EP Got rejected for being a contractor

Hi guys,

I just wanted to ask if anyone of you here has got the same experience and got his/her pass rejected for this particular reason?

"The work pass is for the foreigner to work as an employee for the direct employer only and not to work for another company/client."

Please note that I have been working for a company that had asked the help of a contractor to apply for my pass under them. This means that I am working for Company A and my pass is under Company B because Company A doesn't have any quota for foreigners.

Let's go back to September when Company B applied for the renewal of my pass. It got rejected for no particular reason from MOM when I checked it online but I doubt that Company B doesn't want me to know the reason why my pass was rejected as the lady from company B keep on apologizing to me when I returned the card to them and she told me that the rejection doesn't have to do anything with me. A week after the rejection, Company B, and Company A had decided to engage Company C's (Company A's business partner) services to apply for my pass. Correct me if I am wrong, this application is now considered to be a new pass application instead of being a renewal.

After a month my pass got rejected for the following reason mentioned above. This has prompted Company C to contact MOM and escalated this as an urgent matter as the reason MOM gave them is not satisfactory because I had been working on the same set up since Sept 2019 and they reinstated to MOM this - "We have informed MOM that Company C as an IT company, it is common to outsource IT  staff to their customers."

Has anyone here had the same experience and what was the outcome after MOM got back to your company? Has the escalation of the matter got the situation fixed and your pass approved?

Any insights will be greatly appreciated!


Thanks!

Obviously (to MoM), your employer (ab-) uses this outsourcing method to get around a lack of quota to employ you.
MoM of course doesn't like such tricks- and thus rejected your pass.
I doubt that an escalation (or anything other than your actual employer having space for you in their quota) would fix the issue.
Time for you to look for a new job then. (Good luck!)

HI beppi,

Thanks for responding. I just don't understand why was that the reason for the rejection because I was employed for about a year on that setup and If this wasn't allowed even then, how come my pass was approved under Company B when it was applied last Sept 2019? To add, Company A and Company B had been doing the same thing for years now and they haven't had any rejections as Company C had.

You need to understand that company B is working as a consultant who is engaging contractors to work for company A. So, this is quite a common practice in IT services industry. So your earlier pass approval was based on the above format. This year your pass renewal did not approve, which may have multiple reasons such as:
- MoM is now much more stricter to approve foreign workers compare to last year
- The salary slab now increased substantially for EP holders so salary slab at MoM is now more stringent
- Company B may have received removal of preferential pass services from MoM due to not following guidelines of hiring local people (FYI there are many consultants and agencies are under MoM’s scrutiny for not giving locals as preference and their preferential services was taken back by MoM).

Did the agency appeal?

Now, company C who is a partner with company A is applying for you, Company C must provide valid rationale and strong evidence that they tried locally for 1 month (now the time has increased from 15 days to 4 weeks to publish the position in jobBank). So, company C must have to prepare the above strong case before they appeal at MoM. Good luck

jcs31: I'm in the same situation, working for Client Company through Agency Payroll. Renewal rejected with same reason as yours on 9th Oct. Agency appealed immediately by providing agreement between Client Company and Agency. I'm still waiting for the approval, I'm STVP and applied for 2nd extension of STVP.

Client company ready to apply for EP, but again we need to start the process from zero and it may take months. I need to get the renewal approved through agency and client company can apply EP immediately as their job posting waiting period also completed with out any successful applicants.

surya2k wrote:

You need to understand that company B is working as a consultant who is engaging contractors to work for company A. So, this is quite a common practice in IT services industry. So your earlier pass approval was based on the above format. This year your pass renewal did not approve, which may have multiple reasons such as:
- MoM is now much more stricter to approve foreign workers compare to last year
- The salary slab now increased substantially for EP holders so salary slab at MoM is now more stringent
- Company B may have received removal of preferential pass services from MoM due to not following guidelines of hiring local people (FYI there are many consultants and agencies are under MoM’s scrutiny for not giving locals as preference and their preferential services was taken back by MoM).

Did the agency appeal?

Now, company C who is a partner with company A is applying for you, Company C must provide valid rationale and strong evidence that they tried locally for 1 month (now the time has increased from 15 days to 4 weeks to publish the position in jobBank). So, company C must have to prepare the above strong case before they appeal at MoM. Good luck

Hi Surya,

I may have to agree with you that probably Company B may have done something wrong to get noticed by MOM and hence rejecting my pass renewal. They have appealed my pass for a week then they withdrew it because they have to apply a new application under Company C.

Just also to give an update, yesterday I had been informed by my boss that MOM is asking for some information that we have to justify that I am badly needed by my Client and what are the specific projects that I had worked on in the past and currently working on. We also must also have a strong case to show to MOM that I am also needed by the CLient to provide some guidance to the newly hired staffs since I have been supporting them for a longer period of time.

spr07 wrote:

jcs31: I'm in the same situation, working for Client Company through Agency Payroll. Renewal rejected with same reason as yours on 9th Oct. Agency appealed immediately by providing agreement between Client Company and Agency. I'm still waiting for the approval, I'm STVP and applied for 2nd extension of STVP.

Client company ready to apply for EP, but again we need to start the process from zero and it may take months. I need to get the renewal approved through agency and client company can apply EP immediately as their job posting waiting period also completed with out any successful applicants.

Thank you for sharing your experience here spr07! I hope it will turn out well in your favor. Please update this thread once you got some updates.

Hi All,

I am just updating:  I got my 2nd STVP extension which will end on 27th but we haven't had any news regarding with my appeal yet. I'll keep this thread posted for any updates.

My EP renewal approved today, overall timelines below.

13/08 - EP Renewal applied Pending status from day 1
05/09 - MoM asked for renewed contract and job description
09/09 - Additional documents submitted
07/10 - Submitted for 1 month STVP and temp extension as existing EP expiring on 13/10
08/10 - 1 month STVP with work pass temp extension approved till 12/11
09/10 - Rejected. Reason: Client Company should apply for EP as employee working for Client Company. I work for Client A under Agency A payroll, Agency A applied for my renewal.
12/10 - Appealed with supporting documents to show the contract between Client Company and Agency
05/11 - 2nd STVP extension applied
09/11 - 2nd STVP extension approved, but not received any confirmation to Employer, so called MoM and confirmed
13/11 - I called MoM and confirmed that there is no limit on number of STVP extensions as long as renewal application is pending for approval and employer can appeal rejections with valid reason
17/11 - I called IRAS to check about my 2020 assessment, requested them to expedite since I have't received assessment
19/11 - I called MoM to enquire about PEP
20/11 - Received income tax assessment for 2020, and EP also approved

I'm not sure if we can link Income Tax assessment and EP renewal approval, it can be a coincidence

Look like it’s a coincidence as MoM has direct access to IRAS to get the details if they want. Good to hear that your EP got approved. Technically it’s an EP renewal. Good luck

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