The Singapore Employment Pass (EP) renewal is typically conducted by the foreign worker’s employer or employment agent.
Our thoughts on EP renewal
Singapore EP renewal is not merely an administrative procedure. You should be prepared with the proper documents to renew your EP. You control company-level finance and contracts if your EP is under your own business. It is advantageous because you can decide on the amount of capital you want to inject into the company as well as your own salary.
If your EP is in the hands of an employer, be sure to discuss with them. Alternatively, you can take your own EP application into your own hands by setting up your own company. Once approved, finding a contractual type arrangement with your employer will be next. A lot fewer HR administrative matters your employer has to navigate, and a lot more flexibility on your part. The new point-based COMPASS framework will kickstart in September 2023 for EP renewals. You can read more about them here.
Still, having doubts on the benefits of an employment pass in Singapore? Check it out on our website for more information.
If you face any challenges when renewing your EP application, it is recommended to engage a licensed employment agent to assist with the renewal.
When can I renew my Employment Pass and Dependent Pass?
A Singapore Employment Pass renewal can be done up to 6 months before the pass expiry date. It is advisable to renew the pass 6 months prior to expiry as MOM may take longer to assess the renewal application. Do not fret, as you will not lose the remaining days in your current pass even though you proceed to renew it earlier.
DPs linked to the EP can be renewed once the EP renewal is approved. For cases where the EP renewal outcome is still pending, the DP can be renewed at least one (1) month before the expiry date.
MOM will auto-approve the application with extra 1-month extension to allow MOM officers more time to conclude the EP renewal outcome. The DP renewal will be submitted once EP renewal is approved, to ensure the duration is tied to the main pass holder.
Additional Documents Required for Employment Pass Renewal
Over the past months, even though the company has been well established in Singapore for more than 2 years, MOM will still likely to request for supporting documents to ensure the company is still well equipped to continue hiring foreign employees via EP and the candidate of choice is still well deserving of the position.
Some of these documents include:
1. Candidate’s latest 3 months payslips and personal bank statements
2. Candidate’s latest Notice of Assessment from IRAS
3. Employing Company latest Notice of Assessment from IRAS
4. Employing Company photo and tenancy agreement
5. Proof of Employing Company ongoing business (Important!)
Timeline and process for EP renewal
Steps to apply Singapore Employment Pass renewal:
Day 1 to 2: Retrieve Singapore Employment Pass renewal application draft and furnish it to client for update and confirmation (2 days)
Day 3 to 4: Once amend the information (if any), check & submit Employment Pass renewal (By Authorised Paul Hype Page EP agent) (2 days)
Day 5 to 30: Upon submission of the Singapore Employment Pass renewal application, the standard timeline for MOM to assess the renewal application is 1 to 3 weeks. They will reply with the outcome of the application or if additional supporting documents are needed
Day 31 to 60: If additional documents are requested, MOM will require a further 1 to 3 weeks to assess the additional documents submitted. Some cases might take up to 6 weeks for them to verify the information given.
Day 60: Approval application – In-Principle Approval (IPA) /Medical check-up (if required) and Card issuance (at Paul Hype Page & Co office)
What do I do once my Singapore Employment Pass renewal application is approved?
Step 1: The card issuance will be done electronically via our in-house employment agency. We will need to submit the declaration and medical check-up form (if any) to ensure the candidate is physically present in Singapore. Also, a proof of picture with the local newspaper showing the current date.
The IPA letter is valid for three months starting from the approval date.
Step 2: If medical examination is needed, it can be conducted in the applicant’s home country through an established clinic or hospital or in Singapore. Most clinics in Singapore can provide a medical examination and report within one or two working days.
Medical examination must be done before the card issuance is submitted online.
Step 3: Once candidate is in Singapore for card issuance, we will need the documents/info below:
Advise: What should I do if I am unable to return to Singapore due to border restrictions on time for the card issuance?
We may assist in requesting MOM to extend the validity of the In-Principal Approval (IPA) letter once. An extension of two (2) months will be given from the initial date. However, it is subject to approval by MOM.
