A police clearance is a document that many companies in the Philippines require from their candidates and new hires. It is also useful for other purposes, such as opening a bank account, applying for the civil service exam, or serving as a valid ID if you don’t have one. This is especially relevant for fresh graduates who are looking for jobs or have just landed one.
Fortunately, there is a faster and more convenient way to get a police clearance in the Philippines: an online application. The Philippine National Police (PNP) offers this service to make the process easier for Filipinos. This comprehensive guide will teach you everything you need to know about how to obtain a police clearance online in the shortest and most efficient way possible.
What is a Police Clearance?
A police clearance is a certificate that certifies the holder is free of derogatory records based on the PNP database and is available upon request. The main purpose of the clearance is to determine whether or not the person requesting it has any criminal cases filed against him or her in the area. You may be required to obtain a police clearance from either your place of residence or your place of employment, depending on who is requesting it.
We obtain a police clearance for a variety of reasons or requirements, including local employment, firearm registration, passport application, bank account application, and business permit, among others. It is also recognized as a valid ID in the Philippines, where it can be used for a variety of legal transactions and requirements.
The Philippine National Police (PNP), like the NBI, now has a national database or “centralized” system. The National Police Clearance System (NPCS) consolidates all records from various towns and cities into a single, unified database, making checking and verifying criminal records easier than ever. Because the applicant’s records can be easily retrieved at any police station, there is no need to choose between police clearance from the place of work or residence.
Types of Police Clearance
Even though the National Police Clearance System (NPCS) is centralized and far more efficient, online appointments for police clearance are still restricted to a small number of police stations nationwide. However, criminal record checks can be obtained from any police station, and from there, either of the following types of clearance can be issued:
National Police Clearance
The National Police Clearance (NPC) is comparable to the NBI Clearance in terms of scope. A police officer retrieves information from their database to identify if a person has a criminal history not only in the city or municipality where he or she resides but also in other areas of the Philippines. This type of police clearance requires an online appointment, and only a few police stations offer the National Police Clearance (NPC).
Local Police Clearance (LPC)
It is the common police clearance we used to obtain in an old-fashioned way before online appointments were a thing. It determines if the individual has a criminal record within the municipality. It is generally the type you would want if you were using it to look for work in the same area. The LPC, unlike the NPC, has limited coverage, so you should check with the requesting authority to see if you need an NPC or an LPC before proceeding and applying for one.
Police Clearance Requirements
The requirements for a police clearance vary depending on the type of clearance you are getting. If you are just getting a local police clearance, you need to present the following documents:
- Cedula or Community Tax Certificate: Get this from the municipal or city treasurer’s office. You can also get one from the barangay hall. Obtain this first before getting barangay clearance.
- Barangay Clearance from the barangay in which you are residing for at least three months, depending on the length-of-stay requirement of the barangay.
- 2 pieces of 2×2 ID Picture: They might have a camera to take ID pictures in the police station; it is much wiser to bring pictures in case you need them.
- A valid ID: Check the list below for the list of accepted identification cards.
If you are applying for a national police clearance, you do not need the cedula or barangay clearance. You just need at least two (2) valid IDs for verification purposes to claim your national police clearance. The IDs must be original, genuine, not expired, and show your complete name, signature, and clear photo.
To claim your national police clearance, bring any two of the following IDs honored by the PNP:
- AFP ID
- BFP ID
- GSIS UMID
- LTO Driver’s License
- PRC ID/License
- School ID with the registration form
- IBP ID
- PCG ID
- BJMP ID
- Marina ID
- Pag-IBIG ID
- OFW ID
- Alien Certificate of Registration
- Birth certificate
- SSS ID/UMID
- TIN ID
- PWD ID
- Voter’s ID
- PhilHealth ID
- PNP ID
- Postal ID
- Senior citizen ID
- National ID
If you only have one valid ID, the PNP will accept it if you show a certified true copy of your birth certificate (with an original official receipt).
How to Apply for a Local Police Clearance
Getting a local police clearance is a straightforward process. Unless you have a record on file, you will have no problem getting one. It will take just a few minutes, depending on the number of applicants that day and the distance between the police station and the municipal treasurer’s office.
- Go to the police station that has jurisdiction over your residence. It is usually found in the municipal hall or city hall compound, and you will not have a hard time finding it.
- Approach the officer at the help desk. Tell him or her that you are getting a police clearance. He or she will give you a Police Clearance Request Form.
- Fill out the request form and attach the required documents. Submit it to the police officer.
- The officer will ask you to proceed to the local treasurer’s office to pay for the police clearance Fee.
- With an official receipt in hand, go back to the police station.
- You will then be asked to affix your finger prints to the application form. They will check their records to see if you have pending cases, blotters, or any “hit”.
- If cleared, they will release your police clearance.
How to Apply for a Police Clearance Online?
The Philippine National Police offers an online method for completing police clearances. Inaugurated in August 2018, the National Police Clearance System (NPCS) is an online service that allows Filipinos to obtain a police clearance in less than ten minutes at any time. As the NPCS is linked to the PNP database, this web-based technology makes the process of confirming an applicant’s criminal history and biometric information much more efficient.
Applicants are still required to present themselves in person at a police station to have their biometrics captured. Before this online procedure was created, an in-person application for a police clearance typically took between thirty minutes and one hour.
