Human Resources and Immigration

How many kind of working pass in Singapore?

S Pass

Mid-skill foreigners who wish to work in Singapore can apply for an S Pass from the Singapore Ministry of Manpower (MOM). Designed as a work visa for mid-level skilled workers and open to all nationalities, the S Pass applicant is assessed based on a point system that takes into account their educational qualifications, skill types, job types and previous work experience.

Employers of S Pass are subject to a levy and a quota system by MOM, which varies according to industry. This means that employers can only hire a certain percentage of S Pass workers in relation to their total staff.

Applicants can only apply for the pass through their employer or an appointed employment agent. They are also strongly encouraged to do a self-evaluation using MOM’s Self-assessment Tool before applying, which will give an indication of whether they meet the requirements. Do note, however, that each applicant is evaluated on his own merit. Even if an applicant meets all the criteria, there is no guarantee that the application will be successful.

Who is Eligible?

  • To be eligible for S Pass, the applicant must have:
  • A job offer in Singapore that offers a fixed monthly salary of SGD2,200 or above. Older and more experienced applicants are expected to command higher salaries that commensurate with their work experience and skill sets.
  • A degree, diploma or technical/specialist certifications. The certification should include at least 1 year of full-time study.
  • Some years of relevant work experience.

How to File an S Pass Application?

  • Duly filled Singapore S Pass application form
  • Copy of the personal particulars page of your passport
  • A passport-sized photograph taken within the last three months
  • Company’s latest business profile or instant information registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
  • Applicant’s detailed job description
  • Applicant’s educational certificates. Additional documents are required if the applicant is from:
  • India – transcripts and marksheets;
  • China – proof for diploma and above qualifications from sources such as Dataflow China Higher Education Student Information and Career Centre or China Academic Degrees and Graduate Education Information (Education certificates certified by a notary public are not accepted as a form of verification proof).

Entrepreneur Pass

An Employee Pass (EP) or Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass) holder can apply for their spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 to join them in Singapore, provided they meet certain criteria. These family members will be holders of Dependant’s Pass (DP), which allows them to live and study in Singapore. They may also work in Singapore if the main work pass holder is an EP holder, and if their potential employer applies for a Letter of Consent on their behalf. The validity of Dependant’s Pass is tied to the validity of the main work pass holder.

Who is Eligible?
An EP or EntrePass holder who earns at least SGD5,000 a month can bring the following family members using the respective passes:

  • Family Member Pass Type
  • Legally married spouse DP
  • Unmarried children under 21, including those who are legally adopted DP
  • Common-law spouse Long Term Visit Pass
  • Unmarried handicapped children above 21 Long Term Visit Pass
  • Unmarried step-children under 21 Long Term Visit Pass
  • Parents (Only for EP holders earning at least $10,000) Long Term Visit Pass
  • The DP application must also be sponsored by the employer of the main pass holder.
  • If an EP holder’s baby is born in Singapore, the parent must report to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) with the letter issued by the hospital and obtain a 42-day visit pass for the newborn. During this period, the parent can apply for a DP for the newborn.

How to Apply for a DP?

  • A separate DP application must be filed for each eligible family member
  • Applications can be submitted together with the main work pass application or separately
  • The Singapore employer or an appointed employment agent must apply on the DP applicant’s behalf.
  • Applications can be submitted online (7 working days) or manually to MOM (5 weeks).

Documents Required
The documents required for a DP application include:

  • Duly filled DP application form
  • A passport-sized photograph taken within the last three months
  • Copy of the personal particulars page of the candidate’s passport
  • For children who share a passport with their parent, the parent’s personal particulars page must be submitted
  • Documents establishing the applicant’s relationship with the EP or EntrePass holder (such as marriage certificate, birth certificate for children, or adopted certificate for adopted child).

Documents that are not in English are required to be translated and submitted with a copy of the original document.

Employment Pass

As an open economy and a multi-racial country, Singapore welcomes qualified foreign professionals, managers, executives and skilled workers to work and live here. However, there are certain restrictions and criteria that one has to meet before he can apply for a work pass.

Any foreigner who is not a permanent resident and wishes to work in Singapore is required to obtain a work pass from the Singapore Ministry of Manpower (MOM). Among the different categories of work passes, the Employment Pass (EP) allows foreign professionals, managers and executives to work here. Application for EP is open to all nationalities.

With effect from 1 January 2017, foreigners applying for EP need to earn a salary of at least SGD3,600 per month. Older and more experienced applicants are expected to command higher salaries that commensurate with their work experience and skill sets. Applicants also need to meet the following requirements:

  • Have a job offer in Singapore;
  • Work in a managerial, executive or specialised job; and
  • Have acceptable qualifications, usually a good university degree, professional qualifications or specialist skills.

There is no official quota for EPs. Do note, however, that each applicant is evaluated on his own merit by MOM basing on a wide range of criteria such as global and country rankings, and enrolment standards. Even if an applicant meets all of the above criteria, there is no guarantee that his EP application will be successful.

Foreigners who are successful in their application can also apply for Dependant’s Pass for their families to come to Singapore to live with them, provided they meet the criteria set by MOM. They can also apply for Singapore permanent residency after two years if they wish to continue living in Singapore in the long term.

How to File an Employment Pass Application?
The Singapore employer or an appointed employment agent can apply an EP on the candidate’s behalf. Foreign entrepreneurs, CEOs or directors of a Singapore company who wish to relocate to Singapore to manage their locally-incorporated business can apply on their own or through an appointed employment agent.

Applications can be submitted manually or online to MOM. While an online application is processed faster (about 7 to 10 working days), it does not allow attachment of supporting documents. Thus, applicants with physical documents, such as testimonials from previous employers and other documents, need to submit their application manually, which may take up to several weeks to process.