EP/S-Pass Rejected without clear Reason


This month, I just applied for EP/S-Pass but it was rejected without a clear reason within 2 weeks. It only mention that I am not eligible to work in Singapore. Even after appealing and contacting directly to the ministry, their reply is the same.

After I checked online, my application is for S-Pass. And according to the online SAT tools, my qualifications only makes me eligible for S-Pass. If there are no difference with the application process for both S-Pass and EP, and the system just assigned you according to your qualification, salary and working experience, I guess it makes sense they put my application for S-Pass.

But why they said I am not eligible? This is my only confusion. I have MBA and Bachelor Degree in engineering from usa with working experience for more than 6 years. My current and Salary offered is much more than enough for EP. In the past, I studied in Singapore for 4 years and never overstayed my visa. Worldwide, I have don't have any criminal history. My company is a worldwide reputable company and they have many expat and local working so there is no problem with their quota for S-Pass. My position is not easily filled as the interview process until now takes more than 5 months and it's been more 8 months since the job is posted.

Is it because I am an Indonesian? Recently, Indonesia and Singapore have some conflict with the Indonesian tax amnesty program. Is it the reason? I keep coming back to this reason. Do anyone else recently have the same experience or can enlightened me the possible reasons?

Sorry to know your case, I certainly don't think your nationality is an issue of approving work pass. If you have done Master and Bachelor degree and more than 6 years of experience then not sure why your employer didn't apply EP?

I assume your graduation and Master degree are regular courses (not distance learning or similar program - as it does not have any value addition to your application). You may be over qualified for S pass, and if offered salary to you above $5000 per month then EP chances are there. Remember applying EP with master degree and 6 yrs exp, your employer should offer at least 5000 or even much more as per market standard, anything lesser will draw a negative line on your application. If you see eligibility criteria of EP, the more you experienced, the higher pay package will be considered.

And, about MOM, it's not their obligation to tell you or employer the cause of rejection. They may or may not.

Below links are the eligibility criterias for EP n S pass. FYI, both are not same and are completely different from education to salary to experience. … ligibility … ligibility

SAT tool will not show you that you are eligible for S pass after mentioning your Bachelor degree and Master degree with 6 years experiences.

My above two points could be the case of rejection your application. Wish you good luck.

Both of my education degree is obtained full time. My prospective employee said that the procedure of applying of either EP or S-pass goes through the same windows and the system will automatically placed my application according to my qualifications. I don't know if the internal processing procedure is computerized like the SAT tools before they placed it as EP or S-Pass.

I personally try the Online Self Assessment Tools it self, and it shows that I only have eligibility for an S-Pass. Maybe it's because of the position that I am applying for,  salary does not reach as high as $5000/month, etc.

MoM should have told us the reason of rejection instead of stating that I am not an eligible candidate. If we did not know the reason how we can appeal their decisions to rejects the application. … ected-pass

From that statement only, it means that I am not eligible at all to work in Singapore.
I know plenty of people that had their application rejected but the reasons of rejection were all clearly stated. So they can improve the application and appeal before getting approved at the end.

I don't come across anyone who has got response from MoM stating details of his/her pass rejection.

As I said earlier, MoM does not entertain candidates nor it has obligation to tell the candidate or employer the details of rejection. But sometime it states oneline or two about the rejection which will give an ample of indication on why your application was rejected.

I'm really surprised by knowing from you that MoM categorical said you are not eligible to work in Singapore (I can't see your link though).

Could be one of the case where you are over qualified for S pass (educational background and salary offered to you), but however salary offer to you with educational background (Master n bachelor degrees) to consider EP is under below the market standard which is why MoM is not considering. I just gave an example of $5000 (there is no such slab available). Eligibility criteria says higher degree with number of years experience will fetch more salary. The more number of years of experience you have, the more salary criteria will b considered (minimum salary for EP is $3,300 and for S pass is $2,200).

The link is just the MoM web address for appealing the rejection.

