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How to Apply for Permanent Residence in Singapore

Last modified: April 6, 2020
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As a work pass holder, you must be wondering when I should submit my Singapore PR application? Dreaming of becoming a permanent resident or citizen of Singapore is not a bad dream. However, let me tell you and all other foreign folks, it is a waiting game that tests your professionalism and qualifications.

Being a permanent resident of Singapore means, living in Singapore and enjoying freedoms and benefits its citizens have. You will be free to do business or take up employment of your choice, Central Provident fund, better education for your children, & healthcare for your family.

You will maximise your chances if you have better qualifications than the basic eligibility criterion. So, ask yourself, “How will Singapore benefit if you get the PR status?”

 

What is the Eligibility to Apply for PR

You, as a foreigner, is eligible to apply for PR status if you are a:

  • Spouse of a Singapore citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Unmarried legal child below 21 years of age
  • Aged parent of a Singapore Citizen
  • Employment Pass or S Pass holder
  • Student who studies in Singapore
  • Foreigner interested in investing in Singapore

 

What are the Singapore Permanent Resident Schemes

If it is your opinion that Singapore is the place where you will be able to prosper to your fullest extent. Relocating to it and later, acquiring a permanent resident status and lastly, its citizenship will prove beneficial to you. Foreigners use one of the three schemes listed below to acquire the status.

  • Professional, Technical Personnel & Skilled Workers Scheme
  • Global Investor Program Scheme
  • Foreign Artistic Talent Scheme

 

Professional, Technical Personnel & Skilled Workers Scheme (PTS scheme)

Who can apply: Use this scheme, if you are already working in Singapore. As per the statistical data, as many as 95% of professionals use PTS scheme to acquire their PR status.

The grant of your residency status depends on a number of factors like your age, stay in Singapore, employment profile, & salary.

Eligibility: Holder of Employment Pass or S Pass like Personalised Employment Pass or Entrepreneur Pass.

 

Global Investor Program Scheme (GIP Scheme)

Who can apply: GIP scheme is specially designed for the investors and their family members wanting to be permanent residents of Singapore.

The approval of your PR status depends on your entrepreneurial and business track record, and your business proposal or investment plan. You need to apply to the Singapore Economic Development Board for your PR.

Eligibility: Under GIP scheme, you should be prepared to invest in an existing Singapore business or set up a new one.

GIP scheme offers you two options:

  • Register a new start-up with at least S$2.5 million as capital or use it to fund the expansion of an existing business.
  • Invest a minimum of S$2.5 million in the funds approved by GIP authorities.

 

Foreign Artistic Talent Scheme (ForArts)

Who can apply: Artists can take advantage of ForArts to relocate to Singapore. Apply for permanent residency, if you are proficient in arts, photography, dance, music, theatre, literature or film making.

The grant of your PR status also depends on your contributions to the arts and cultural scene in Singapore. You should also have played a leading role in the betterment of the local art-related activities. You should also have concrete plans for the growth of Singaporean arts and cultural sector.

Eligibility: You need to be one of the accomplished and renounced artists in your native place. Having an international reputation as an artist is an added advantage.

 

Can Your Family Members Apply for Singapore Permanent Residency

Your family member can also apply along with you for the PR status. They will need to fulfil the following eligibility criteria:

  • Spouse and unmarried children (below 21 years of age) of a Singapore citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Aged parents of a Singapore citizen

Who else can apply:

A student wanting to study in Singapore can apply under PTS scheme for the permanent residency.

 

What are the Obligations of Singapore Permanent Residents

As per the Enlistment Act,

  • All male citizens & PRs must register for national service on turning 16½ years old and serve 2 years after reaching 18.
  • Every year they must devote 40 days for Operationally Ready National Service until they are 50 years in age (officers), and 40 for other ranks.
  • Since you are already working, you will be exempted from the national service.
  • PRs can only buy second-hand HDB flats.

