The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) has shared on 3 March 2021 information that Dependant’s Pass (DP) holders will soon need to secure a work pass if they are intending to work in Singapore.

Who will be affected?

Employers and foreign applicants on Dependant’s Pass (DP) status will be impacted.

Background

Currently, eligible Dependant’s Pass (DP) holders tagged to an applicable Employment Pass (EP), EntrePass or Personalised Employment Pass (PEP) may seek employment with local employers through obtaining a Letter of Consent (LOC) from the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).

Implementation

From 1 May 2021, all dependant of foreigners (i.e. Employment Pass (EP), S Pass) will need an applicable work pass (e.g. EP, S Pass, Work Permit, etc.) in order to work in Singapore, instead of a Letter of Consent (LOC).

This latest revision by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is in line with their efforts in building a Singapore core among local employers, where requirements for DP holders who wish to work in Singapore will be aligned with requirements for all other foreigners working in Singapore.

Existing DP LOC holders may continue to work until the expiry of their existing LOC. Thereafter, employers will need to apply for an applicable work pass and comply with the conditions for hiring foreign workers, including the relevant qualifying salary, quotas and levies, should they wish to continue employing the DP holder.

Dependant’s Pass (DP) Holders who are Business Owners

Dependant’s Pass (DP) holders who are business owners may continue to operate their business(es) on a Letter of Consent (LOC) if they meet specified criteria:

1. Sole proprietor, partner or company director of the firm with at least 30% shareholding in the business; and
2. There is at least ONE Singapore citizen or permanent resident in the business earning at least the prevailing Local Qualifying Salary (LQS) and receives CPF contributions for at least three months

Those who do not fulfil the above criteria may continue operating their business based on their existing LOC until it expires, or apply for a one-off extension until 30 Apr 2022, when renewing their DP. After which, in order to continue with operations under the LOC, they will need to meet the criteria stipulated before a renewal of their LOC may be taken forward.

Should DP holders wish to start a new business, they will need to meet the above criteria in order to apply for the LOC.

More details will be released by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) on 1 May 2021.

Santa Fe Analysis

Even though Singapore continues to welcome businesses to grow and expand their operations, the government is also looking to ensure that local employers strengthen their local workforce and build up a strong Singapore core.

The latest revisions with regard to Dependant’s Pass (DP) and Letter of Consent (LOC) considerations is in line with the government’s approach in ensuring a level playing field for experienced local mid-career professionals, managers, executives and technicians.

Employers should take fair hiring seriously and consider local applicants, regardless of their gender, age, etc. The authorities take a very serious view against employers who practice discriminatory hiring in any form.

Should you have any questions, please contact:

Ai Leng Chew
Immigration Manager
Santa Fe Relocation
Singapore
D: +65 6398 3004
E: Aileng.Chew@santaferelo.com

Robert Day
Group Head of Immigration Operations
Santa Fe Relocation
D: +44 7990 021125
Email: Robert.Day@santaferelo.com

To read more immigration updates, click here

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