Frequently asked questions about the national ID in the Philippines

With the government’s aim to provide valid identity proof and to better deliver services to all its people, it passed a national ID system for all Filipinos around the world and foreigners residing permanently in the Philippines under Republic Act No. 11055 also known as Philippine Identification System Act. 

It was in 2018 when this was signed by the Philippine President, Rodrigo Duterte, but still many Filipinos are not well knowledgeable about this national ID system. Many questions are being raised regarding it that is why as a help, in this article, we decided to answer some of  the most frequently asked questions about the national ID.

What is a national ID?

A national ID is also referred as the Philippine Identification System ID (PhilSys ID). It is a single and non-transferrable identification card that can be used in all transactions, either in government or private institutions, to prove one’s identity.  Just by looking at the appearance of it, you would notice that it somehow looks like a Unified Multi-Purpose (UMID) ID or a driver’s license. 

Displayed on the identification card are some of the personal information of the card holder such as the complete name, address, sex, date and place of birth, blood type, and marital status. It also shows the facial image of the bearer and a unique PhilSys number provided by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

What are the uses of the national ID?

Just as mentioned, national ID could be used in any transactions may it be in government or private institutions as a valid proof of identity. But most importantly, it makes Filipinos and resident foreigners in the country have easier and faster access and application to various services including financial, education, healthcare, social protection and other benefits offered by the Philippine government. 

According to PSA, the national ID could also be used efficiently in eliminating ineffective and expensive hard copy documents, processes, and credentials in the country. The ID is envisioned as well to  help the government and private sectors particularly businesses in verifying the identity of individuals and prevent identity theft and fraud.

Who can apply for a national ID? 

All Filipinos are qualified to apply for a national ID even those who are dual residents living outside the Philippines and overseas Filipino workers (OFW). Foreigners are also eligible as long as they are a permanent resident of the country.

The acquisition of national ID is not mandatory but government units highly encourage individuals  to apply for it.

What are the requirements in applying for a national ID?

An applicant must present either a birth certificate issued by the PSA with any government-issued document that contains the applicant’s full-name, photo, and signature or thumb mark; a Philippine passport; a UMID card from GSIS or SSS; or a valid student-license permit or Non-Professional/Professional Driver's License released by the LTO.

Is national ID free?

From the registration until its release, the national ID must be free of charge for any applicants. But in case the ID has to be replaced due to damage, loss, or  change of entries, the bearer may be asked to pay a certain amount of fee which is not yet disclosed by the PSA. Exemption to this fee will be possible to card holders who will be able to present a certificate of Indigency.

When and where can I apply for a national ID?

A system that would cater a huge number of applicants for national ID is still being developed but the pre-registration already started last October 12, 2020 only to target population. Registration venues would be identified by the local government units (LGU) since the PSA coordinated them together with the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) to ensure that precautionary measures against COVID-19 will be maintained.

About 32 provinces and 664 municipalities across the country have already started with the process of pre-registration. There are government representatives who knock on various households to collect the necessary data of those who wish to have a national ID before they instruct them to go to registration centers for biometrics.

Who are the priority in national ID registration?

The heads of low-income households are the target population in the national ID registration hence it can be said that they are the priority as of the moment. This is because the government wants to ensure that at least one member of a poor household will have a valid ID enough to open a bank account so that these individuals would be able to receive their financial assistance from the government digitally and without much hassle especially during times of crisis  like the COVID-19 pandemic.

When will the registration for national ID be fully opened to the public?

The PSA disclosed that by 2021 they will open the registration for national ID to the general public so that by 2022 majority of the Filipinos will already be registered. However, as of this writing no specific dates for the registration are not yet announced by the agency.  

Does the national ID have expiration?

The national ID for Filipino citizens has no expiration and is valid for lifetime. However, for resident foreigners, they would have to renew their national ID every year.

Will national ID replace other valid IDs?

The national ID will not replace other IDs that serve a particular action. This means that even if you are a national ID holder, you still have to have other valid IDs if necessary like driver’s license, UMID card, Professional Regulatory Commission ID, or Philhealth ID because the only purpose of the national ID is to have a valid proof of identity so that transactions in government and private institutions will be easier.


  1. Paano po ako makaka pag apply niyan,,

  2. Paano po mag apply ng national I'd po

  3. Panu po Kung meron na po appointment slip.tapos d po makuha sa lugar Kung saan kukuha Ng appointment slip. Sa kadahilanan po lumipat po ng ibang tirahan makukuha pa rin po ito Kung saan lugar ka lumipat?

  4. kelan po kaya matutuloy ang pag papa id may appoinment slip na po kmi e2 sa Bauan

  5. Paano po mag register.?wala po bang website para sa registration?