I have a friend who is here on S Pass, he is currently working at an accounting firm that has no career progression, and constantly asks him to work overtime without overtime pay. Is this allowed? - Seedly

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Asked by Anonymous

Asked on 25 Oct 2018

I have a friend who is here on S Pass, he is currently working at an accounting firm that has no career progression, and constantly asks him to work overtime without overtime pay. Is this allowed?

He is trying to get his PR in Singapore, but has failed a couple of times. (He is a Vietnamese) He usually needs to OT because his manager and 2 other colleagues all quit and were not replaced

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Elen Winata
Elen Winata

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Level 2. Rookie
Updated on 07 Jun 2019

I was a foreigner on an S Pass previously too (now a PR). Working overtime without overtime pay is unfortunately very normal and unless the work contract states that extra pay will be given outside working hours, there's not much you can do.

How long has your friend been in Singapore? Length of stay before applying for PR, current salary, as well as achievements in related field count towards getting the PR approved.

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Leong Wen Fong
Leong Wen Fong

25 Oct 2018

Hello, it's actually my friend, he has stayed here for 12 years, from studying in polytechnic till working now, so I don't think that's the issue!
Loh Tat Tian
Loh Tat Tian

25 Oct 2018

They have tighten the rules for PR applications. Unless he's in demand industries or of a certain position and above, it will be hard to be granted PR now. Even S pass application gets tougher each year.
As Df
As Df

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Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 25 Oct 2018

Accounting firms are notorious for OT and unless he's an untrained bookkeeper or the like, he would be considered an executive and exempt from OT.

The only difference S Pass makes is the difficulty in switching jobs but really, if he knows there's no progression and most have left, it's up to him to take ownership of his own career and renegotiate or move on.

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Tina Sharon Lee
Tina Sharon Lee

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Level 3. Wonderkid
Answered on 26 Oct 2018

Accounting firms generally require employees to work long hours. That's a fact of life especially for fresh grads. It is a learning period so try to learn as much as he can whilst servicing his clients. However, he should look for another job if he thinks that he is being exploited and singled out. As for PR, it is pretty tough to get it nowadays. So maybe look elsewhere. Best of Luck

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Png Cheng Xi Damien
Png Cheng Xi Damien, Happy Life Seeker at Home

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Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 25 Oct 2018

The govt will usually look at a few factors when granting PR: wealth, employment, and marriage status. It is a lot easier if married to a Singaporean/PR.

Also if there were many viets who took up PR and went on to abuse it, they may grant lesser PR statuses to viets in general.

If possible, look at a new job, but accounting firms are usually strife with OTs.

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