"Do you know how long it takes to get an appointment for the CFO (Commission on Filipinos Overseas) seminar? I don't want a situation where my girlfriend gets her visa and then has to wait a few months to attend the seminar. It seems like the website doesn't allow you to make an appointment without having the visa first."
The CFO Seminar is a specific requirement for immigrating from the Philippines. It's important to point out that there are two different seminars at the CFO offices, and there are four different offices that you can go to in the Philippines. Be sure that you're going to the seminar for fiances and spouses relating to an intermarriage with a foreign citizen. Be sure not to attend the seminar designed for overseas foreign workers if you are entering on a fiance or spousal visa.
The seminar you're looking for is called the Guidance and Counseling Program. And your fiancee, or spouse, should be able to attend that seminar without having the visa in hand. The challenge is that if you attend the seminar without the visa, you're going to have to go back a second time in order to get the certificate placed in the passport, because they will not issue the actual stamp that they put in your passport until you have your visa. And right now, we're seeing that it's taking about nine to 10 business days to schedule the interview online.
Another thing to keep in mind is that there are a limited number of seats at each of the CFO offices. You can go online and check the number of seats available and schedule your appointment there. You can also get a list of all the documents that are required that you're going to need. Some of the documents that you're going to need for the CFO seminar include but are not limited to: two original forms of identification cards; Guidance and Counseling form; If you're married, your certificates of marriage that you can get from the PSA (Philippines Statistics Authority); Potential divorce decrees, annulment paperwork, death certificates, etc.