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FAQs on Change of Employer (COE) schemes

Employers can use these schemes to hire or transfer Work Permit holders already in Singapore.

Adjustments to Change of Employer requirements in all business sectors 

As of 1 July 2022, there may be Work Permit holders who have passed the 40-21 day window, but wish to continue their employment in Singapore. Would they be able to transfer to a new employer?Show

Such workers may contact the MOM Contact Centre or approach the ACE officers assigned to their respective dormitories for assistance. 

How long will this scheme be in place for?Show

From 1 July 2022, this scheme will be made permanent for all business sectors. MOM will continue to review the 'Change of employer' schemes as and when needed. 

How long will the Work Permit validity be for a worker who is transferred to another employer?Show

The duration of a Work Permit is generally two years, subject to the validity of the worker’s passport, the security bond and the worker’s employment period, whichever is shorter. For sectors that require prior approval, it will also be subjected to the prior approval duration.

I already have a prospective transfer worker in mind for hire. How can I apply for the transfer?Show

For transfers within the respective sectors

More than 40 days to Work Permit expiry

Firms can submit their request via WP Online

Between 21 and 40 days (inclusive) to Work Permit expiry

Firms can submit their request online. Agreement from the current employer is not needed.

Note: Firms in the construction and process sectors can continue to use WP Online to hire existing Work Permit holders within their respective sectors, and whose Work Permits are expiring in 21 to 40 days’ time. There is no need to submit a request online.

Within 20 days to Work Permit expiry

Firms can submit their request directly to MOM using online forms if they are in the:

Agreement from the current employer is required.

Note: All prevailing Work Permit criteria apply for all new applications.

Is this scheme also applicable to Malaysian Work Permit holders?Show

Firms are already allowed to hire Malaysian Work Permit holders who are in Singapore, from any sector. Agreement from the current employer is not required. Hiring companies can continue to use WP Online to hire existing Malaysian Work Permit holders who are in Singapore.

What are the responsibilities of the current and new employer during the transfer of a migrant worker?Show

Please see the table below to find out the current and new employers’ responsibilities and actions needed during the transfer of a migrant worker in the manufacturing, services and marine shipyard industries:

Work Permit (WP) status Who is responsible for worker's upkeep, maintenance and repatriation What you need to do next
Current employer New Employer Current employer New employer Current employer New employer
Live Approved   No action needed. You can get the WP issued one day after the current WP expires.
Expired Approved    No action needed. Get the WP issued now to avoid any overstaying fine. Submit a request if you need more time to get the pass issued. 
Expired IPA withdrawn or cancelled on or before the worker’s WP expires
  You may renew this WP if you have received the renewal notice. Otherwise, please send the worker home.
No action needed.
Expired IPA withdrawn or cancelled after the worker’s WP expires
  No action needed. You need to arrange to send the worker home.

Do I need to be a member of any of the sector associations to be eligible to hire or release Work Permit holders under the scheme?Show

Companies who are not members can also approach the associations in the respective sectors.

Are there any fees involved in this scheme?Show

The hiring company will need to submit a new Work Permit application. The current application fee of $35 per application applies.

The sector associations are providing the facilitation service free of charge for the whole period of the temporary scheme until 30 June 2022.

What are the criteria to get an approval if I intend to hire a transfer worker?Show

All parties (i.e. existing employer, worker and new employer), must agree to the transfer arrangement, unless the worker’s Work Permit is expiring between 40 and 21 days (inclusive).

For all transfers, all other prevailing criteria under the respective sectors (e.g. dependency ratio ceiling, source country controls, maximum employment age, man-year-entitlement prior approval) will still apply.

Can I hire existing non-Malaysian Work Permit holders from other sectors?Show

You can only hire existing non-Malaysian Work Permit holders from your own business sector.
 

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