Wat to know about Singapore Employment Pass? Who can apply for it or how to apply for Singapore EP? Read on.
Singapore’s economy is ranked as being the most open in the world, the most pro-business and one of the least corrupt. It comes as no surprise to note that foreigners flock to Singapore in search of jobs. There are several work visas or work passes available to foreigners seeking employment in Singapore. The Singapore Employment Pass (EP) is one of them. Here’s what you need to know about it.
What is the Singapore Employment Pass (EP)?
The Employment Pass is intended for foreign executives, professionals and managers wanting to work in Singapore. It is not capped by a quota and there is no limit to the number of EPs issued each year but applicants need to meet certain criteria to be eligible for it.
The individual holding the pass can travel outside the country whenever required without the need for an entry visa for each visit.
Singapore EP Eligibility Criteria for Applicants
The Pass must be applied for the employer or an employment agent. The EP is open to candidates of all nationalities. The key eligibility criteria are:
- The individual must have a valid job offer from a company registered in Singapore
- The position must be a specialized role or a managerial/executive position
- The position must offer a salary of at least $4,500 per month. The minimum salary may be higher for candidates who are older and hold more experience
- The candidate must have a degree from an accredited university or professional qualifications or specialized skills
Singapore EP Eligibility Criteria for Employers
While there is no cap on the EP, the sponsor company cannot have too many EP holders as compared to local employees. They must prove that they offered local candidates equal opportunities for the position by advertising the job in the jobsbank and national job portal for at least 28 days before submitting the EP application. In certain cases, you may be exempt from this requirement. This includes
- Companies with less than 10 employees
- If the monthly salary is 20,000 SGD or more
- If the position is a short term one for less than 1 month
- The position is being taken up from an existing employee being transferred from an affiliate, subsidiary or related branch.
- The position is being filled by an intra-corporate transferee
Documents Required for the Employment Pass
An application for an EP must be accompanied by the following documents:
- A copy of the first and last page of the candidate’s passport
- If the candidate has a different name on the passport and other documents, he must also submit
- An affidavit explaining the same or an explanation letter and supporting documents
- Copy of the candidate’s certificates. In certain cases, additional documents may be required. For example:
- India: Mark sheets or transcripts for all college semesters attended
- China: Verified proof of diploma or degree from accredited institutions
- Employer’s company business profile or information registered with the ACRA
- Non-English documents must be uploaded with a translated version in English
The employers are responsible for ensuring that all documents uploaded are genuine.
Employees in food establishments, healthcare, sports, law or representative of overseas companies may need to submit additional documentation.
EP applications for employees in food establishments will need to have a copy of the employer’s food shop license as issued by the SFA or a copy of the application for the same.
Employees in professional services will need to support their applications with documents from the professional bodies regulating their work.
Representatives from overseas companies must support their application with a copy of the approval letter from Enterprise Singapore and a letter from the office headquarters stating the purpose of the application, assignment duration and guarantee for the candidate’s repatriation.
How to apply for an EP?
An application for an EP can be submitted manually or online. Online submissions are processed faster and hence preferred. You can submit your application here.
In the case of online submission, you will get an update on the status as to whether the application has been approved or not in 3 weeks. You can also check the status here. If your application is rejected, you can appeal against the same. There are 2 chances to appeal.
When your application is approved, the candidate and employer will receive a notification email. The candidate will then need to submit his/her biometrics within 2 weeks of the pass being issued. Originals of the candidate’s passport, appointment letter and notification letter must also be shown for verification. The card will be delivered to the candidate within 4 working days of registration and document verification.
EP Application Fees
A fee of $105 must be paid when submitting the application and a fee of $225 must be paid when each EP is issued.
How long is the pass valid?
The Singapore EP is valid for first-time pass holders for up to 2 years. It can be renewed for an additional 3 years. The pass holder can renew the EP up to 6 months before it expires. The duration for which the pass is renewed is not influenced by your passport validity. If you do not renew your pass in time or the renewal is not granted before the EP expires, you will need to apply for a fresh EP.
Getting a Pass for EP holder’s family
EP holders earning at least $6,000 per month can get passes for their dependents. They can apply for a dependent pass for their legally married spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 years.
Common-law partners, unmarried step-children under the age of 21 years and unmarried handicapped children over the age of 21 years are eligible for a long-term visit pass. To be eligible to apply for a long-term visit pass for parents, the EP holder must earn a minimum of $12,000 per month.
An application for dependent passes and long-term visit passes can be submitted by the employer along with the application for an Employment Pass or separately.
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