EP Renewal Dilemma? Gain Clarity with Our Expert Insights

EP Renewal Dilemma? Gain Clarity with Our Expert Insights

In Singapore, renewing an Employment Pass (EP) is a critical step for professionals wishing to continue their careers in this dynamic economic hub. This process, essential for maintaining one’s legal employment status, requires careful attention to ensure timely submission and adherence to the regulatory framework. It’s a straightforward procedure that, when navigated correctly, secures one’s professional pathway and alignment with Singapore’s employment laws.

The importance of a timely EP renewal extends beyond mere legality; it is a testament to an individual’s valued contribution and integration into the local economy. The advent of the COMPASS requirements introduces a nuanced layer to the renewal process. This points-based system mandates a thorough understanding of new benchmarks, aiming to align foreign expertise with the strategic priorities of Singapore’s evolving economic landscape.

Renewal Process Overview

A. When to Renew

For those holding an Employment Pass (EP) in Singapore, it’s advisable to begin the renewal process up to six months before the current pass expires. This preparatory window allows for a thorough and unhurried approach to renewal. It’s important to note, specific types of Work pass holders might have to observe particular timelines, reflecting the distinct requirements across various professional sectors.

B. Who Can Renew

An EP renewal can only be initiated by the employer or an appointed employment agent (EA). This ensures the process is managed by parties well-versed in the necessary legal and procedural requirements, facilitating a smoother renewal experience.

C. Duration and Costs

The duration of a renewed EP can extend up to three years, depending on the decision of the issuing authority. The costs associated with the renewal process are as follows:

  • Application cost: $105
  • Issuance: $225 or $255 (inclusive of $30 multiple journey visa)

These fees are integral to ensuring the regulation and management of foreign professionals’ employment in Singapore.

D. Processing Time

The processing time for EP renewal through the myMOM Portal can vary. While most applications would take around 10 working days to be processed, it’s important to note that this timeline may vary depending on the workload and requests of the reviewing officer. Applicants and their employers are encouraged to factor in this processing period to avoid any disruptions to the employment continuity. Staying updated on the status of the application via the portal is crucial for a smooth renewal process.

Importance of Renewing Early

A. Impact of Renewing Early

  • Continuity of Work Pass Validity: Initiating the renewal of your Employment Pass (EP) well before the due date does not shorten the validity period of your current pass. This approach ensures no loss of remaining days.
  • Duration of Renewed Pass: Importantly, the new pass’s validity starts only after the current pass expires. This policy facilitates a smooth transition, allowing for uninterrupted employment.

B. Consequences of Missing the Renewal Deadline

  • Lapse in Validity of Pass: If the renewal deadline is missed, applying for a new EP becomes necessary, which can be more complex and time-consuming.
  • Maintain Legal Employment Status: Those with EP (Sponsorship) must follow specific guidelines if they miss the deadline, which might involve direct communication with the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) for the next steps. Ensuring timely renewal is essential to avoid these additional steps.

Renewal Criteria

A. Criteria Based on the Expiration Date

Before 1 September 2024:

  • Salary: Applicants must meet the minimum EP qualifying salary, which varies based on age and sector. For most sectors, it starts at $5,000 and increases with age up to $10,500 for those aged 45 and above. The financial services sector begins at $5,500 and rises similarly with age up to $11,500.
  • Employment Role: There can be changes in the title or designation at the point of renewal.
  • Qualifications: Hold acceptable academic or professional qualifications, such as a reputable university degree, professional certifications, or specialised skills.

From 1 September 2024:

  • Salary: Still required to meet the EP qualifying salary, which will be revised to at least $5,600 for most sectors and at least $6,200 for the financial services sector for new applications.
  • Employment Role: Remain employed in a managerial, executive, or specialised position with the same employer.
  • COMPASS: Pass the Complementarity Assessment Framework (COMPASS), designed to assess the applicant’s overall contribution to the Singaporean workforce.
  • Salary Exemption: Individuals earning a fixed monthly salary of at least $22,500 are exempt from the COMPASS evaluation.

