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Apply for an Employment Pass

You can apply for an Employment Pass online. After submitting an application you can check the application status online.

At a glance

Who can apply

Employer or appointed employment agent (EA)

Note: From 1 August 2014, you may be required to advertise your job opening on the Jobs Bank before you can apply for an Employment Pass.

How much it costs

When you submit the application:

  • $70 for each pass

When the pass is issued:

How long it takes

If you apply online: within 3 weeks for most cases.
If you apply manually: within 8 weeks for most cases.
Documents required Find out what you’ll need.
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Use the Self-Assessment Tool to check if your candidate qualifies. You should not apply if the Self-Assessment Tool shows that your candidate does not qualify.

These are the steps you’ll take to apply:

Step Who does this Result
Submit an application Employer or EA In-principle approval letter or rejection letter
Get the pass issued Employer or EA Notification letter
Register fingerprint and photo (if required) Candidate Acknowledgment of card delivery
Receive the card Authorised recipients or candidate Employment Pass card
Return the old card Employer Use EP Online to confirm MOM received the old card

Note:

  • If a candidate is in Singapore with a visit pass that will expire before the Employment Pass is issued, we won’t be able to extend the visit pass.
  • You should only bring in candidates when the pass is approved. They don’t need to be in Singapore when you apply and we won’t be able to extend their visit pass.

Submit an applicationShow

You can submit an application using EP Online.

If you are an overseas company without a Singapore-registered office, you need to apply through a local sponsor. This application must be made manually.

Submit online

Processing time: within 3 weeks. Some cases will take more time.

To submit an application online:

  1. Get a written consent to apply for Employment Pass from the candidate.
  2. Log in to EP Online to fill out the application and upload the required documents.
  3. Pay the $70 fee for each application. You can pay by GIRO, Visa, MasterCard or eNets Debit.
  4. Check your application status after 3 weeks. It may take longer if additional information is required.
  5. If the pass is approved, log in to EP Online and print the in-principle approval (IPA) letter.

Send the pass holder’s copy of the IPA to the candidate. It has a pre-approved single-entry visa for the candidate to enter Singapore.

The IPA gives you 6 months to bring the candidate to Singapore and get the pass issued. It also states whether the candidate needs to go for a medical examination, which can be done after arrival in Singapore.

Submit manually

Processing time: within 8 weeks. Some cases will take more time.

Only for companies not registered in Singapore:

  1. Get a written consent to apply for Employment Pass from the candidate.
  2. Complete the Employment Pass Application Form (for sponsorship cases) and include the supporting documents mentioned in the form.
  3. Submit the completed application and supporting documents over the counter at any SingPost branch.
  4. Pay the $70 fee for each application. You can pay by cash, NETS or CashCard. Keep the payment advice slip given to you as proof of your submission.
  5. Check the application status online 3 weeks after submission.

It takes around 8 weeks to process the application. It may take longer if additional information is required.

If the pass is approved, we’ll post the in-principle approval (IPA) letter to the sponsoring company.

Send the pass holder’s copy of the IPA to the candidate. It has a pre-approved single-entry visa for the candidate to enter Singapore.

The IPA gives you 6 months to bring the candidate to Singapore and get the pass issued.

Get the pass issuedShow

When: Within 6 months of in-principle approval

Processing time: Immediate

The candidate must be in Singapore when you request for the pass to be issued.

To get the pass issued:

  1. Log in to EP Online to make the request and submit the supporting documents (see what you will need).
  2. Provide a home or office address where you can receive the card.
  3. Nominate up to 3 authorised recipients to receive the card, and provide their NRIC, FIN or passport number, mobile numbers and email address.
  4. Pay the fees using GIRO, or eNETS credit or debit:
  5. When the pass is issued, print the notification letter.

The notification letter:

  • Should be given to the candidate. It allows them to start work and travel in and out of Singapore while waiting for the pass card.
  • States if the candidate needs to register to have fingerprints and photo taken.
  • Is valid for 1 month from the date of issue. If you need to extend it because of other travel plans, submit the request form.

What you’ll need

You will need the following information for issuing the pass:

  • Candidate’s passport details.
  • Details of the candidate’s current Short Term Visit Pass or immigration pass.
  • Candidate’s residential address in Singapore.
  • A local address where we can deliver the card.
  • Contact details of at least one authorised recipient to receive an SMS or email alert with delivery details.

You may also need to submit PDF copies of these documents:

  • Disembarkation/Embarkation card (immigration white card).
  • Completed medical examination form or health declaration form.
  • Completed declaration form attached with the candidate’s in-principle approval letter.
If the medical report is not ready, you can extend the candidate’s Short Term Visit Pass. Submit your request and a copy of the doctor’s confirmation using iSubmit. Under request type, choose option 8.

Register fingerprints and photoShow

When: Within 2 weeks after pass is issued (if required)

Check the notification letter for whether the candidate needs to register fingerprints and photo. First-time candidates or those whose last registration was more than 5 years ago will need to register.

For registration, you must make an appointment for the candidate to visit the Employment Pass Services Centre (EPSC). The candidate has to register within 2 weeks after the pass is issued.

The candidate should bring along these documents for the appointment:

  • Original passport
  • Appointment letter
  • Notification letter
  • Documents listed in the IPA letter and notification letter

Receive the cardShow

When: 4 working days after registration or document verification

We will deliver the card to the given address 4 working days after the candidate registers and gets documents verified at EPSC.

If the candidate does not need to register, we will deliver the card 4 working days after checking the documents.

The authorised recipients will get an SMS or email with the delivery details at least 1 working day before the delivery.

If card delivery fails

After two unsuccessful deliveries, you’ll have to collect the card at EPSC.

The candidate or an authorised person can collect it 3 working days after the second attempted delivery. They don’t need an appointment.

Bring along these documents for the visit:

Return the old cardShow

If the candidate holds an existing pass for work or long-term stay in Singapore, you need to return the old card.

For a work pass or long term pass issued by MOM, post it back to the Work Pass Division, Ministry of Manpower, 18 Havelock Road, Singapore 059764. You can use the “card return” function in EP Online to:

  • Check if we have received the card.
  • Tell us why you are unable to return the card.

For a Special Pass or long term pass issued by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA), return it to ICA. These include the Long Term Visit Pass and Student Pass.

You don’t need to return a Disembarkation/Embarkation card (immigration white card) to ICA.

Last Updated: 17 November 2017