Employers in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East used to hold the passports of OFWs upon their arrival.
However, with the implementation of Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministries Resolution No. 166, employers can no longer hold their employee’s passport as it is already prohibited by the said law.
It is then considered illegal and is against the right of the OFWs.
But then, in cases where your passport is still in the possession of your employer, here are simple ways that may help you get it back.
- Inform your employer that your passport is about to expire and you need to renew it
This is the easiest way so far but make sure that your passport is really nearly expiring. Otherwise, your employer might hold it even longer for thinking that you are fooling or tricking him/her.
- Report your employer to the labor office.
As provided by the law, based on Saudi Arabia’s Council of Ministries Resolution No. 166, employers are not to withhold their employee’s passport anymore but process may take about 3-4 months before the court will give its decision in your favour.
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However, by doing this, your employer might take your action against him/her and you might be put into trouble.
You can either be maltreated or he/she might file a faux case against you.
- Treat as if you lost your passport and apply for a new one
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By declaring that you had totally lost your passport, you are then to apply for a replacement of it.
However, you are to submit an Affidavit of Loss stating the details how it gets lost.
For the police report, do not tell them that your passport is with your employer.
You can inform them that you misplaced it due to negligence or you may think of
another valid reason.