An in-principle approval letter plays an efficient role in your Singapore immigration journey. Whenever you apply for Singapore passes, you obtain the IPA which allows you the travel to Singapore to complete the rest of the formalities to issue the pass card. If you are unaware of the must facts and importance of IPA letter to your visa and passes continue reading this guide to know everything about In-principle approval letter.
Before you submit your Singapore immigration documents to the Ministry of manpower ensure that the documents are translated into English. If your documents are not in English, then choose certified translation agency Singapore for Work Passes and Permits Translation Service.
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2 IPA for foreign workers
What is IPA?
In principle approval letter or IPA is one of the important documents that you receive once your immigration application to Singapore is approved. This document is an indication that your application has been approved, and now you can prepare yourself to move to Singapore.
Why is IPA Letter important?
In principle approval letter is a very important document and plays a great role in helping you arrive in Singapore. No matter you are applying for a student pass, work permit, or any other Singapore pass, your in-principle approval letter always plays a significant role in allowing you to arrive in Singapore. Without an in-principle approval letter, no international student or worker will be allowed to enter Singapore.
In principle approval letter is not your pass or permit. It is a letter through which you can obtain your pass by visiting Singapore. Since in-principle approval letter works as a visit visa through which you can travel to Singapore. Once you arrive in Singapore, you will have to prepare all the documents mentioned in the in-principle approval letter and bring the documents to the given address:
Visitor Services Centre ICA Building
10 Kallang Road, Level 4 (next to Lavender MRT Station)
After visiting the address, you will have to complete the formalities related to your pass within the given period, and after you have completed all the formalities, you can collect your Singapore Pass or permit.
Extend your ICA
If, after getting an in-principle approval letter from ICA, you feel that you need some more time to collect your pass. Then you have an option to extend the validity of your in-principle approval letter up to 1 month. Always remember that you can extend your in-principle approval letter only once.
In order to extend the validity of the in-principle-approval letter, you will require to first log in to your WP online account to make the request for an extension of your IPA. Make sure to make the request at least one week prior to the expiry date of your in-principle approval letter.
If you get approved to extend your IPA’s validity, you can get the printout of your Extended IPA online. Hence, in this way, you get one more month to obtain your Singapore pass and permit.
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IPA for foreign workers
In principle approval letter or IPA is a type of document that allows foreign workers to immigrate to Singapore. In principle approval letter is issued by ICA when your Visa and permit is approved. The validity period of your in-principle approval letter will be given in the letter. Within the given validity, you will require to move to Singapore.
Validity of in-principle approval letter
Your in-principle approval letter is only valid for six months from the date it was issued. This means in these six months; you will have to obtain your pass card. However, these six months is enough time for the applicant to receive their Singapore pass card. Also, do not worry if you need any extra time to collect your pass card; you can apply for the extension of the validity of your IPA for one month.
Processing time of obtaining IPA
There is no exact time of receiving the In-principle approval letter from ICA as it depends on the type of application and how much time your application is taking to get processed. However, once your pass or permit application gets approved, you will get an IPA letter to travel to Singapore and obtain the physical pass only if Singapore authorities do not require any additional document. On the other hand, if they require any additional documents, it might take longer to get the IPA letter.
EP application IPA
As of now, the applicant who applied for the employment pass gets an in-principle approval letter once their employment pass application gets approved. The in-principle approval letter provided to the employment pass applicant is valid only for six months. The in-principle approval letter is more like a confirmation that the application for an employment pass has been approved, and now applicants will have to make arrangements to travel to Singapore.
After visiting Singapore, the applicant will require to follow all the instructions given in-principle approval letter. By following the instructions given in the approval letter, the applicant can collect their pass card.
Earlier, the applicants, after arriving in Singapore first required notifying the Ministry of manpower before they start working with their employers. After that, it is the responsibility of the employers to apply for the issuance of a work pass card through employment pass online on behalf of the applicant. Also, at that time, applying for the employment pass was a broader process and took a lot of time to get processed. Employment pass applicants were allowed to work by showing their in-principle approval letter until their employment pass card got issued.
But after March 2015, the Ministry of manpower changes the rule that employment pass applicants will first require to collect their pass cards and start working with their employers. Hence the applicants are no longer allowed to work on IPAs. Now in-principle approval letter is a document used to collect a pass card.
As soon as applicants visit Singapore, they’ll have to quickly start their process of issuing pass cards.
