How Do You Know if You’re Eligible for Singapore PR?

In a world that is riddled by strife and war, millions of Singaporeans live comfortably amidst highly developed infrastructure and an education system that has now surpassed even our predecessors. Singapore is a bustling metropolitan that has been rising at such a rapid rate that migrants continue to arrive in droves, attracted by the prospect of a better future. Many have even gone as far as to apply for permanent residency since it is their only pathway towards citizenship.

If you are reading this, you are among the hundreds of thousands who wish to apply for permanent residency every year — but how do you even know if you are eligible for it? The answer is straightforward enough, but only if you know where to look. Although there have been efforts by the authorities to streamline pertinent information, not everything has been made readily available.

That is why we have compiled the following information regarding Singapore permanent residency to help you figure out your eligibility. Read on for a complete overview of this subject matter to ease your journey towards attaining Permanent Resident (PR) status in Singapore.

 

Applying for Singapore PR: Where Do You Fit In?

Singapore’s success was only possible thanks to generations of immigrants. As such, the government has made it possible for this tradition to continue with the implementation of several PR schemes. There are six schemes under which you may be eligible for permanent residency:

  1. Family Scheme
  2. Aged Parent Scheme
  3. Professionals, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme
  4. Global Investor Programme
  5. Foreign Artistic Talent Scheme
  6. Student Scheme

Additionally, regardless of the scheme that you would be applying for permanent residency under, the authorities will assess your application based on the following factors:

1. Family Ties to Singaporeans

When processing your application, Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers will take into account any family ties that you may have to Singaporeans. Family is no small matter here; above all, most of us rank family as our highest priority. Similarly, the authorities are more likely to keep families together, rather than separate them without justifiable cause.

2. Economic Contributions and Qualifications

Your contributions to the economy and qualifications matter when it comes to PR approvals. The authorities are looking for those who can keep the engine of our economy running, rather than someone who has little to offer. Thus, ICA officers will assess your case by examining your monthly salary, educational background and professional history.

3. Age of Applicant

ICA officers would prefer to grant PR status to those who are younger as they are more likely to contribute to the betterment of society and the economy for the long term. Therefore, if you are long past your 20s, you need to act now, rather than delay your application. Our city-state is home to an ageing population, one that is projected to escalate rapidly in a 2017 United Nations report. Three decades down the road, those aged 65 years and above are expected to form nearly half of our population. As such, the authorities would be less inclined to grant the status to applicants who are closer to their silver years to prevent this occurrence.

4. Family Profile

Your family also plays a part in ICA’s assessment process. If you have children with your spouse, for instance, you may be able to sway ICA’s decision in your favour. Moreover, ICA assesses each case holistically and, therefore, compared to a single applicant with a similar set of skills as yourself, your chances of PR approval would be significantly higher.

5. Duration of Residency

Finally, the duration of your residency can influence the outcome of your PR application. If you have lived and worked here for at least a couple of years, your contributions to our country would speak for themselves. Moreover, you would have had ample time to immerse yourself in our culture and understand our traditions. At the end of the day, the authorities want individuals who can seamlessly integrate into society, rather than create friction and sow discord.

 

Eligibility for Singapore PR: Children

If you are verifying a child’s PR eligibility on their behalf, you may be pleased to learn that their chances of PR approval are high since the authorities prioritise families with children in PR applications. Moreover, there are numerous pathways through which children can attain the status. As of 2019, there are at least four schemes under which they may be eligible for permanent residency:

  • Family Scheme
  • Professionals, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme
  • Global Investor Programme
  • Student Scheme

However, it should be noted that submitting a PR application for a male child comes with but a single caveat. Under the Enlistment Act, the child will be expected to enlist and serve National Service (NS) upon turning 18 years of age. In addition, they must continue to serve Operationally Ready National Service (ORNS) for up to 40 days per year once they have completed full-time NS. Your child would not be able to defer from this to pursue an education at university, and leaving the country to do so would spell dire consequences for your entire family. Besides eliminating any possibility of a PR reinstatement for the child, any applications for re-entry permits may be rejected or shortened for the rest of the family, too. Read on to learn more about the child’s PR status eligibility.

1. Is Either of the Child’s Parents a Singapore Citizen or PR?

If the child is born to or adopted by a Singapore Citizen or PR, they are eligible for PR status under the Family Scheme, provided they are under 21 years of age, unmarried as well as born within the context of a legal marriage or legally adopted.

2. Do Either of the Child’s Parents Hold an Eligible Work Pass?

A child, whose parents hold an Employment Pass (EP), Personalised Employment Pass (PEP), Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass) or S Pass, can apply for PR under the Professionals, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers (PTS) scheme as their dependant. However, they need to be under 21 years of age, unmarried as well as born within the context of a legal marriage or legally adopted.

3. Are Either of the Child’s Parents a Foreign Investor?

Under the Global Investor Programme (GIP), a child who is aged under 21, unmarried and born within the context of a legal marriage or legally adopted is eligible for PR as a dependant. However, their parent has to adhere to a strict set of requirements to qualify for the GIP, including the investment of at least $2.5 million and proof of their business and entrepreneurial acumen.

