Types of Work Passes in Singapore, and How to Get Them

Types of Work Passes in Singapore, and How to Get Them

Work Passes


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There are many different types of work pass in Singapore or work permits, and if you are looking to hire and retain the best staff, it helps to understand the options:

Types of work passes in Singapore with their validity and which can be renewed.

Work Pass in Singapore – Employment Pass (EP)

This is the most common type of valid work visa or work pass issued to skilled foreign workers in Singapore, and these are its key characteristics:

  • It’s initially valid for one or two years at the discretion of the Ministry of Manpower (MOM), which issues all work-related visas in Singapore.
  • Companies apply for EPs for specific employees, and they are not portable. If your employee quits, to take another job in Singapore, their EP with you is terminated, and their new employer has to secure a new EP for them.
  • EPs can be renewed multiple times, for up to 3 years at a time. Again, the extended validity is subject to the discretion of the MOM.
  • EP holders sponsor their spouse and children for a Dependent Pass.

If you are looking to apply for a work pass in Singapore for a foreign employee, here is a checklist of the conditions that must be met:

  • You must offer your prospective employee a fixed monthly salary of at least $5,000 per month.
  • Your prospective employee’s employment history must be relevant to the job you offered them
  • Your prospective employee must have the necessary educational qualifications from a recognised university. As part of their EP work pass application, you will need to submit copies of their degree certificate and their course transcripts

Starting in September 2023, Singapore work pass applicants will have to meet a new minimum requirement to be eligible, as the Ministry of Manpower has introduced a new point-based system called the Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS). Read our article on COMPASS and discover how it can affect your work pass application.

Ready for the next step in your career? Secure your Employment Pass with Lanturn!

Work Pass in Singapore – Entre-pass

Harder to get than an EP, the Entre-pass is aimed at serial entrepreneurs, high-calibre innovators or experienced investors that want to operate a business in Singapore that is venture-backed or owns innovative technologies. It is relevant if you:

  1. Work at a venture capital (VC) firm
  2. Are enlisted in a recognised incubator program for startups
  3. Is an investor planning to invest in companies in Singapore

Key characteristics of an Entre-pass:

  • It can be applied before or after the company is registered in Singapore.
  • It is initially valid for one year.
  • Furthermore, it can be renewed for a two-year period as long as the holder remains employed. Subsequent renewals will include a minimum business spending and local hiring quota.
  • Passes are available for their family as long as the company reached the minimum spending and local hiring quota.

    You might also find this article helpful: S Pass vs PEP vs EntrePass: What is the Best Singapore Visa?

Ensure a smooth work pass application for an Entre-pass by ticking off these important boxes:

  • The EntrePass applicant must own more than 30% of the company they plan to work at.
  • The applicant is planning to set up a private limited company in Singapore, or they’re planning to work in a new company that was set up within the last six months.

If you are looking to start your own business, you could be eligible for an EntrePass, if you fulfil the criteria. Get in touch with us and take the first step to building your business in Singapore.

Work Pass in Singapore – S-Pass

Even harder to get than an EntrePass, the S-Pass is designed for younger foreign workers with strong technical skills. Strict quotas apply, should your company need to apply for an S-pass for your employees. The employer will also need to pay a levy to the Ministry of
Manpower for all their S-Pass holders. No more than 18% of its workforce (in the construction, manufacturing, marine shipyard and process sectors) can be S-Pass holders; 10% if you are in the service industry.

Key characteristics of an S-Pass:

  • It is initially valid for up to two years.
  • It is renewable for up to three years.

Applying for a work pass in Singapore? Here are some key things to keep in mind when aiming for an S-pass:

  • Your prospective employee must be offered a monthly salary of at least $3,000 or $3,500 if you are in the financial sector. [Note: This will increase to $3,150 per month (or $3,650 per month in the financial sector) starting 1 September 2024.]
  • They must have an employment history that is relevant to their role.
  • They must have a recognised diploma, and they must submit copies of their certificates and course transcripts for their work pass application.
  • You must provide your prospective employee with medical insurance worth at least $15,000 per year. [Note: Starting from July 1, 2023, employer co-payment will apply to claim amounts above the initial $15,000, and an increased annual claim limit of $60,000 will be implemented for policies moving forward.]