Student pass IPA
If your student pass gets approved, then you will obtain an in-principle approval letter issued by ICA with the enclosed single entry visa to Singapore. This document is just to notify their application is approved, and you can now move to Singapore; by following all the legal formalities, you can collect your student pass card.
You will only be able to collect your student pass card if you fulfill all the requirements given in-principle approval letter. If you need any additional documents to bring with you to Singapore, they will be mentioned on your in-principle approval letter issued by the ICA. Once you arrive in Singapore by showing an in-principle approval letter at the entry port, you will get a single entry visit visa. Also, if there is any fee to be paid to issue the Student pass card, it will be mentioned in the IPA letter.
What is a PR IPA letter?
An in-principle approval letter is an important requirement for the permanent residence applicant. If your PR application is approved, you will get an IPA to enter Singapore as a request for the issuance of a PR card.
What is entre pass IPA letter?
If you are willing to start a business, then it is a straightforward process. First, you need to apply for the Entre Pass; once your Entre Pass is approved, you will get an In-principle approval letter issued by ICA.
- After obtaining the IPA, you will have to register your company. You must register your company in not later than 30 days after obtaining the letter.
- After that, you need to open the bank and deposit the required money.
- After registering the company, do not forget to update the ministry of manpower that you have registered your company.
- Once you have registered your company, you will receive Entre Pass within four days.
FAQs about In-Principle Approval (IPA)
What to do if I changed my mind to hire a worker after receiving in-principle approval for the Work Permit?
If you changed your mind about hiring a working or closed the vacancy, you must cancel the in-principle approval letter.
If you’re canceling your FDW’s IPA, you can cancel it online.
In case you are a business employer willing to cancel your international worker IPA, you can quickly get it done by using WP online.
Once you make the cancellation request, your worker’s In-principle approval letter will be canceled immediately. If a worker is overstaying in Singapore even after their IPA is canceled, then they will have to pay the fine, or the Singapore government might take some legal action against them depending on the situation.
Being an employer, you can have an option to cancel your workers IPA through an employment agency that has submitted the work permit application. You can still check the cancellation request that you do not make.
Is it mandatory for an employment agency to get an employer’s authorization before a cancelation of an in-principle approval (IPA)?
Absolutely yes, without written authorization from the employer, the employment agency cannot submit the in-principle approval cancellation request.
While making the cancellation request on behalf of the employer by visiting WP online, the employment agency has to present proof that they have received the authorization from the employer.
If an employment agency does the unauthorized cancellation, it will be considered offensive.
What if I cancel my In-principle approval, will my Malaysian worker temporary permit will also be canceled?
Yes, if you cancel your in-principle approval, your Malaysian worker’s temporary permit will automatically get canceled.
Can I reinstate an in-principle approval if I accidentally canceled the wrong one?
No, you will again have to submit your application from the first step for the worker in such a situation.
I recently canceled the in-principle approval (IPA) of a worker on a low levy. Why am I being billed a high levy for the period that my worker was holding a Temporary Permit (TP)?
If this happens, your Worker education certificate might not have been approved by the work pass division levy section.
You will require sending your worker educational documents and IPA cancellation letter to the Ministry of manpower in such a situation.
You have to send the documents in not later than two weeks of the cancellation date.
Can I stay in Singapore with a valid IPA?
Your in-principle approval letter is valid only for six months from the date it got issued. In order to collect your pass, you will need to present it in Singapore, and at the given address, you will require showing a copy of your in-principle approval letter, your valid passport, and any other document if mentioned in the in-principle approval letter.
Can I work with IPA?
After the new rules set by the Ministry of manpower, now the applicant can no longer work on the In-Principle Approval (IPA) letter. Now, the employment pass applicant will first be required to issue the employment pass card by showing their in-principle approval letter. Once they have obtained the employment pass card, then only they can start working.
How to apply for FDW IPA?
If you wish to apply for foreign domestic worker then you will require submitting the application online:
- Before starting the application process, you will first be required to obtain written consent from the foreign domestic worker to request the work permit.
- After when you have received the written consent from the foreign domestic worker, you will require logging in to your WP online account and filling up the application form.
- Then you will have to continue the application process by paying $ 35 for every application.
- If you wish to check the status of your application, you can check it by WP online after one week of applicant submission.
How do I check my IPA status?
The validity of your In-principle approval letter will be mentioned in the letter itself. Also, if you wish to check the status of your in-principle approval letter, you can check by WP online without logging.
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