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Employee Pass Holder Leaving Job? Specific Care to be Taken by the Singapore Employing Company

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Employee Pass Holder Leaving Job? Specific Care to be taken by the Singapore Employing Company.

Resigning from a job is a huge life decision. Just like applying for a job, resigning from it also entails certain formalities that every employee must comply with to maintain his or her integrity and avoid any serious consequences in the long run.

Employment Pass (EP) holder employees who are about to resign from their companies in Singapore and may leave the country soon commonly create two questions for employing Company—the specific procedures that the companies must follow and any considerations that their companies need to take note of. This article will elaborate on these aspects, as well as on other necessary details about resignation procedures for EP holders in Singapore.

As an EP Holder, What Would Happen During and After resignation From a Singapore Company?

Your work visa, such as Work Permit, S Pass, EP, EntrePass, and Personalised Employment Pass is considered cancelled on your last day of employment. Then, you will be issued a 30-day short-term visit pass to settle anything outstanding. Next, you must leave Singapore. Before leaving Singapore, you must return your EP card to the immigration officer.

It is also important to note that your salary will be withheld by your employer for tax clearance purposes with IRAS. Once IRAS has issued a Tax Clearance Certificate, which confirms that your tax liabilities have been accounted for, your salary will be released.

This entire process will last for around 21 days. However, if there are outstanding tax liabilities against you, IRAS may issue a stop order certificate.

The discussed policies only apply to EP holders and not to Singapore permanent residents and citizens.

What Are the Procedures That a Singapore Company Must Follow Upon EP holders Resignation?

The procedures that a Singapore company must adhere to upon your resignation are as follows:

  • Your salary for the last month (or last one and a half month) of your employment will be withheld from you.
    • Generally, your employer will obtain all the data of your salary. Your employer can estimate your tax liabilities based on IRAS tax rates.
Singapore EP holder leaving job - Resignation
  • You will be issued a salary certificate, also known as the IR8A.
  • You will be asked to settle your tax liabilities and acquire the tax clearance certificate from IRAS office at Newton Road.
    • This procedure can be completed online using your Sing Pass.
    • You must inform IRAS that you have resigned from your job and you will be leaving Singapore soon; thus, you need a fast track assessment of your income for a certain period of time and you need to pay your taxes immediately.
    • IRAS will then compute your tax and the results will be provided to you in a couple of days.
  • Once you have settled your tax liabilities, your company can now release your withheld salary.

This entire procedure guarantees that before you leave Singapore, your salary and taxes have been properly settled and you have no outstanding dues. You may also reconnect with all the individuals or companies that you have transacted with, such as landlords, banks, Telco companies, or schools, to settle any liabilities, if there are any.

What Are the Risks of Noncompliance With Resignation Procedures in Singapore for EP Holders?

Singapore EP holder leaving job - Risks of Noncompliance

An Example Scenario

Suppose that you have worked for a Singapore company from January to July 2020. After submitting your resignation letter to the management, you are scheduled to leave the country in August. In this circumstance, your tax filing responsibilities (as per Singapore Income Tax Act and Regulations) will be due in April 2021. When August comes and you have already resigned and are likely to leave Singapore, IRAS will not know anything about your resignation and will not issue any tax payments from you. Consequently, you may not be able to comply with the tax dues after leaving Singapore. When April 2021 comes, IRAS may inquire with your previous company about you and your unpaid taxes.

As an EP holder, you must follow the proper procedures of resigning in Singapore. Ensure that you have already acquired the tax clearance before you leave Singapore.


Singapore EP holder leaving job - Undergo the Same Procedures

Do I Need to Undergo the Same Procedures If I Will Just Transfer to Another Singapore Company?

There are also instances when an EP holder will be resigning from one company to work for another company in Singapore. If this is your case, you will still need to undergo all the previously mentioned procedures, from salary withholding to settling tax liabilities and acquiring the tax clearance certificate from IRAS. Following the same procedures even though you will be staying in Singapore is important for this simple reason: your company must no longer be held responsible for your actions after your resignation.

Suppose that you are not coping well with your new work and decide to resign again. If you resign without fulfilling the required formalities, you will still be putting the same risks and tax liabilities on your previous company’s name.

The Importance of Resigning Properly for EP Holders in Singapore

Whether you are leaving Singapore for good or staying in the country to work for another company, as an EP holder, you have to comply with the procedures in resigning in Singapore. You have to handle your resignation with the same integrity that you manifested during your job application. Doing so will speak a lot about you not just as a person, but most importantly, as a professional.

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