    Related Blog Article: 3 main challenges of getting a Singapore Work Visa approved

Pass for Family in Singapore – Dependents Pass (DP)

A DP is designed for Singapore-based family members of an EP (employment pass), S-Pass or Entre-pass holder.

Key characteristics of a DP:

  • Tied to the Main Work Pass holder. Should the Main Pass be cancelled, the DP will also be cancelled.

DP can be applied for children of Work Pass holders who meet the criteria, allowing them to study in Singapore without a student visa.

Here is a list of some of the key boxes you need to tick to get a DP:

  • You have to be the spouse of the EP, S-Pass or EntrePass holder.
  • For children of the EP, S-Pass or Entre-pass holder, they must be under 21 years of age
  • The EP or S-pass holder must have a fixed monthly salary of at least $6000.

Planning to unlock new opportunities for your family? Secure your Dependant Pass with Lanturn, today!

Pass for Family in Singapore – Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP)

Alternatively, an EP or S-Pass holder can apply for a Long-Term Visit Pass for their:

  • Common-law spouse
  • Unmarried stepchildren (under 21 years of age)
  • Unmarried handicapped children above 21 years of age
  • Parents  – only for those earning a fixed monthly salary of at least $12,000.

Here are the requirements to get an LTVP:

  • You have to meet one of the conditions above.
  • The EP or S-pass holder must have a fixed monthly salary of at least $6000.

Work Pass in Singapore – Tech.Pass

The Tech.Pass is a visa administered by the Singapore Economic Development Board, that allows established tech entrepreneurs, leaders or technical experts from around the world to come to Singapore to perform frontier and disruptive innovations.

Key characteristics of a Tech.Pass:

  • It is initially valid for up to two years.
  • It can be renewed for a two-year period as long as the holder remains employed. Subsequent renewals require the Tech.Pass holder to be in a certain role; as well as reach a minimum salary criteria or minimum business spending and local hiring quota.
  • The Tech.Pass holder can start and operate one or more tech companies, work for multiple companies, and be on the board of directors for one or more Singapore-based companies. 
  • Passes are available for their family as long as the company reached the minimum spending and local hiring quota.

    Related Reference: What is the Singapore Tech.Pass?

Before submitting your work pass application in Singapore, ensure you meet the essential Tech.Pass criteria:

Meet any two of the following conditions:

  • Have a last drawn fixed monthly salary (in the last 1 year) of at least S$20,000.
  • Have at least five cumulative years of experience in a leading role in a tech company with a valuation/market cap of at least US$500mil or at least US$30mil funding raised.
  • At least five cumulative years of experience in a leading role in the development of a tech product that has at least 100,000 monthly active users or at least US$100mil annual revenue.

(Overseas Networks & Expertise) ONE Pass

Last January 2023, the MOM launched a new customised work pass in Singapore for talented individuals in the field of:

  • Arts and Culture
  • Business
  • Sports
  • Research and Academia

The ONE Pass is available to individuals of any nationality, whether they are existing pass holders or from overseas, as long as they are able to meet the qualification criteria. The pass allows its holders to have the freedom to work for several companies at once or have their own startup while being a shareholder. Read our informative article on ONE Pass and its requirements to learn all the details about how to obtain this new personalised work pass in Singapore.

Seize the opportunity to take your career to new heights, and acquire your ONE Pass with Lanturn today!

Streamline Your Visa and Immigration Process with Lanturn

Navigating the complexities of work passes and visas in Singapore can be challenging. At Lanturn, we specialize in providing comprehensive corporate services, including expert guidance on work pass applications and compliance. We stay updated with the latest regulations from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) to ensure a smooth and hassle-free experience.

Discover how our tailored solutions can simplify your visa and immigration journey.

Contact us today for a personalised consultation on the best work pass for you.

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