Laws, Regulations, Enforcement and a low profile

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Posted

A number of topics have come up where there is confusion between what is legal, what is condoned, what is allowed, what laws are enforced, and why we keep a low profile.

I will start with a few that I know of and people can add to them.  This is Philippines and the laws have many grey area that only seem to be enforced when people become too obvious about breaking them.

Habal Habal:  It is illegal to hire yourself out as a motorcycle rider taking people on the back seat for a fee.  And yet it is done every day.  There are certain areas and times where the police will send the habal habal drivers away but for the most part it is condoned.

Ukay Ukay store:  It is illegal to import and sell used clothing in the Philippines but you would never know it.  In most small towns the business thrives.  Even Unitop department store has a section  for imported used clothing. I have never seen that law enforced.

Prostitution:  It is illegal in Philippines, and yet is there anyone living here who does not know where to find the services of one?  Every once in a while there is a crackdown and some poor soul gets locked up.

Fake brands:  It is illegal to sell counterfeit brands in Philippines and yet every Chinese store is filled with fakes.  Every once in a while a store gets raided and someone loses all their stock.

Helmets on a motorcycle:  It is illegal to ride without a helmet but that is only enforced in selected areas.

I could go on.  I could provide links.  But each person is free to do their own research on what the law says and what the enforcement is.  NOTE that I do not even begin to mention laws that are supposed to be enforced but corruption comes into play to facilitate the breaking of laws..  That is an area forbidden on this forum.

So what it the commonality between all these laws?  IMHO the people who keep a low profile and do not bring unwanted attention to themselves, and do not piss off high positioned Filipinos, break these laws every day without any consequence.

The point is:  Foreigners in Philippines break laws every day.  It is almost impossible not to break some obscure law.  The ones who keep a low profile are seldom bothered by law enforcement.  The ones who are highly visible are either jailed or assassinated.  Such is my observation based on the experiences of myself and the other foreigners I have known over the years.

@Jollygoodfellow Please tell me if this topic is too close to breaking the forum rules.  I realize that discussing how to break the laws in Philippines is forbidden.  I don't think that is what I am doing here but I encourage your guidance. 

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Posted
30 minutes ago, Dave Hounddriver said:

keep a low profile

I often feel like I'm just another 'Idiot Abroad,' so I always try to do this. 

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Posted

Excellent post Dave and trust it's added to. 

Slightly off subject but figure worth a mention is, if one is riding a habal habal and the driver, as often the case has no current licence most if not all insurance policies will not cover us in case of accident.. This was confirmed by my company.

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Posted
1 hour ago, Dave Hounddriver said:

@Jollygoodfellow Please tell me if this topic is too close to breaking the forum rules.  I realize that discussing how to break the laws in Philippines is forbidden.  I don't think that is what I am doing here but I encourage your guidance. 

Its OK. As long as we dont get into how to bribe etc as we dont want to be responsible for someone getting into trouble by following someone's advice on illegal matters. :thumbsup:

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