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All You Need To Know About S-Pass In Singapore


Singapore is considered an attractive destination for foreigners worldwide who want to move to the city-state and start their professional lives. Singapore facilitates such foreigners by offering them various work passes according to their educational qualifications and professional experience. One such work pass is an S-Pass that is suitable for mid-skilled foreigners working in a Singapore company. Read on further to find more information about an S-pass.

What Is An S-Pass?

An S Pass in Singapore is a work pass that allows mid-skilled individuals, belonging to different countries, to work and stay in Singapore. An S pass is offered to associate professionals and technicians (APTs) who work in the chemicals, electronics, construction, marine shipyards, services, pharmaceuticals, aerospace engineering, or other sectors. The S-pass validity period is two years, after which it can further be renewed for another 3 years.

S-Pass Eligibility Criteria

An individual can apply for an S-pass as long as he/she passes certain S-pass requirements. A foreigner of any nationality can apply for an S-pass as long as he/she meets the following criteria:

  • Must have a job offer in Singapore.
  • Must be sponsored by an employer or a company that has the necessary S-pass quota.
  • Must have at least 3 years of work experience.
  • Must hold a tertiary education qualification from an accredited institution.
  • Must earn a fixed monthly salary depending on their age and sector. The S-pass age limit in Singapore and the corresponding salary requirements are listed below:

 

SectorMinimum Salary Requirements For New Applications from 1 Sep 2023 and For Renewals From 1 Sep 2024Minimum Salary Requirements For Renewal Applications From 1 Sep 2023
Financial Services$3,650 for ages 23 and above. Qualifying salary increases as age increases, up to $5,650 at age 45 and above.$3,500 for ages 23 and above, increases with age, up to $5,500 for ages 45 and above.
All other sectors$3,150 for ages 23 and above. The qualifying salary increases as one ages, up to $4,650 at age 45 and above.$3,000 for ages 23 and above, increases with age, up to $4,500 for ages 45 and above.

Documents Required For An S-Pass

A candidate must prepare and submit the following documents with an S-pass application.

  • A scanned copy of the passport page that shows the personal information.
  • The employer’s or sponsor company’s ACRA or business profile.
  • Your letter of consent.
  • Any additional qualification documents and certificates if their authorising institutions were not listed in the application form.
  • If you are from India or China, you need to submit transcripts and mark sheets.
  • The completed S-pass application.

How To Apply For An S Pass?

Usually, your employer or an appointed employment agency will submit the S pass application on your behalf. The application process consists of the following steps:

  • The application has to be submitted through the EP Online portal on the Ministry of Manpower (MOM’s) website.
  • The applicant must provide a letter of consent authorising the employer or an employment agency to apply for the pass on his/her behalf.
  • You do not need to be in Singapore when your S pass application is submitted.
  • The employer or agent logs into the EPOL and fills out the application.
  • He/she will attach all the necessary documents with the application.
  • The next step is to pay the S-pass processing fee.
  • The application response is expected after three weeks.
  • If the application is approved, the agent or employer can download the In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter from EPOL and give it to you. The IPA letter acts as a single-use entry visa, which will allow you to enter Singapore. The IPA letter also intimates whether you are required to undergo a medical check-up when you arrive in Singapore or if any other documents are needed for the pass to be issued.
  • After you receive the IPA letter, you must enter Singapore within 60 days.

How to Get The S-Pass Issued?

Once your S Pass application has been approved, the next step is to get the pass issued. This involves the following steps:

  • You must be in Singapore when applying to issue the S pass.
  • Your employer will have to apply for the issuance of your pass on the EPOL.
  • The employer submits the necessary documents, which include the following:
    • Your latest passport details
    • Medical insurance details
    • Work injury compensation insurance details
    • Your Singapore residence address
    • A local physical address where the S pass will be issued
    • Disembarkation/Embarkation card
    • Any details about your immigration pass or short-term visit pass
    • Your completed medical check-up documents (if applicable)
  • The employer then submits the S pass fee of $100.
  • Once the pass has been issued, your employer will provide you with a notification letter received from the MOM, which will inform you if you need to submit your biometrics.
  • You will need to submit your photograph and fingerprints within one week of issuance of the S pass. You must get an appointment at the MOM Services Centre to register your biometrics.
  • After registering your biometrics, you will receive your S Pass within four days.

S-Pass Quota and Levy Requirements For Employers

Employers who offer S Passes to foreigners are subject to an S-pass quota and must pay the S-pass levy. The S Pass quota allows employers to hire only up to a particular percentage of foreign workers in their companies. The current existing S Pass quota is:

  • For the services sector, employers can hire 10% of the total workforce with foreigners and issue them S passes.
  • For all other sectors, including marine shipyard, manufacturing, construction, and processes, a maximum of 15% of the total workforce can be foreigners with an S pass.

Apart from the quota that employers must adhere to, they also have to pay a monthly foreign worker levy for the S pass holders they hire.  The existing levy rates are:

  • For the services sector, the monthly levy rate is $550.
  • For all other sectors, if the S pass holders make up to 10% of the total workforce, the monthly levy rate is $550. If the S pass holders constitute 10% to 15% of the total workforce, the monthly levy rate becomes $650.

To apply for an S pass, you are advised to engage the services of qualified corporate service providers who can guide you through the process and ensure compliance. Startup Biz Consultants is Singapore’s premium business consultant service provider that can help you with your S Pass application. Contact Startup Biz Consultants for queries and assistance regarding S pass and other work passes in Singapore.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if my S-Pass application gets rejected?

If your S Pass application gets rejected, you will have three months from the date of rejection to file an appeal against it. By logging into the EPOL portal, you can review the reasons for rejection, which are normally given. It is essential that you read and review the reasons for rejection carefully so that all the reservations can be addressed. It is advised to consult a professional business consultant like Startup Biz, who can help you assess the reasons for rejection and guide you regarding the appeal to ensure better chances of success. Only an employer or a third-party authorised agent can log in to the EPOL and submit the appeal against rejection and its necessary documents on your behalf.

How long does an S-Pass application take to process?

The S-pass processing time is approximately 3 weeks after the application has been submitted. If approved, your employer will provide you with the In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter, which you can use to enter Singapore. Once you are in Singapore, you can apply to get the S pass issued to you.

How long can I stay in Singapore after S pass expires?

After an S-pass expires, the pass holder can typically stay in Singapore for between 30 and 90 days.

Can I renew my S Pass?

Yes, your employer can renew your S Pass on your behalf. An S Pass is issued for a period of two years. Your employer can apply for an S-pass renewal six months before its expiration date. The pass can be renewed for another three years. The employer must pay the pass fee again, and your passport should have at least a 7-month validity at the time of applying for renewal of S pass.

Can S-Pass holders bring their families to Singapore?

Yes, an S-Pass holder can bring their family to Singapore through the Dependent Pass or the Long-Term Visa Pass (LTVP). A Dependent pass may be issued for a legally married spouse or unmarried children under the age of 21. An LTVP  is available to parents, dependent children above the age of 21 years, step-children under the age of 21, and a common-law spouse.

Can An S-Pass holder apply for permanent residence in Singapore?

Yes, an S Pass holder can apply to become a permanent resident of Singapore. They can apply through Singapore’s Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA).

When can an S-pass holder apply for PR in Singapore?

S-pass holders need to wait at least 4 years before they can apply for PR in Singapore.