If you are an OFW and your Philippine driver’s license is about to expire, you might be wondering how to renew it without going back to the Philippines. Fortunately, there is a way to do so through a representative. The Land Transportation Office (LTO) has issued Administrative Order No. RIB-2008-011, s. 2007, that allows Filipinos living abroad with valid Philippine driver’s licenses to renew them through an authorized person. This is a great convenience for OFWs and dual-citizens who do not have to travel just to renew their LTO Driver’s licenses.
In this article, we will guide you through the steps of renewing your license through a representative. We will also list the documents you need to prepare and the fees you need to pay.
Why Renew the Driver’s License?
You might be wondering why you need to renew your driver’s license if you are not in the country and not using your LTO license to drive. The truth is, you can skip the renewal process if your license expires while you are abroad and you plan to return to the Philippines within two years after the expiration date. You can just renew it when you come back, but you will have to pay a penalty fee for late renewal, which may cost you a few hundred pesos. However, this might be more convenient than going through the hassle of renewing it through a representative.
If you are staying abroad for more than two years, it is advisable to renew your license. Licenses that have expired for more than two years (but less than ten) can still be renewed, but you will have to retake and pass the theoretical and practical driving exams. Licenses that have expired for ten years or more are no longer valid for renewal, and you will have to start from scratch and apply for a student permit.
How to Renew LTO Driver’s License of OFWs Abroad
One of the challenges of living abroad is renewing your driver’s license without having to appear at LTO. The process can be complex and confusing, especially if you are not familiar with the rules and requirements of the Land Transportation Office (LTO). To make things easier for you, we have prepared a step-by-step guide on how to renew your license online while staying overseas:
1. Get an Authorized Representative
Ask any relative or friend to renew your driver’s license on your behalf. However, he or she must prepare the following documents first before appearing in LTO:
Requirements for Renewal
- Photocopies of Passport of the license holder (first page, visa-page and pages indicating the date of last departure from the Philippines and date of last arrival overseas)
- Special Power of Attorney (SPA) from the licensee to the LTO requesting the renewal and authorizing a representative to renew the license on his or her behalf. The SPA must be authenticated by the Philippine Embassy or Consulate General.
- Photocopy of driver’s license and driver’s license receipt (DLR), (if applicable)
2. Send the representative to LTO
Ask your representative to go to the nearest LTO District Office to process your renewal. . Make sure that he or she has all the required documents ready to submit.
- Your representative should seek help from the customer service desk. If no one is available there, he or she can ask the guard on duty for guidance. The guard will likely direct him or her to the evaluator, who will check the documents and process the renewal.
- The evaluator will check the documents for completeness and authenticity. After checking the documents, he or she will submit them to Window 1.
- Pay the LTO renewal fees and wait for the release of the Driver’s License Official Receipt.
- The receipt should have the words “LICENSEE ABROAD. FOR THE PHOTO-TAKE WITHIN 30 DAYS UPON ARRIVAL” stamped on the right side by the releasing clerk.
If your representative lives in Metro Manila, he or she can renew your license at the LTO Central Office in Quezon City. If your representative lives elsewhere, he or she can choose any LTO field office to renew your license.
3. Get the Driver’s License card yourself
Within 30 days of your arrival in the Philippines, you must present yourself to the same LTO office where the renewal is processed. Bring the original copies of the passport, expired driver’s license, and the Driver’s License Official Receipt.
- Obtain a CDE certificate first before going to LTO. For this, you need an LTMS account. To create an LTMS account, please follow this guide. Log in to the system using your log-in credentials. Click on the E-Learning tab and select the CDE Online Validation Exam option. After that, click on the Start Exam button and begin the exam. You need to get 80%, or at least 20 correct answers out of 25 questions. This is the passing score for the exam and the requirement to create your certificate. There is no time limit for the exam. After passing, you can now print the certificate.
- Get a Medical Certificate. You will need to fill out a medical evaluation form that you can get from Window 1. Fill it out with some basic information, and leave the rest blank for the medical examiner. Then, you will go to an LTO-accredited facility for a medical checkup. They will measure your weight, height, and vision and write them on the form. After that, they will transmit the certificate electronically to the LTO system and then give you a physical copy of the certificate.
- Submit all the documents to Window 1. The personnel will look up your license information in the system. You will see your license details on the screen, and you can verify if they are correct or if you need any updates. If everything is fine, you can proceed to the next step.
- Go to Window 3, where they will register your fingerprints and take your photograph. They will also ask you if you want to update your signature. Go back to your seat and wait until they call your name again.
- Your renewed driver’s license will be ready at Window 4 (Releasing). They will call your name and ask you to sign the driver’s license release log. You will get a license that is valid for 10 years if you have no violations on record.
Total Cost of Driver’s License Renewal for OFWs Abroad
Here is the breakdown of the cost of renewing a driver’s license through a representative:
|TYPE OF FEE
|Penalty if expired (1 day to 1 year)
|Penalty if expired (1 year to 2 years)
|Penalty if expired (2 years but less than 10 years)
These fees for the license renewal are based on the LTO’s official website and may change without prior notice.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the frequently asked questions about renewing a driver’s license for OFWs and Filipinos living abroad:
1. I have a valid foreign driver’s license, and my Philippine license is expired. Can I use my foreign driver’s license to drive in the Philippines?
Yes. If you have a driver’s license from another country, you can use it in the Philippines for up to 90 days from your arrival date.
2. I have a valid foreign driver’s license and a valid Philippine license. Which one will I use to drive in the Philippines?
If both are valid, you can use any of the two driver’s licenses.
Renewing your driver’s license while living abroad can be a complicated and tedious process. However, it is necessary if you are not planning to return to the Philippines within two years of your license’s expiration date. Otherwise, you will have to apply for a new license and take the written and practical exams again. Fortunately, with this guide, you can renew your license online and authorize a representative to do the rest for you. You just need to prepare the required documents, follow the steps, and pay the fees. You can also get your new license card when you come back to the country within 30 days of your arrival. We hope this guide helps you renew your driver’s license without any hassle.