Quick Glance At Visas & Work Passes
Employment Pass (EP) is a type of work visa issued to foreign professional employees, managers, and owners/directors of Singapore companies. EP is normally issued for 1-2 years at a time and renewable thereafter. An EP enables you to work and live in Singapore, and travel in and out of the country freely without applying for Singapore entry visas. EP holders are eligible to apply for Singapore permanent residence in due course.
- Salary threshold is S$3,600 per month
- Applicant’s educational qualifications and work experience are also key considerations for the MOM in granting the EP
- Wish to establish a business in Singapore and relocate to Singapore to run the business. The proposed business idea must be entrepreneurial and innovative in nature and able to create local employment.
- Have entrepreneurial or relevant background
- Plan to register your business as a Singapore private limited company and not as sole proprietorship or partnership
- Have not yet incorporated your company, or the company is not more than 6 months old at the time of application
- Plan to have at least 30% shareholding in the proposed business
- Company will have a minimum paid-up capital of S$50,000
- Sponsored by a well-established Singapore-registered company or are able to furnish a Banker’s Guarantee of $3,000 issued by a Singapore-based bank upon of application
- Company is receiving monetary funding or investment of at least S$100,000 from a third-party Venture Capitalist (VC) or angel investor accredited by a Singapore Government agency
- Company holds an Intellectual Property (IP) that is registered with a recognised national IP institution.
- The company has on-going research collaboration with an institution recognised by Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) or Institutes of Higher Learning in Singapore
- Company is an incubatee at a Singapore Government-supported incubator
- PEP pass holders are not allowed to start their own business in Singapore, i.e. they cannot be employed by their own company or engage in any entrepreneurial activities.
- PEP holder can be a salary-drawing director of a company as long as the company is not owned by them.
- The eligibility requirements for PEP are more stringent than the Employment Pass. See eligibility section below for more details.
- PEP holders must earn an annual fixed salary of SGD $144,000 for each calendar year of holding the PEP card, which can only be granted to each applicant for a one-time maximum period of 3 years.
- The main advantage of PEP is that a PEP holder can switch jobs without re-applying for a visa as long as the holder is not unemployed for longer than six months. During those six months, the PEP holder can stay in Singapore without having to apply for any other type of stay visas.
- PEP holders are eligible to bring their spouses and children below 21 years old on Dependant’s Passes, and they can also bring their parents on Long Term Visit Passes.
The S Pass is for mid-skilled employees who earn a fixed monthly salary of at least $2,200 (w.e.f. 1 July 2013). S Pass applicants are assessed based on employer’s quota eligibility and applicant’s qualifications. Instead of a degree, a technical diploma is acceptable for this kind of work pass.
- Validity: S Pass is initially issued for 1-2 years (at the discretion of authorities) and is renewable after that as long as the applicant continues to be employed by the employer.
- Eligibility: Mid-level technical staff.
- Quota System: Yes. For more details on quota, see Computation of Company’s Quota Balance.
- Permanent Residence Eligibility: S pass holders are eligible to apply for PR; however, they may have to wait at least 4-5 years and have a stable job history in Singapore.
- Categorisation of passes
- Dependant’s Pass applicable for;
- Legally married spouse
- Unmarried children under 21 years of age including those legally adopted
- Long Term Visit Pass applicable for;
- Common-law spouse
- Unmarried handicapped children above 21 years of age
- Unmarried stepchildren under 21 years of age
- Parents of only those employment holders earning at least $10,000
- Dependant’s Pass applicable for;
- A minimum monthly salary of at least $5,000
- Must hold an employment pass
- Application filing procedure
- The employer will need to submit a separate application for each family member.
- The application can be submitted together with the Employment Pass application and separately.