 

Processing of a SG PR Application

Processing of a SG PR Application

Every year, Singapore awards PR status to as many as 30,000 qualified individuals. A large majority of them are pass holders. At this point, you must be wondering, “When is the right time for me to send my PR application?”

In theory, you, as an EP holder, can do so right on the first day you start working in Singapore. However, technically, you need to wait for at least 6 months. The reason is you need to submit six month’s of payslips from your Singaporean employer along with your application.

 

What is the Role of Singapore Employer

A section of this application needs to be completed by your employer. It means what they think about you, the company’s credibility, employment background, salary, and stability of your job also counts. Your financial status, contributions to charitable causes, moral character, and family ties in Singapore are also considered.

 

How Much Time a Singapore PR Application Takes?

Generally, authorities take 6-12 months to process your Singapore PR application. You need to be aware that only individuals under the 50 years of age can apply for the status.

You need to be working in Singapore for at least six months. In practice, you should wait until the ‘due time.’ It is specific time you must wait out for getting the status. It depends on the Singapore work visa or pass you are holding.

  • The holders of P1 (Employment) Pass need to wait for 1-2 year.
  • The P2 pass holders are advised to wait for at least 2-3 years.
  • S or Q1 Pass holders need to wait for at least 4 years.

 

Can I Submit My PR Application Apply Online

If you are eligible for SG PR and wants to go ahead with the application, visit ICA website:

  • As a work pass holder, you can log-in using your SingPass.
  • As a foreigner student, you will need to use your Foreign Identification Number (FIN) and the issuance date of immigration pass and answer a few questions to determine your eligibility.

The Form 4A has two parts: PR Application Form & Annex A (Form EP4).

  • You need to complete PR Application Form; fill in your and family’s details, educational and professional history.
  • Your employer completes the Annex A part of the application; fills in details like nature of the business.

 

SG PR Application Documents

Form EP4 gives the information on the documents you need to submit. You need to upload copies of these documents in PDF and JPG format and verify them later by producing originals in English.

In addition, you can also submit appointment letters from the previous employer, performance evaluation reports, and recommendation letters to bolster your claim.

Give as accurate details as possible in chronological order so as to avoid delays. If you cannot provide a certificate or diploma avoid mentioning it.

 

What is the Processing Time for an SG PR Application

Submit the completely filled application using Upload Completed Form. Make sure to submit the application within 7 days after starting the online application process.

ICA officials take at least 3-6 months to process the PR applications. They will send a letter to let you know the approval or rejection of your application. You may need to produce the original documents.

Pay S$100 non-refundable processing fee/applicant. Save and print the acknowledgement page and your application for future reference. For every successful application, pay:

  • SGD20 for Entry Permit
  • SGD50 for a 5-year Re-Entry Permit
  • SGD50 for Identity Card
  • SGD30 per Entry Visa (foreigners requiring a visa)

 

When to Apply to Renew Singapore PR

The processing of the application to renew SG PR needs at least 3-6 weeks. It means you will need to fill and submit Form 6 at least 2 months in advance. If your Re-Entry Permit expires, you will stop being a Singapore Permanent Resident.

To initiate the SG PR renewal process:

  • You need to visit the website run by the Singapore Immigration & Checkpoints Authority.
  • As a Singapore Permanent Resident, you can renew your Re-Entry Permit online. Access the e-REP service by using your SingPass Account.
  • You can also submit the application through the Embassy in person (needs supporting documents).

 

What If Your Application Gets Rejected?

There is no restriction on how many times you can apply for your SG PR status. ICA processes and approves or rejects thousands of PR applications every year. So, if your application gets rejected, wait for six months and apply again.

If you, as a foreigner, want to live and work in Singapore for the rest of your life, then acquiring its citizenship will prove beneficial to you. For it to happen, you will need to prove yourself as a worthy Permanent Resident. It will definitely help you in achieving your goal.

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