If you have an OFW relative who died abroad, you can actually claim their death benefits from OWWA. If the deceased OFW was an active member of OWWA, the beneficiaries can claim up to PHP 200,000, depending on the nature of death. The money will help in funding for the funeral and burial costs of the OFW.
One of the good things about being a member of OWWA is that you can maximize the membership you are paying by claiming all the benefits you can claim if you are an OFW or a relative of one.
In this article, we are going to share with you some of the benefits that an OFW can claim when he/she dies when working abroad. So, if you are currently working abroad right now or you have a relative in other countries, you may use this as a guide to check what you can claim.
What are the death benefits OFWs can claim from OWWA?
The death and burial benefits of OWWA are divided into two: for a natural cause and for an accidental cause. The rightful heirs or relatives of the OFW who died abroad caused by a natural cause or for an accidental cause can claim the benefits so they would have something to spend for the funeral and other things left by the OFW.
Here are the death and burial benefits OFWs can claim from OWWA:
- P100,000 for natural cause
- P200,000 for accidental cause
- Additional P20,000 for funeral expenses
These are the monetary benefits when you die abroad. Whatever the cause is, as long as it’s natural or accidental, your relatives will be able to claim the funds.
What are the documents needed to claim the benefits?
To claim the death and burial benefits, there are a couple of documents that your relative should submit to OWWA before they can claim the monetary benefits. The following are the documents needed to claim the death and burial benefits. These are according to the official website of OWWA:
- Original Death Certificate issued by the local civil registrar or authenticated by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA)
- Foreign Death Certificate for OFWs who died abroad including Airway Bill and Consular Mortuary Certificate or No Objection Certificate
- Accident Report for death due to accident
- Burial permit
- Official receipt of funeral expenses
- 2 valid IDs and 1 pc. ID picture of the claimant
- Certificate of no marriage (CENOMAR) of OFW from PSA
- Any of the applicable documents certified by the local civil registrar (LCR) or PSA:
- Marriage certificate – if the claimant is the spouse
- Birth certificate of OFW – if the claimant is father or mother
- Birth certificate of the child and death certificate of a deceased spouse – if the claimant is the child
- Affidavit of Undertaking executed by the claimant (Police report if death is due to an accident)
If you are the relative of an OFW who died abroad, you have to make sure that all of these requirements are complete already before you go to the office of OWWA to claim the said benefits.
Process in Claiming Death Benefits from OWWA
Now that you know what the requirements are and how much you can actually get in case your relative abroad dies because of natural or accidental causes, it’s time to the process of claiming your benefits.
The procedure is not that complicated as long as you have all the requirements. You will only encounter challenges when getting the requirements. Here’s the procedure when claiming OWWA death benefits:
Step 1: Prepare all the requirements needed.
The first thing you have to do is to prepare all the requirements needed to claim OWWA death benefits. The requirements are all ready mentioned above. You have to make sure that you have all of them when you go to OWWA. The most essential requirement is the death certificate as it will identify the cause of death.
Step 2: Submit the requirements to the OWWA office.
OWWA has different branches all over the country. So, even if you are not from Manila or nearby the head office, you can submit the requirements or at least let the office know that you are filing for a claim of death and burial benefits.
Step 3: Wait for the approval of the death claims.
OWWA needs to process the application for the claim before they hand you the money. The process won’t take that long but you have to give OWWA time and wait for approval. Usually, you don’t need to do anything after you have submitted all the needed documents. You just need to wait.
A successful claim of death and burial benefits
OWWA providing assistance to OFWs is undoubtedly helpful. According to the website of OWWA, there had been many times that the agency helped OFWs and provided the benefits they deserved.
In one of the news posted on OWWA’s website, it was stated there that OWWA XI provided assistance to the families of Filipino workers who died in Spain. The facts stated that the officer in charge and the repatriation team provided airport assistance to the surviving family of the OFWs who died because they accidentally breathed poisonous fumes when they were working. Aside from the death and burial benefits, OWWA also provided 15,000 pesos to the surviving spouse as a livelihood grant and a scholarship grant for the eldest children of the two deceased OFWs.
Claiming the death benefits of your loved ones is simple and easy if you follow the procedure above. Also, it’s essential that you complete all the requirements so you can successfully claim the benefits of your deceased relatives abroad. If you are an OFW or you have relatives abroad, you should be informed of the benefits you can get from OWWA including death and burial benefits. OWWA can be generous by providing more assistance to the families if need be.
That is why it is also important for OFWs to keep your OWWA membership active! It is only a minimal fee you pay every work contract (usually 2 years) so please do pay it so you can also take advantage of these claims if not for yourself, then for your loved ones.