Utilize the police clearance online appointment system to take advantage of its simplicity and efficacy if you need to apply for a police clearance. Here are four simple procedures to obtain an online police clearance.
1. Go to the NPCS Website
To begin your online registration for a police clearance, visit the NPCS website. A Terms and Conditions pop-up will appear. On the top-left portion of the window, select the language that you prefer. If you are registering for the first time, click the Register button. Read the Terms and Conditions and tick each box to indicate your acceptance. Select the Next button to proceed. Once you have reached the final page, click the I Agree button.
2. Register for an Account
To create an account, provide all the necessary details on the New Applicant Registration Form. Use a valid and active email address and indicate your name, gender, and birthday. Tick the Terms and Conditions box, then click the Register button to proceed with your police clearance application.
After that, a warning box will appear to remind you to double-check the information you’ve provided before proceeding. If you’re certain, click “Save.” Otherwise, press the “Cancel” button.
The NPCS will send you an email with a confirmation message. Check your inbox or spam folder for a message containing a link to verify your online NPCS account. Select the verification link. This action will take you to the NPCS website’s log-in page.
3. Log in to the NPCS Portal
To enter the NPCS portal, use the same email address and password that you used to register.
4. Complete the Application Information
After logging into the NPCS portal, click Edit Profile to complete your application. Provide all the information in your profile that hasn’t been filled out yet. If you are a Person with a Disability (PWD), tick the checkbox that says “Please check if you are a PWD” and provide your PWD ID number.
If you’re a recent graduate and now looking for a job for the first time, check the box that says “Please check if you are a First Time Job Seeker”. By RA 11261 (First Time Job Seeker Assistance Act), the police clearance fee will be waived for first-time job seekers if they can present a Barangay Certificate as proof of qualification. However, this benefit is only valid ONCE. If you need to get another police clearance in the future, you will have to pay the fee.
Check if all the information that you have provided is correct without missing data or spelling mistakes. Any information you provide at this point will be printed on the police clearance, so do not make any mistakes. If you are sure enough with the provided information, save your profile and then proceed to the clearance application.
5. Set an Appointment
To set an appointment, go to https://pnpclearance.ph/profile then click the Clearance Application button. Select the purpose of the Police Clearance application. If you are getting a police clearance for a job application, choose the General option. Otherwise, choose the LTOPF for the gun license application or the SOSIA for the security guard license application.
Choose your preferred Police station where you will transact and get the police clearance. Select the date and choose your preferred date and time (AM or PM) from the list of available dates. Then click Next.
6. Select the Payment Option
The police clearance online payment details will be displayed. Take note of the reference number that the system has issued. You’ll use the number for the police clearance fee payment.
You will now be redirected to the payment page. Choose Landbank as your mode of payment, then click the Save Appointment button. Do not forget to save or note the generated Reference Number, as you will use this number later on.
Click the Pay to Landbank button to proceed with the payment. It will take you to the LBP ePayment Portal, where you can pay online using your account with Landbank, GCash, or BancNet. Enter the account number and PIN, and wait for the transaction details and payment summary to display.
Please note that if you do not pay at least two banking days before your appointment date, your transaction will be canceled.
7. Go to the Police Station for Photo and Fingerprint Capture
Bring your two valid IDs, a reference number, and the official receipt of your police clearance payment to your scheduled appointment and present them to your chosen police station. Your photograph, fingerprints, and digital signature will be taken by the police NCO. You will also have your biometrics taken.
A police officer will verify your application by checking your biometrics and criminal history against the PNP database. If your application is successful, you will be required to go through another verification process. You can already obtain your police clearance once it has been resolved.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Here are the frequently asked questions about the PNP Police Clearance:
What is the validity of the National Police Clearance?
The police clearance is valid for six months. Each clearance has its own QR code, which ensures its authenticity.
Is personal appearance required when getting a police clearance?
Yes, whether you’re applying for a National or Local Police Clearance, you must appear in person. Although the police may have digitalized records of the applicants, personal information and the physical appearance of the person change over time. Therefore, you must update these records with your current photo and biometrics at your preferred police station on your scheduled date and time.
How much is the Police Clearance fee?
If you’re applying for a National Police Clearance online, you’ll be paying a total of PHP 160 (PHP 150 police clearance fee + PHP 10 transaction fee).
Can I get a National Police Clearance for free?
Yes, as long as you are a first-time job seeker. RA 11261 or the First Time Job Seeker Assistance Act prohibits the government from charging first-time job seekers for any fees or other costs associated with acquiring official documents, such as police clearance.
First-time job seekers availing of the benefits of RA 11261 shall present a barangay certification stating that the applicant is a first-time job seeker.
Do I need a Barangay Clearance and a Cedula for Police Clearance?
Barangay clearance and a cedula are no longer required for those seeking National Police Clearance. However, if you are applying for the Local Police Clearance, which does not require an online appointment, you must still obtain a barangay clearance and a cedula.
How do I renew the Police Clearance?
In the Philippines, police clearances are not renewed. You need to submit a fresh police clearance application through the NPCS after the police clearance validity period has passed (six months following release).
Getting a police clearance in the Philippines is not as difficult as some may think. Unlike in the past, police clearance applications are now much more efficient. The National Police Clearance System has made transactions easier and faster. So, to get your police clearance online, simply follow the steps above. Following these steps will ensure a smooth process and a positive outcome.