It's state, "You have 3 months to appeal an unsuccessful Employment Pass application, but you should do so only if you can address the reasons for rejection."

I have a friend that has his EP application to work in his own company rejected because the salary stated inside the first application is too high. So he reapplied with lower salary and it was approved.

Another friend that is rejected because of the reason that his working experience is not related to the future position in Singapore. So he discussed with his employer to modify the position title and work description and appealed the decision and eventually it was approved.

If there is no specific reasons why the application is rejected, I cannot blindly keep on appealing or reapplying with the result being so obvious.

Your employer can enquire with MoM as the application was submitted by them not you. Secondly, it has not stated any where that you are not eligible to work in Singapore (which you had claimed in first message). It was a standard message from them stating that you have 3 months time to appeal and address the reason of rejection in order to see a different result.

So, liaise with your employer who can request them to provide the few more points so that they can appeal in a positive way.

You are giving your friends example, I think MoM may not be stated in their rejection report saying your salary is too high or your job description is not reasonable rather MOM might have given hint of such things which you can find out. So, ask your employer to reach out MoM and request them. Other than that you can't do anything. If you reach out again and again then it will be a negative trend and they will not entertain you further. They are strict and you need to handle the situation carefully.

The company did try appeal and enquire directly by phone. But the ministry personnel just gave the same statement without giving any clear reason why it is rejected.

I am not sure if the company is lying. But from the statement 'not eligible to work in Singapore' itself, it means no company in Singapore can apply a work pass for me. And this company is the biggest player in the industry worldwide.

Beside Indonesia, I have worked in USA, Europe and China and never get any work permit application rejected.

I can't comment about other countries but in Singapore it has different set of criteria to match in order for your application to consider. In one criteria where you are failing is offered salary. The market trend in SG with MBA n bachelor degree and 6 years of experience, the salary is offering in the range between $6000 to $15,000 per month or even more. Example: A quantitative analyst/ investment banker/ portfolio analyst with a top tier MBA degree and 6 yrs exp can draw around $12000 to $15000 per month here. However, a MBA graduate with 6yrs experience in logistics can fetch $6,000 or more. So, when you said your offering salary is much less than $5,000 then it is way below to market standard. So, it could be one of the reason (again I'm just guessing). So, no matter whether you had worked in US or Europe as salary wise it's really way below the market standard in Singapore.

I agree with Surya:
- With a degree, MBA and 6 years relevant, international work experience, you are a candidate for EP, not S-Pass. If your employer applied for an S-Pass (this IS a separate application from EP!), it might be rejected for this reason. (If, however, your employer applied for EP and ticked the box "If ineligible, consider for S-Pass instead", the rejection was for both EP and S-Pass.)
- With a degree, MBA and 6 years relevant, international work experience, your market value is more than S$6000/month, more likely S$8000-10000. MoM rejects too low earners because they don't want foreigners to distort the local wage structure.

Hi Bro,

we have the same case :) in fact now the company said let's try again in an other 6 months :)

HI, I faced the same cause of rejection regardless my PhD qualifications and related work experience in other countries. The only reason stated was "you're not eligible to apply for a work pass here".

Me also the same,
2 company applied EP for me during last 3 months.
1st one rejected, appeal withdrawn by me coz i decided to try with 2nd company
2nd one rejected, appeal also rejected
Reason is the same "not eligible to apply workpass" no further detail reason due sensitive nature when me or the employer call MOM to asked for it.
I worked in SG for 5 years, no problem on applying EP so far when changes company or extend EP, the last one my current company extend my EP end of 2016 for another 3 years. also earn fixed above 12K/month.

Hmm i also indonesian, i hope its just coincidentaly.

Anyone can enlight us ?

There are many possible reasons for an EP to be rejected. If MoM declines to tell you, you will never know which one applied in your case. Sorry!

same happen with me, im indonesian also :)
9 years experience, and Mom didint give any clear information about why rejected, even the company confused about it

I am Indonesian, bachelor degree with 12 years experience. my experience relevant to the position applied. SAT tool result only SPass eligible even my salary and position at managerial level. so my employer follow SAT result to apply for SPass instead of EP.