B. Verification of Qualifications

  • Initial Verification: Once an applicant’s qualifications are verified for their EP, there’s no need for re-verification for renewal or when changing employers within Singapore.
  • Application Stage: During the initial EP application process, a prompt for qualification verification might occur to ensure that all employment eligibility criteria are met.

Renewal Procedure

The process for renewing your Employment Pass (EP) in Singapore is streamlined and accessible, ensuring that professionals can continue their contributions to the economy without interruption. Below is a detailed guide on how to navigate this process effectively.

A. How to Renew

Renewing your EP is a straightforward process, primarily facilitated through the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) online platform.

myMOM Portal:

  • Access the myMOM Portal to begin the renewal application.
  • Log in with your credentials to submit your renewal application directly through the portal.

For EP (Sponsorship) Holders:

  • The renewal procedure for EP (Sponsorship) holders involves a few additional steps.
  • Download the EP (Sponsorship) renewal application form from the portal.
  • Complete the form digitally and submit it along with the required supporting documents through the online form.
  • The outcome of the renewal application will be sent to the contact person mentioned in the form.

B. Renewal Timeline

The renewal timeline is designed to offer flexibility while ensuring that all legal and procedural requirements are met in a timely manner.

It’s recommended that you initiate the renewal process well before your current pass expires. The myMOM Portal provides a facility to check the earliest date you can apply for renewal based on your pass expiry date.

C. Upon Renewal

Once your renewal application is processed, the next steps are crucial to ensure your continued legal employment status in Singapore.

In-Principle Approval (IPA):

  1. Successful applicants will receive an IPA letter detailing the next steps.

Getting the Pass Issued:

  1. The instructions in the IPA letter must be followed meticulously to have your renewed pass issued.
  2. To avoid penalties, it is critical to have the pass issued before either the IPA or your current pass expires.
After Pass Issuance | Xignam

After Pass Issuance

After issuing your renewed Employment Pass (EP), it’s essential to follow the instructions in the notification letter meticulously. This ensures compliance with the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) regulations and secures your legal employment status in Singapore.

A. Instructions for Pass Holders Upon Receiving the Renewed Pass

The accompanying notification letter will outline the necessary actions upon receipt of your renewed pass. It’s important to read this letter carefully to understand your next steps.

  • Continue Using the Existing Card: If the letter instructs you to keep using your existing card, do so. 
  • Getting a New Card: Should the letter direct you to obtain a new card, you must cut the existing card in half and properly dispose of it to prevent potential misuse.

B. Actions Required Based on the Notification Letter Received

The notification letter will provide specific instructions tailored to your situation. It’s crucial to follow these directives exactly as provided to ensure that you fully comply with the local employment regulations. This may involve additional steps not mentioned in the general guidelines, so adhering to the instructions in your notification letter is paramount.


The process of renewing an Employment Pass (EP) in Singapore is structured and comprehensive, designed to ensure a smooth continuation of employment for professionals from around the globe. From the initial application to the final issuance of the pass, each step is crucial and requires careful attention to detail and adherence to the stipulated timelines. Early application, understanding the specific renewal criteria, and following the prescribed procedures are key to a successful renewal.

Adhering to the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) timelines and procedures facilitates a seamless renewal process and prevents potential disruptions to your professional and personal life in Singapore. It’s about staying informed, preparing in advance, and taking timely action.

At Xignam, we stand as a leading PR application and immigration consultant in Singapore, offering our expertise to navigate the complexities of the EP renewal process. With a deep understanding of Singapore’s immigration policies and a commitment to providing personalised assistance, we aim to streamline your renewal experience. Whether it’s understanding the latest COMPASS requirements, handling the application process, or ensuring that all paperwork is meticulously prepared, Xignam is here to assist every step of the way, making the process as straightforward and stress-free as possible.

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