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Malaysia – Work Permits and Working Legally

Working Legally in Malaysia

It is necessary for expats to obtain a work permit in order to work legally in Malaysia. The work permit, also known as a “Employment Pass,” is a requirement for all foreign workers who wish to work in the country.

Types of Work Permits for Expats in Malaysia

There are three types of work permits for expats in Malaysia:

  • Employment Pass (Category I)
  • Employment Pass (Category II)
  • Professional Visit Pass

The Employment Pass (Category I) is for foreign professionals and executives, while the Status Pass (Category II) is for skilled foreign workers who earn less than MYR 5,000 (approximately USD 1,230) per month. The Professional Visit Pass is for short-term assignments, such as for consultants or technical experts.

Work Permit Application Process in Malaysia

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The employer is responsible for making the application for the work permit. The process typically involves the following steps:

  • The employer applies for the work permit through the Expatriate Services Division (ESD) of the Malaysian Immigration Department.
  • The employer submits the necessary documents, including the expat’s passport, visa, and a copy of their resume.
  • The ESD processes the application and, if approved, issues the work permit.

The time it takes to process the application varies, but it can typically take up to 4-6 weeks.

Work Permit Documents in Malaysia

The following documents are required to apply for a work permit in Malaysia:

  • Passport
  • Resume
  • Degree or professional certificates
  • Proof of medical insurance
  • Completed application form
  • A letter of offer from the employer
  • Proof of financial support (such as bank statements)
  • Other supporting documents, such as police clearance certificates or references.

Work Permit Costs in Malaysia

The cost of applying for a work permit in Malaysia varies depending on the type of work permit and the length of the assignment. The employer is responsible for paying the fees, which can range from MYR 1,000 to MYR 6,000 (approximately USD 240 to USD 1,440).

Reliable Information on Working Legally in Malaysia

Expats can find reliable information on working legally in Malaysia by visiting the following websites:

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