4. Has the Child Lived and Studied in Singapore?

Finally, under the Student Scheme, a child who has lived and studied here for more than two years is eligible for PR as long as they have taken at least one national examination, including GCE ‘N’/’O’/’A’ levels and Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE), or is currently enrolled in the Integrated Programme (IP). However, they would not be applying for PR as a dependant. Instead, they would be doing so on their own merits. Although this sounds intimidating, their chances of PR approval would be sky-high this way, given the fact that its average approval rate is 80%, as reported by TODAY newspaper in 2018.

 

Eligibility for Singapore PR: Single Adults

Although the authorities tend to favour families who apply for PR together, not all is lost for single adults with exceptional qualities and/or skills. If this fits your profile, there are multiple avenues through which you can attain this status without having to combine your application with a spouse or child. As of 2019, you may be eligible for permanent residency under one of the following:

  • Professionals, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme
  • Global Investor Programme
  • Foreign Artistic Talent Scheme
  • Student Scheme

1. Is the Applicant a Holder of an Employment Pass or S Pass?

If you hold either an Employment Pass or S Pass, you are eligible for permanent residency under the PTS Scheme. Other work pass holders that qualify for this pathway includes PEP and EntrePass holders. Since you are flying solo, you would have to impress the authorities with a niche skill set that is in high demand, such as healthcare. Health professionals would always be highly sought after, in the years to come, especially in light of our rapidly ageing population.

2. Does the Applicant Intend to Invest in Singapore’s Economy?

Under the Global Investor Programme, you can be accorded the PR status by the Economic Development Board (EDB) if you invest at least $2.5 million in our economy and can prove your business and entrepreneurial capabilities.

3. Is the Applicant a Major Figure in the Arts and Cultural Scene?

If you are an arts professional who has made giant leaps in our local arts scene, including those at the leadership level, you may be eligible for PR under the Foreign Artistic Talent Scheme (ForArts). ForArts has been implemented by the National Arts Council (NAC) to encourage promising figures such as yourself to remain in Singapore and continue advancing the country’s arts and cultural landscape. However, the final decision still rests in the hands of ICA.

4. Has the Applicant Lived and Studied in Singapore?

If you are still a student, you will be eligible for PR, provided you have taken at least one national examination such as the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) or GCE ‘O’/’N’/’A’ Level or are in the Integrated Programme (IP). However, you must have lived here for at least a couple of years before you can apply for PR.

 

Eligibility for Singapore PR Status: Adults with Families

Adults with families will always be welcomed in the Republic, especially since this increases their chances of settling down in our city for the long term. As such, the authorities have created three schemes that allow you to include dependants under your care within a single application:

  • Family Scheme
  • Professionals, Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme
  • Global Investor Programme

1. Is the Applicant Married with Children to a Singaporean?

If you are married to a Singaporean, you can apply for permanent residency under the Family Scheme along with your children. Of course, to do so, your children would have to be unmarried, under 21 years of age and born within the context of a legal marriage or legally adopted. Additionally, your Singaporean spouse has to be involved in the application as the sponsor.

2. Is the Applicant a Holder of an Employment Pass or S Pass?

If you hold either an Employment Pass or S Pass, you are eligible for PR status under the PTS Scheme, which allows you to include your spouse as well as any unmarried children under the age of 21 in your application. In addition to this, your children have to be born within the context of a legal marriage or legally adopted.

3. Does the Applicant Intend to Invest in Singapore’s Economy?

If you intend to invest in Singapore’s economy under the Global Investor Programme (GIP), you can include your spouse and children in your application. However, you can only qualify for the GIP if you invest at least $2.5 million in our economy and can prove your business and entrepreneurial capabilities, making the GIP extremely rigorous and demanding.

 

Eligibility for Singapore PR Status: Aged Parents

Although aged parents are at a massive disadvantage due to their advanced age, the authorities have, nevertheless, continued to administer the Aged Parent scheme to allow Singaporeans the opportunity to care for their parents if they are financially capable of doing so.

1. Is the Applicant’s Child a Citizen of Singapore?

Only the aged parents of a Singapore Citizen are eligible for permanent residency. Unfortunately, if you are a PR, your parents will not be eligible to apply to become PRs. Instead, PRs who wish to do so should look into the Long Term Visit Pass (LTVP), which would still allow them to live with you in Singapore. Alternatively, you may wish to consider citizenship, which would then allow you to apply for permanent residency for your folks.

 

A Final Note

If you are ready to apply for permanent residency, our highly trained specialists at Paul Immigrations can help you with this daunting journey. From selecting the best pathways to compiling the endless list of mandatory documents to drafting a cover letter, our team has the experience and expertise to draw out your strengths. Contact us today for a personalised, one-on-one consultation, and we will help put your best case forward to the ICA officers to maximise your chances of PR approval.