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Giving birth in Singapore, husband needs to extend SVP

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selenge
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Giving birth in Singapore, husband needs to extend SVP

Postby selenge » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 2:38 am

Hello all,

I am new to singapore and to this forum and this is my first post.

A little background info: Me and my husband are from Mongolia and are here for the sole purpose of giving birth. I am currently 7,5 months pregnant and expecting our first child in early February. We got here on the 30th of October, intend to stay up until about mid March (until the baby is old enough to fly back home).

Now here's the meat of the question. We were granted a social visit pass of 30 days when we entered on the 30th of october. We then both got it extended once through the hospital and right now our SVP expires on the 22nd of December. Simultaneously I applied for the "permission to give birth in singapore" long term visit pass and still waiting for the response on that (they told me it takes upto 6 weeks, its only been about 4 weeks or so). Now since our SVPs are about to expire soon, we went to the hospital today to send our documents for another extension. The documents will be submitted tomorrow and hopefully they will be approved. However, the hospital person told us that last time when they applied for the extension for us, the ICA officer told her that there is no problem for me, but for my husband, officially there is no reason for him to stay with me so they granted him one extension but said they might not do this again. We are still applying and should hear back on it soon and if it DOES get approved, no problem. But what if my husbands doesn't get approved?

As far as I understand there is only one option: Going to Malaysia for a week or so, do some sightseeing and come back hoping that they would issue us a new SVP of 30 days. I did some research and couldn't find any official rules of whether this is permitted or not. I only found on some forums that there is an unwritten rule that says in any 90 days you are only allowed to be in sg for 60 days. Which would basically mean that because we were in singapore for close to 60 days, we would not be allowed back in for at least a month or so. I have no idea if this is true or not. Should we be worried about this? Would we be banned from coming back in and be stuck in Malaysia or deported back to Mongolia? If its all dependent on the ICA officers opinion, what do you guys think our chances are? And furthermore, IF this is perfectly legal and we shouldn't worry about it, how many days is the minimum we should stay out of singapore? I read 5 days somewhere but also cannot confirm if its the truth.

The reason I have all these questions is because when we were first planning our trip, everybody told us "don't worry about the social visit pass. You can either get it extended or if all else fails, just take a day trip to Malaysia and you will be fine." And I was stupid enough to blindly believe them without questioning it. Now that I have done some internet research I am finding that things are not that simple. But maybe they are, I am so confused right now, please help me sort out what is legal and illegal, what kind of regulations do exist or don't exist, and what are our chances if there are no black and white answer.

I am so sorry for the long post, but I thought its best if I describe everything so that people can get a better picture of the situation.

Thank you in advance.

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x9200
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Postby x9200 » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 7:20 am

Unfortunately what you worry about may happen and it happens as it is indeed based on the opinion of the case handling officer. It works roughly this way that more extension you have (including from the short trips abroad) higher the risk you will not be let in.
As I understand you can still move pretty much around so I would suggest both of you to go in person to ICA and talk to an officer (NOT the first contact clerk), explain the situation backing it up with documents from the hospital. You may get or may not get an extension on spot (it can happen) but you will get ICA's view. Providing this view is not very negative and categorical you probably may take the risk of going abroad to extend the visa. If then confronted on the boarder you can show that you had tried to solve the issue earlier contacting ICA. It will of course not guarantee that he will be let in but will make his case a bit stronger. If the view is negative, I think it will be better if your husband flies out of the country and is only back a week or two before your expected date. If he stays, you will need at least 2 more extension.

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Postby beppi » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 5:42 pm

Firs, congratulations on your pregnancy and good luck for your soon-to-be life as family!

It is legal here that any visa matter (SVP and renewal) depends on the opinion of the officer. Since we don't know the officer and his/her reasoning, we can only give advice on the likelihoods. There is no black and white.

I have never heard of SVP renewals beyond 90 days. There might be an exception for pregnant ladies (after all, you are not allowed to fly any more!), but your husband is not pregnant.
Border hopping and coming back immediately or after a few days will NOT work better than sorting out things at ICA (and following their advice strictly). If they say your husband should stay abroad for a month after the current SVP expires, DO SO!
If you are reasonable and cooperative, they will be, too. I am quite sure they will find a solution where your husband can be here for the birth.

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Postby x9200 » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 5:59 pm

beppi wrote:I have never heard of SVP renewals beyond 90 days.

