-fiancee went to CFO Manila (2014), the counselor told her there were numerous problems with her paperwork — and then told my fiancee that they (CFO) could recommend a person who could fix everything. CFO went on to tell her that she should cancel her flights to the USA, because there was no way she would get CFO approval in time. (The flights were weeks away; we had booked once the US Visa was received). My fiancee called me from CFO, in tears. She stated that there were several other fiancees in a similar situation. I “smelled a rat”, as they say; this “person who could fix everything” would charge a substantial fee, a portion of which would be given under the table to employees at CFO. I advised my fiancee to tell the counselor “Never mind — my fiancee is calling immigration attorney Mr. X”. Mr. X is a prominent immigration attorney in Manila with high level government connections; I had consulted with him early in our fiancee visa process. Well, as soon as my fiancee told the counselor this, the counselor proceeded to approve the packet, issued the CFO certificate, and sent my fiancee on her way.

    If this happens to you, be prepared with the name of a reputable immigration attorney (in Manila, if that is where you are visiting CFO). This kind of corruption is especially difficult for applicants who have traveled a great distance, and those whose fiancees have lesser means. I hope more people can fight this kind of corruption. There is no justification for it.

    • Yikes. Glad your wife wasn’t duped into paying the fees. Sadly, some people fall prey to these “traps” by people of “authority”, and not just at CFO. It happens in other government agencies as well. I hope the new president that will get elected this coming 2016 PH Elections will do something about the corruption in the government. Thanks for sharing your story!

      Also, I’m happy that she is already a permanent resident! Congratulations!

  4. Nayah Jane says:

    Hello Mrs. Presson,

    Good day! I have a question and I am really confused. We got married in foreign country and I report my marriage in the Phil. embassy. My husband which is American citizen file a spouse visa and I am staying here in Egypt waiting for my visa interview. I used a tourist visa when I came here and luckily I acquired 1 year touristic visa. My question is, do I need to get CFO sticker once I travel to US from Egypt?

    Please help and advice me what to do. Thank you so much.
    God bless you.

    Nayah Jane

  5. Sash says:

    Thanks for the prompt reply. Do you happen to know what documents i needed to bring? Do i really need to have affidavit of lost?

  6. Sash says:

    I lost my CFO GCC. Seeking your advice please. Anyone who ever had the same experience? Thanks

  7. Francis says:

    Hello Mrs. Presson,

    Can you please explain to me to your knowlege (if its not much trouble hehe) why they require this CFO seminar. It’s such a hassle and its like they don’t really prepare clients for the seminar. Thank goodness you’re so generous to help others. It just baffles me how they make a list of requirements, but then once there, they ask for more than what was stated in their website. Thank you :D


  8. Mheagan says:

    I am preparing my requirements for the CFO seminar and I am a bit confused of those ID’s. Should I wait for my married passport before processing my visa?I have my passport already but not yet renewed into my married one.
    I have my appointment already bext tuesday oct 20,2015.
    Salamat, hoping for a reply!

  9. Aiza steffen says:

    Hi.. Just wondering… I lost my CFO receipt, can i still get a sticker?

  10. Buena says:

    Hello Mrs. Presson
    I have my CFO already last 2006 should i attend the seminar again because i have already my visa going to Canada and i am leaving on Sept.16 2015.


    • The only way to make sure is to contact CFO themselves.

      “PDOS” is different from the “CFO Seminar” for fiancé(e)’s and spouses. As far as I know, if you had the same seminar as before, then your CFO Emigrant Sticker and Certificate is still valid, IF you still have them. Again, Contact CFO directly as I do not work for CFO and they would have the utmost authority on the issue.

  11. AJ says:

    Got it! Well, thanks for updating your original post on the requirement list.

  12. AJ says:

    Hello, Mrs. Presson.
    I have a photocopy of my CENOMAR from the original that I gave for the K-1 Visa Interview at the US Embassy. Do I still need order another CENOMAR issued by NSO and printed on NSO security paper or will my photocopy be enough for the CFO GCP requirement?
    Also, if I do need to order another CENOMAR online, for what reason should I get it for (Marriage, Passport/Travel, Others [please specify reason])?
    Thanks! Your website is so informative and helpful.

