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Registration, Permits & Other Documentation

Singapore (City) - Registration, Permits & Other Documentation

Click here to go to this city guide's homepage

Registration and permit issues are well-anticipated and catered for in Singapore by the relevant agencies.

The Ministry of Manpower (18 Havelock Road Singapore 059764; for employment assistance, Tel: (+65) 6883 5885) is the government agency that administers the registrations and permits for foreigners wishing to stay in Singapore for employment purposes. You can apply for and renew your residence permits online at www.mom.gov.sg.

There are several schemes to cater for varying reasons when applying for a Singapore residency status. The first type is a professional visa, known commonly as an Employment Pass (EP) in Singapore. There are three main categories: an EP, a miscellaneous work pass and a personalized employment pass (PEP).

An EP is meant for professionals and executives who earn a fixed monthly salary of more than SGD$2,500 and posses recognized qualifications. Employment Pass holders can apply for the Dependant's Pass and/or Long Term Visit Pass for their family members (spouse, children, parents, parents-in-law). Employment Passes are usually valid for two years upon the first approval, and three years upon subsequent renewals. Click here for details.

The PEP is a new pass that differs from an EP in that it is not tied to any employer and is granted on the strength of an EP’s holder’s individual merits. The minimum annual basic salary a PEP holder must earn is SGD$30,000 for each calendar year of the PEP. A PEP holder can remain in Singapore for up to 6 months in-between jobs to evaluate new employment opportunities. PEP holders will continue to enjoy the dependents' privileges of their original WPs. The PEP is issued once only and is valid for 5 years. The PEP caters to the growing number of expatriates who choose to work in Singapore on local terms.

Another type of residency status is a work permit. This permit caters for foreigners who earn a monthly basic salary of not more than SGD$2,500. These permits are usually processed by the Employer.

There are other residency-status permits that cater to a variety of situations. For example, the Employment Pass Eligibility Certificate permits qualified foreigners to stay in Singapore up to a year to facilitate their search for a job in Singapore. An EntrePass is issued to foreign entrepreneurs who would like to start a business in Singapore. Applications are jointly determined by two government agencies, the Ministry of Manpower and SPRING Singapore. For more details, click here.

Some expatriates who wish to stay in Singapore for a long time consider the option of applying for a Permanent Resident status. There is a thoughtful discussion thread on this topic, including the benefits and considerations for applying for a PR status here.

Hiring a foreigner as a stay-in domestic helper is popular among Singaporeans and expatriates as a means to support and assist in domestic affairs. They can be an asset, especially if there are children or aged parents to care for, and if both parents choose to work in Singapore. There may be initial difficulties in language if you hire a helper from Indonesia or Sri Lanka as compared to helpers from the Philippines who have a better command of English. To find out more about the process of hiring a foreign domestic helper and the work permit application, click here. Single male expatriates who need domestic help can consider part-time cleaners or choose to live in serviced apartments.

Registering births and deaths

The Births and Deaths Unit under the ambit of the Singapore Immigration and Customs Authority (www.ica.gov.sg) oversees the registration of births and deaths occurring in Singapore and its territorial waters. If you would like to register your child’s birth in Singapore, you can do so at the Citizen Services Centre or any of the 9 hospitals listed:

Registry of Births & Deaths Citizen Services Centre 3rd Storey, ICA Building 10 Kallang Road Singapore 208718

(1) East Shore Hospital
(2) Gleneagles Hospital
(3) KK Women's & Children's Hospital
(4) Mount Alvernia Hospital
(5) Mount Elizabeth Hospital
(6) National University Hospital
(7) Raffles Hospital
(8) Singapore General Hospital
(9) Thomson Medical Centre

Singapore law requires all deaths occurring in Singapore to be registered within 24 hours of occurrence. A Death Certificate will be issued upon completion of registration. You can make the registration at several designated venues. For details, click here.

Registering your marriage

If you would like to register your marriage in Singapore, the Registry of Marriages (www.rom.gov.sg; Tel: (+65) 6338 7808) is located at 7 Fort Canning Rise Singapore 179869. Do note that if you are a foreigner who has married a Singapore Citizen / Permanent Resident, this does not automatically grant you residency rights in Singapore. For more information, click here.

You can petition for a divorce to be settled in Singapore even if neither of you are Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, provided either of you have resided continuously in Singapore for 3 years immediately before filing the petition.

Expat Health Insurance Partners

Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.


Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.