If the IPA has been extended, but the pass holders are still unable to return to Singapore for the card issuance, the passes will be cancelled. Once border restriction is eased, the employing company will need to put in a new application again.
Step 4: Once our agent has submitted the card issuance online, we will then furnish the candidate a notification letter which will grant the candidate to stay and continue working in Singapore. The notification letter will also indicate if the candidate may re-use their existing work pass and check the updated information via the SGWorkPass app or if they need to re-issue their card. We will assist in booking an appointment if the candidate needs to re-issue their work pass with the Employment Pass centre.
If you are ready to start your Employment Pass application, click here to fill up the Employment Pass Questionnaire. Our in-house agent will help you with this process.
You may also use the Self Assessment Tool (SAT) to check the Employment Pass or S Pass eligibility of your candidacy before you apply or appeal.
- Job scope and qualifications do not match. Educational profile and experience should be aligned with the job requirements.
- The applicant’s previous employer did not hire locals or had an imbalanced ratio of locals to foreign employees in the company. This shows a lack of contribution to Singapore and a lack of trust in the local economy. It also casts a poor light on the company with regard to its global standing.
- A local can easily take the job which the applicant is pursuing. In such a case, there is no need for a foreign talent as there are enough locals that can already do the same job.
- Criteria such as academic and salary qualifications are not fulfilled to an appropriate level.
- The duration of the applicant’s previous job is less than two years and the applicant changed job without any acceptable reason. The Ministry of Manpower takes a dim view of job-hoppers and applicants with questionable work records.
After applying for an EP online, the following image can be seen:
Applicants’ EP status can be divided into three categories. An applicant’s EP application status can be pending, rejected, or approved.
If the applicant’s EP status is “approved”, the MOM has already approved the application. The applicant may now proceed to make an appointment with the MOM to receive the EP and activate it.
There are several advantages which are provided to applicants for as well as holders of an Employment Pass which do not exist for those of other Singapore work visas.
- S Pass holders are not permitted to either own or be the director of a company. They are also barred from entering certain lines of work.
- Personalized Employment Pass holders have a much higher salary requirement than do Employment Pass holders. They too are not permitted to enter specific lines of work.
- EntrePass holders are required to fulfil specific criteria related to their status as an entrepreneur, innovator, or investor. None of these additional requirements are applicable with regard to the EP. Thus, it is only to be expected that the EP is the Singapore work visa most commonly selected by foreigners.
Since August 2014, the Ministry of Manpower has required companies that intend to hire EP holders to first advertise the relevant position in the Singapore Workforce Development Agency’s Jobs Bank. However, certain exceptions apply.
The following positions are exempted:
- Jobs in firms with fewer than 25 employees
- Jobs that pay more than S$12,000 per month
- Intra-corporate transferees (i.e. candidates holding senior positions / professionals with advanced levels of expertise)
- Short-term positions (less than one month)
Sometimes, an Employment Pass application is rejected by the authorities. If such has happened to you, we will investigate why the outcome was so. We will consider the Ministry of Manpower’s reasons, establish a firm appeal in your defence, address the issues raised, and provide any needed documents on request.
- Appeals take at least three weeks to be completed, though this duration may sometimes be longer.
- Any appeal must be submitted within three months of the official rejection. After this time period, a new application must be submitted.
According to our Singapore Employment Pass Guide, it is wise to make use of the Self-Assessment Tool (SAT), an online tool offered by Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM). In the guide, we have listed important factors to consider when applying for a Singapore Employment Pass.
The SAT serves as a gauge of one’s chances of receiving an Employment Pass; it is not an exact means of determining either approval or rejection of such an application.. Applicants and employers can check whether they meet the specific requirements to obtain the proper work passes. The SAT is reliable and has as a high level of accuracy. The SAT will aid in checking one’s eligibility based on nationality, education profile, working background or experience, and salary profile.
Should the SAT results indicate that an applicant is not eligible, the applicant is advised to abandon the application because the application may be outright rejected. However, the SAT is merely a reference and does not depict actual results; the application will nevertheless be thoroughly reviewed by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) authorities. The Self-Assessment Tool exists on the MOM’s website.