  13. Hello Mrs. Presson

    I was wondering about the IDs they really require two? I only have an NBI clearance and a Barangay ID since I never claimed my other IDs. Will those be okay?

    • Based on their official requirements posted on their website: yes, 2.

      Based on previous (mine and others’) experiences: Yes, 2. Otherwise, I would’ve corrected the information I posted on my blog.

      You can always check directly with the government agency involved when in doubt of information you’ve found online. Contact numbers are available on the CFO Website.

      Good luck!

  14. alexander nguyen says:

    Hello Mrs. Presson,
    I came to the philippines to help my fiancee at the US embassy with her interview. I did not know about this CFO requirement. If i did, i would have gone with her to help her too. I am currently back home overseas. I did not read anything about having to give a copy of my passport, divorce decree, or anything about a copy of a picture of myself and her above. I do not feel comfortable giving out my personal information to anybody overseas because of all the identity thefts around the world. I think if the whole CFO process is legitimate, then they should be able to get all the information from the US embassy themselves. Right? I also read that the US embassy DOES NOT require the CFO sticker or requirement online. she already has her k1 visa too. She even paid for the fee of 400 peso for the CFO fee. I am really mad/upset now. If the CFO is legitimate, then they should BE ABLE to get all the information for themselves at the US embassy in Manila. Right?

    • Hi,

      I understand your frustrations. But these are two entirely different governments: US and the Philippines. They cannot simply “acquire” information from the other.

      CFO is a legitimate process. You might have missed this on the Official US Embassy Website in Manila:

      Pre Departure Orientation Seminar
      Philippine law requires all departing Filipino emigrants or those leaving the country to settle permanently abroad to attend the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) with the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO). Only emigrants aged 12 years and younger are exempted from attending the PDOS. Although this is not a U.S. Government requirement, we do make this information available to all fiancé(e) and immigrant visa applicants. An information sheet regarding the CFO/PDOS seminar is attached to a visa packet to ensure that applicants are aware of this requirement.

      For additional information (registration and counseling requirements, PDOS schedule, and schedule of guidance and counseling sessions), the applicant may visit CFO’s website at:

      If your fiancée doesn’t go through with the CFO Seminar, she will be denied access to board her plane. This CFO Seminar is mandated by Philippine Law like I have referenced above, at the start of the article.

      Your fiancé(e) is a Filipino Citizen, and she will be until she applies and approved for US Citizenship (which she will be eligible for after being married to you, the petitioner, for 3 years.) Until then, she is bound to follow and abide by Philippine Laws – especially Report of Marriage abroad, Philippine Passport Renewals, and other vital events.

  15. Sunny says:

    Hi, po! I’m 25 years of age, do I need to secure with me the Parental Advice?and my husband is still a student and for a fact he’s not employed yet, I’m confuse if he’s still going to be my petitioner or it would be his father??

  16. vivian says:


  17. Jennilyn tan says:

    Hello mrs. Presson i have my visa already and my flight is in may 29.. My flight is from manila to beijing. And from beijing to new york… My question is do i need to check in again and go to custom or immigration when i stop over to beijing or no?

  18. Aileen Ylagan says:

    Good day, I have a question about CFO. i’m confused about the seminar. is GCP held at CFO Office which in Citigold bldg or in PRISM bldg at Taft ave.? I saw some blogs it was held at PRISM and not in CFO Office. I already have an appointment this coming Monday. Hoping for reply Thanks

    • Your confirmation page should have information on where you’re taking your CFO Seminar. If it doesn’t say anything, call CFO directly. It’s just a phone call away. You can’t just base your decision on blogs, including mine. You also have to take note WHEN they wrote the blogs. It is up to date? If not, I’ve reminded people to check with OFFICIAL sources / government agencies directly.

  19. Richard says:

    Hello Mrs Presson,
    I am the petioner of my fiancé I will be coming to Manila to join her for her k1 interview but would like to do the CFO seminar first. my question is will I be able to help her fill out the information form at the CFO lobby building before she attends the seminar? Or does she have to fill it out on her own.

    • Not entirely sure if she can bring the form down to you. We were handed forms to fill up at the third floor. Not sure if they changed the prodecures for that (but most likely) since they already implemented the online registration / appointment. Also, only applicants are allowed on the third floor where the seminar is held. Anyone else should remain in the waiting area.

What do you think?

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