The Special Pass can only be issued to foreign citizens who cannot leave Malaysia by the date of expiry of their visa document due to unpredictable circumstances. It is a temporary pass issued by Malaysia’s Immigration Department, valid for 30 days. It is given to foreigners and expats who have not yet renewed their employment or student visas in Malaysia and have yet to leave the country. The Special Pass is issued only to applicants with acceptable reasons. Therefore, foreign nationals should apply for the Special Pass at least 7 days before the visa expiry date.
It is a criminal offense for any expatriate to remain in Malaysia beyond the expiration date of their visa without the necessary authorization or documents. Upon conviction, the applicant will be liable to detention and a fine imposed by the Malaysian Immigration Department.
A Malaysia Special Pass is issued by the Department of Immigration, which allows foreign nationals to remain in Malaysia for an extended time, even if their visa has not been renewed, or they have not left the country when the expiration date passes. To be eligible for a Malaysian Special Pass, applicants must provide an acceptable reason for their stay, and in the past, only two reasons have been accepted:
- Making Arrangements to Leave the Country
- Pending Approval of an Employment or Student Pass
The Department of Immigration has prohibited expatriates from validating or renewing their Pass under the Malaysia Special Pass during their stay in Malaysia. Once you receive the Pass, you must leave Malaysia for 30 days.
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Who is required to apply for the Malaysia Special Pass?
Under the new regulations launched by the Ministry of Immigration, foreign nationals are eligible to apply for Malaysian special passes if they can demonstrate and provide a compelling reason why they are unable to leave Malaysia by the expiry date of their existing Pass. The nature of the current Pass of the foreign national is not relevant, and they may apply for a special pass regardless of the type of Pass they have Visa pass, employment pass, student pass, etc. Obtaining a Malaysia special pass is impossible if the foreign national has not applied to renew their current Pass at the correct time.
Furthermore, foreigners attempting to convert their student pass to an Employment pass cannot obtain a special pass. As explained above, the only way foreign nationals receive a special pass is to provide proof that they are arranging for their exit from Malaysia. If the foreign national wishes to apply for a new pass but does not have enough time on their current Pass, the only solution is to leave Malaysia and reapply. However, foreign nationals who wish to find out if they can apply for a Special Pass must email us to our website and request information.
Expatriates’ Reasons to Get a Special Pass
There are two main reasons why expats can be eligible for the Special Pass, as mentioned:
Making Arrangements to Exit Malaysia
This type of special Pass allows the foreign national to stay in Malaysia for 30 days. For instance, a foreigner cannot leave Malaysia before the expiry of their current Pass. A special Pass gives the foreign national more time to prepare to leave the country without being penalized. The foreign national must submit a copy of the flight itinerary showing the intention to leave the country and the departure date from Malaysia. The validity of the special Pass may be extended to the intended departure date if approved.
Pending Approval of an Employment or Student Pass
You can also apply for a special pass if you renew your work pass or another related pass in Malaysia (until the decision on your renewal application is made) for 30 days after the expiry date. In this case, you must prove that your Pass application is ongoing.
You can apply for another Special Pass if you cannot complete your renewal application during the expiry date of the Special Pass. However, you must provide proof (e.g., a copy of your flight ticket) to prove that you will leave Malaysia at the end of your second Special Pass application.
What are the documents required to obtain a Malaysia Special Pass?
To apply for Malaysia Special Pass, expatriates must collect and submit certain documents, including but not limited to:
- Passport valid for 3 months before departure
- Additionally, they may be requested to provide copies of their previous passports if they can access them.
The expatriate must have any dependents if they are residing abroad:
- Expats must provide a copy of their passport, including the details page, and their current immigration document. In this instance, the primary Pass holder is the expatriate.
- For spouses: A marriage certificate
- For a dependent child: Birth certificate
- For the dependent parent: A birth certificate of the primary Pass holder
- Flight reservations within the next 30 days.
- A written document contains the full reasons for applying for a Special Pass.
Can I get a Malaysia Special Pass?
The Malaysian Immigration Department processes Malaysian Special Passes. You need to appear before them before the expiry date of your current Pass. You must extend your current Pass and request the Malaysia Special Pass application. Furthermore, you must apply at least seven days before your current Pass expiring date.
International students can request the application for the Malaysian Special Pass on their behalf, but they must pay all the expenses associated with the Special Pass. Foreign workers should talk to their employer about who needs to apply for the Malaysia Special Pass, and in many cases, their employer obtains the special Pass on their behalf.
What are the consequences of overstaying in Malaysia?
If you remain in Malaysia after the expiry date of your Pass, you will be considered to have overstayed in Malaysia. Overstaying is a criminal offense in Malaysia and is punishable by detention and a fine. The Immigration Department of Malaysia issues your punishment.
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