Wife working once we come to Kuala Lumpur

I am a UK citizen working in London and my wife is Filipina but will have a UK passport in a few months.
Later in 2020 my company has said I can work in KL if I want.

My wife is a support teacher in London.

Once she comes to KL with me will it be possible for her to work as she will be bored at home?

I gather the steps will be she gets a dependent visa then finds a school willing to apply?

Or is it a lot more difficult than this?


It's a bit (lot) trickier than that unfortunately. The government has really tightened up on employment visas and basically made it harder to hire expats. Their salary has to be at least 5,000RM a month (might seem not much but a decent wage for a local is half that or less) and they have to have specialist qualifications/experience that show a clear reason for awarding them a job over a local Malaysian.

Support/assistant teaching positions are always filled by locals or people with residency rights (eg married to a Malaysian) -  Immigrations stopped approving work visas for UK/expat teachers to work in these roles (an international school had big issues with this recently).

It is illegal to work on a dependant pass, so she would need to convince an employer that she is highly skilled enough to warrant a 5k (minimum) salary and the employment visa costs (which also add up).

If she has a PGCE or equivalent and a Bachelor's degree, she could seek work as a teacher in an international school. However she would really need to seek a job before coming here. The key recruitment period is now until about Feb/March and to be honest, many KL positions have already been filled. TES is where most schools advertise their roles.

If she doesn't have those qualifications, your move to KL might be the perfect time for her to study or get stuck into some volunteer work - there are plenty of organisations here that need an extra pair of hands, including schools for refugees and the like where her skills would be super valuable.

Hope some of that is helpful. Feel free to PM me if you'd like more info.


Wow thank you for this advice, really great informative post.

Very interesting, she does want to study, but she has volunteered a lot, I'll look for schools she could volunteer in.

Check out IDEAS Academy. They offer free places to refugee students & very very cheap places to local students who couldn't otherwise afford international schooling. All of the teachers are volunteers and they got amazing IGCSE results from their first Year 11 graduates last year! A very special place that is well worth considering :)

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