How do we permanently stay in the Philippines?

We got a question from Steven today,

Here’s what Steven had to say:

I’m US Citizen man, Married May 16 2010 in Pangasinan, Returned and processed my Filipina Wife’s papers for Permanent Resident Card for US entry, she is here now. How can I, or we, go back to stay and live there in Philippines? Do I, or we, have to return to US, or leave for some time, after 2 months et,c? Can you please advise and help? Salamat

Here’s what Bob had to say:

Hello Stephen,

As a foreigner, you are not eligible for dual citizenship, the Philippine Dual Citizenship law only applies to people who are former Philippine Citizens who have been naturalized in a different country, they can re-acquire their Philippine Citizenship without losing their naturalization.

Mindanao Bob Total Package

For you, like me, you can, though, get a resident visa to live permanently in the Philippines. You need to apply for a 13(a) Resident Visa, which will be issued to anybody who has a spouse who is a Philippine Citizen. There are a few hoops to jump through, but they are all relatively simple. Once you get your 13(a) Visa, you can stay in the Philippines forever, and never have to leave unless you want to.

Keep one thing in mind, though… since you have only been married a short time, and your wife is not a US Citizen, or a Dual Citizen, if she stays in the Philippines for more than 6 months, she will lose her residence status in the USA, and if she wants to return to the USA she will need to re-apply for a visa. However, if you stay long enough for your wife to become a citizen before returning to the Philippines, she could become a US Citizen, then use the Philippine Dual Citizen law to re-acquire her Philippine Citizenship. At that point, she would be free to come and go from the US and the Philippines as she pleases.

Good luck to you.


  1. Hudson says

    Bob, I have heard from homeland security that she would have to re-enter the US at least once every 12 months, not six months. Where do I find out the “Official” ruling on this?

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