How can DP and LTVP holders work in Singapore?
Are you a Dependant’s Pass (DP) or Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP) holder and are keen to work in Singapore? Find out the conditions that you will need to meet in order to do so.
Singapore’s reputation as a thriving regional business hub draws many professionals – and their families - from all over the world to its shores. In December 2017, Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) reported that as many as 187,700 foreign professionals were working in Singapore under an Employment Pass (EP).
Singapore work visas such as the Employment Pass, EntrePass and Personalised Employment Pass offer its holders flexibility and freedom to work in Singapore.
The passes offered to the family members of Singapore work visa holders, namely the Dependant’s Pass (DP) and the Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP), offer the flexibility to live, go to school and travel freely in Singapore. However, the flexibility of these two passes does not extend to working in Singapore.
If you’re a DP or LTVP holder and would like to legally work in Singapore, here are two options that you may consider:
Option 1: Apply for a Pre-approved Letter of Consent (PLOC)
A new scheme by Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM), the Pre-approved Letter of Consent (PLOC) is a document that entitles its holder the legal right to work in Singapore. The difference between the PLOC and the LOC is that while the latter requires you to have already obtained a job offer before you can apply for it, the PLOC does not require you to find a job first.
You will be given the option of applying for a PLOC during the application or renewal of your LTVP/LTVP+ with the ICA. The duration which the PLOC remains effective is the same as your LTVP/LTVP+. That is, should your LTVP/LTVP+ expires or is cancelled, the PLOC will also cease to be valid.
However, in the event that you are not eligible for a PLOC and you still wish to work in Singapore, the next option would be to apply for a Letter of Consent (LOC) through your prospective employer.
You are eligible for a PLOC if you have the following:
- Spouse or unmarried child of a Singapore citizen or permanent resident
- Has been issued with LTVP/LTVP+ with the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA)
Apply for a PLOC if you:
- Want the flexibility to find work in Singapore at your own schedule
Option 2: Obtain a Letter of Consent (LOC)
Issued by Singapore's Ministry of Manpower (MOM), the Letter of Consent (LOC) is a document that entitles its holder the legal right to work under a Singapore-registered company.
There are no quotas on the number of employees a Singapore company can hire under LOCs, which makes LOC holders an attractive employment prospect to Singapore employers.
You are eligible for an LOC if you have the following:
- A DP tied to an Employment Pass holders, EntrePass or Personalised Employment Pass (PEP) holder that is valid for at least 3 months from the date of application
- A LTVP tied to a Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident (PR) that is valid for at least 3 months
- A confirmed job offer from a Singapore employer
The application of an LOC is done by the employer or an appointed employment agent on behalf of the DP or LTVP holder. You will need to give written consent to your employer or agent in order to apply for an LOC.
LOC applications take up to 3 weeks to process in most cases, and successful applicants may start work upon receiving their LOCs. The duration of an LOC is tied to the duration of your DP or LTVP.
Additional documents may be required for DP and LTVP holders who are:
- Regional representatives of overseas companies
- Healthcare professionals (dentists, doctors, nurses)
- Football players and coaches
- Pharmacists and therapists (occupational, physio, radiation, speech)
- Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners
LOC applications are considered on a case-by-case basis by MOM, considering the individual applicants’ experience and qualifications, as well as the viability and necessity of the Singapore employer to hire LOC applicants.
Apply for the Letter of Consent if you:
- Have obtained a job offer and would like to start work in Singapore as soon as possible
- Are not holding a directorial role, or serving as a shareholder in the company you work
- Want to work in Singapore without a minimum salary requirement, as well as additional qualifications (other than those directly required by the Singapore employer)
Option 3: Obtain an Employment Pass (EP)
DP and LTVP holders can also apply for their Singapore Employment Pass (EP) apart from that of their family member who holds the main Singapore work visa.
An Employment Pass offers more flexibility, including the ability to hold directorial roles in a Singapore-registered company.
A DP or LTVP holder who has an EP also has the freedom to renew and cancel it apart from that of their family member who they are dependent on. If the Singapore work visa of their family member expires, they will not be affected and can still legally work in Singapore.
However, it is important to note that there are more stringent requirements that DP or LTVP holders need to meet in order to obtain an EP successfully. They have to:
- Draw a minimum salary of S$3,600 a month. This rate typically applies to fresh graduates, with higher salaries required for professionals with more experience.
- Possess relevant professional experience
- Possess a tertiary degree from a reputable university. Strong professional experience with high salaries may compensate for a lack of formal education
To apply for an EP, your employing Singapore company will need:
- An EP Application Form 8, duly endorsed by the employing Singapore company
- A copy of your latest resume and relevant educational certificates
- A copy of the personal particulars page of your passport
- A copy of the business profile of the employing Singapore company
- A detailed description of your job duties
- A detailed description of the activities and/or products of the employing Singapore company
Most EP applications are processed within 3-5 weeks. However, EP applications for professionals in specialised industries such as financial services, medical services, law, media and sports may take a longer time to process, as additional permissions are required from the Singapore regulatory associations governing these professions to grant EPs. New EPs are granted for up to 2 years and are renewable. Click here for more information about the Employment Pass.
It can also be a challenge to put together the right documents to apply for an EP, that is why when you engage a qualified corporate service provider, it can help to make the entire process significantly easier.
Apply for an EP if you:
- Want more flexibility in your career, including the option of staying on beyond the validity of your family member’s work visa
- Hold a directorial role, or want to start your own company