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First Employment Agency Fined $30,000 for Submitting Work Pass Applications on Behalf of Unlicensed Agent

12 March 2013 

  1. Tay Lian Huay (郑旨云), a 56-year-old Singaporean and the sole proprietor of Sunlight Employment Agency, was convicted today for making work pass applications on behalf of an unlicensed employment agent. Tay is the first person to be convicted of such an offence since the revised Employment Agencies Act (EAA) came into effect in April 2011.
  2. Tay pleaded guilty in the Subordinate Courts to one charge of making a work pass application on behalf of one De Luna Noriza Dancel (Noriza), with another 15 charges taken into consideration for the purposes of sentencing. Tay was fined $30,000 in default to one month’s imprisonment.

    Facts of the Case
  3. Noriza approached Tay for help in submitting 16 work pass applications from 25 August 2011 to 27 October 2011 using Tay's access to the Ministry of Manpower's (MOM) work pass application system. Tay was paid $200 for every successful application made and $30 for every unsuccessful application.
  4. Noriza has already been dealt with under the EAA for operating as an EA without a licence. She was fined $50,000 in default to 20 days' imprisonment on 31 January 2012.

    Advisory from MOM
  5. Under the EAA, it is an offence for any EA personnel of a licensee to submit a work pass application to the Controller of Work Passes on behalf of any person who has not obtained an EA licence. Those convicted face a fine not exceeding $80,000 or a jail term not exceeding two years or to both. In addition, the errant EA will have its licence revoked. An EA which has its licence revoked will also be barred from operating an EA in future.
  6. MOM advises all EA personnel to comply with the EAA and to abide by the Employment Agency Licensing Conditions. EAs should not allow unlicensed EAs to thrive by submitting work pass applications on their behalf to MOM, since access to the work pass application systems is only granted to EAs that are licensed. EAs should carry out their EA activities legally and responsibly.
  7. Members of the public are also advised to use only MOM-licensed EAs for their employment needs. To protect their interests, they are encouraged to verify whether EAs are licensed through the EA Directory on the MOM website at Members of the public who are aware of any individuals or EAs that are operating without a valid licence should contact MOM at Tel: (65) 6438 5122 or email All information will be kept strictly confidential.