2 weeks came with rejected result "this candidate is not eligble to apply for a work pass" , employer appeal with reason that I am international transfer and need to handover leaving manager. employer also reason that cant find candidate with same skill sets and experience in shorttime. but 1 week appeal also rejected.

is it due to type of pass applied? it should go for EP instead of SPass?

To classify EP or S pass, you need to check SAT tool available at MoM website. If your institution or university where you completed your graduation is not recognised by MoM then your degree won’t be recognised. Secondly, when MoM says this candidate is not eligible to apply work pass here, that means you are not eligible to work here. So, no matter how many times you try, MoM will reject. I would suggest try else where. Good luck

1) my institution listed in SAT tool.
2) for me its okay, but my other Indonesian friend got same rejection reason even he ever work in Singapore as EP holder for 2 years. he didn't have any criminal record.

from above 2 points and many Indonesian friend rejected, maybe started to think Indonesian has run-out quota.

my employer trying to get local/pr thru job bank. if not succeeded, they will apply EP for me with increase position and salary. hopefully pass type problem, not my self problem.

below link for same rejection reason and he is also Indonesian.

He worked in Singapore before for 3 years. go back for around 10 months and come back again to Singapore looking another chance.

Employer offer him 3.5K, apply EP and/or SPASS, but turned out not eligible rejection reason.

Finally he passed the EP from other company which offer him higher salary.

I think SAT Tool only for reference, as long as match with EP criteria, I should pass EP even SAT Tool advise for SPass. But need to tickmark SPass if not eligible.

Its always advisable to tick both (let MoM decides which pass you should be entitled for).

$3.5k fixed salary (basic salary) is not eligible for EP. Minimum salary cap starts from $3.6k but MoM looks much higher salary (depends on number of years of experiences and current market trend). Each application is considered at MoM on its merit, so you shouldn’t compare with other applicants. Good luck

Below link for your reference. … ligibility


same happen to me. I move to SG for inter company transfer. I checked in the system and my profile is eligible for EP pass, after 2 weeks of EP application I got a rejection with statement "the candidate is not eligible to apply for a work pass".

I am Indonesian with load of overseas education and working experiences. I don't know if there is correlation, maybe it is just coincidence.... nonetheless I drop my plan to work in SG and look for MY or stay here for longer.

Hi boss im currently workinh here in singapore now im holding spass and i have interviewd last time the company i will be transfering to another company and i dont know until now i my new spass still pending even if they already had a record of me why is this happening?

They may have your documents in their system but recently the yardstick for approval got stringent. So, selection criteria is now more tough and longer than usual time. Good luck

Hi boss! But the thing is that i already have existing  spass now here they cannot jst transfer it? Or change it to new employer?

Boss surya so what if i will renew my pass w/ the same employer it might be rejeted or pending as well? Im asking this ah for renewal only

For renewal, chances are still there to get rejection, if the minimum standard is not maintained or new yardstick is not fulfilled.

When you change a new employer, it will treat as fresh case and will go through the same process as a new person applying for S pass. Good luck

Hello, I am another Indonesian here. I've got my SPass approved this Monday. However, I held EP before from another employer. I think MoM tightening the criteria as I saw many people got downgraded too. Good luck to everyone that still waiting.

Ok boss i see what if i submitted the wrong docs to my new employer boss? And i will ask them to draw my application and apply me back and sumbit the right one? Coz i think i submitted the wrong docs to them is it ok? To draw the pending application and apply me back?

How come you have submitted wrong documents! What kind of wrong documents? Yes, they can apply with new documents or a new employer can apply. But, not sure about your wrong documents, if there is forged documents or fake documents then MoM can easily find out, it will be a big NO from MoM on pass approval. Be careful going ahead, any small mistake can lead into bigger problem. Good luck

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