MANILA - The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) suspended a recruiter from collecting fees higher than what was allowed by law.

The suspension was ordered against Lexus Incorporated after 20 Filipino factory workers the agency deployed to Taiwan filed separate complaints of overcharging at the Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) Labor Affairs in Kaohsiung on July 2014.

POEA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac said the workers alleged that Lexus charged each of them placement fees ranging from P90,000 to P130,000. They signed employment contracts with a monthly salary of NT$18,000 to NT$19,000 or equivalent to about P28,000. The agency also did not issue the appropriate receipts for their payment.

Cacdac said a recruitment agency is authorized to collect from its hired workers an amount equivalent to one month salary, exclusive of documentation and processing costs.

Section 2 b, Rule 1, Part 6 of the 2002 POEA Rules and Regulations prohibits "charging or accepting directly or indirectly any amount greater than that specified in the schedule of allowable fees prescribed by the Secretary, or making a worker pay any amount greater than that actually received by him as a loan or advance."

Cacdac advised Filipino job seekers to avoid licensed recruiters that continue to defy the government’s placement fee policy. Source:

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