This frankly must happen pretty frequently as many nations got 90 days as a standard entry SVP. As a matter of fact my not yet then wife got an extension of the 90 visa at the counter in ICA when she was waiting for her LTSVP to be approved.

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Postby melissasvn » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 9:09 pm

is that possible if take a trip to malaysia and come back Singapore to extend the SVP? i heard from many ppl said so but still wonderring that is illigal

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 10:08 pm

melissasvn wrote:is that possible if take a trip to malaysia and come back Singapore to extend the SVP? i heard from many ppl said so but still wonderring that is illigal


No one is going to advocate border-hopping or doing visa-runs solely for the purpose and intention of extending your stay in Singapore. That is clearly against the spirit of the law.

You've already been given the very best advice: Go and speak to ICA. They are reasonable people and will try and help you.

p.s. Be prepared for them to ask you some questions like how you can afford to stay in a hotel for 4.5 months. Why neither of you appear to be employed. Why you didn't simply get the applicable visa in the first place, and so on.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 10:25 pm

JR8 wrote:
melissasvn wrote:is that possible if take a trip to malaysia and come back Singapore to extend the SVP? i heard from many ppl said so but still wonderring that is illigal


No one is going to advocate border-hopping or doing visa-runs solely for the purpose and intention of extending your stay in Singapore. That is clearly against the spirit of the law.

You've already been given the very best advice: Go and speak to ICA. They are reasonable people and will try and help you.

p.s. Be prepared for them to ask you some questions like how you can afford to stay in a hotel for 4.5 months. Why neither of you appear to be employed. Why you didn't simply get the applicable visa in the first place, and so on.


JR8 - I think you got your posters confused. Melissasvn is the lady who is trying to get an LTVP to a husband with a low income. Melissa - stick to your own posts please.
Now I'm called PNGMK

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 10:30 pm

Jeez, you're right.

My mistake [sigh]

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Postby selenge » Tue, 18 Dec 2012 11:57 pm

Thank you all very much! this was definitely very helpful.


Considering your advise and after doing some deep thinking about all the risks of our options here's what we think we will do:

1. The documents have already been submitted to the ICA through the hospital. We should hear back from them tomorrow. The hospital usually takes care of this and they act as the local sponsor with pregnant international patients so thats why we did it through them and didn't personally go to ICA. However, if we get bad news, we can definitely go down there and try to explain our situation again. BTW, are we allowed to just go down to ICA after a denial of extension and try to convince otherwise? Or were you guys talking about how we should have gone there personally to submit the application in the first place?

2. Now, if we get an answer that says my husband's visit pass was not extended, we have decided he will go back home for about a month and come back closer to the due date. Although this is not ideal since I will be here alone and very pregnant not to mention the additional airfare, we figured it is still better than trying our luck border hopping. Especially since even if we get lucky once, my husband would need to extend again after 30 days and at that point it might look too suspicious to the ICA officers and we will risk not having him around for the actual birth and first month of the baby. So all in all, I guess having him around for the birth/first month of baby is far more important than having him with me now. Besides, if I am understanding you guys correctly, an ICA officer at the border and an ICA officer for when we apply for extension will look for the same things and if you leave luck out of the equation, if one officer denies it, theoretically the other one will too. And we don't want to try our luck, we just want to do things the correct way.

Thank you all again for your inputs, and if it seems like I missed something please do let me know. I am in general finding this forum to be extremely helpful and have been reading many other useful threads. i will try to start contributing as well.

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Postby x9200 » Wed, 19 Dec 2012 9:14 am

selenge wrote:Thank you all very much! this was definitely very helpful.


Considering your advise and after doing some deep thinking about all the risks of our options here's what we think we will do:

1. The documents have already been submitted to the ICA through the hospital. We should hear back from them tomorrow. The hospital usually takes care of this and they act as the local sponsor with pregnant international patients so thats why we did it through them and didn't personally go to ICA. However, if we get bad news, we can definitely go down there and try to explain our situation again. BTW, are we allowed to just go down to ICA after a denial of extension and try to convince otherwise? Or were you guys talking about how we should have gone there personally to submit the application in the first place?

No problem with going to ICA and also your approach is reasonable. I don't think there would be a major benefit applying in person. What you want to know is what they think. They can be flexible and reasonable. A hospital is a well recognized body so the application process handled by them is also a positive thing.

2. Now, if we get an answer that says my husband's visit pass was not extended, we have decided he will go back home for about a month and come back closer to the due date. Although this is not ideal since I will be here alone and very pregnant not to mention the additional airfare, we figured it is still better than trying our luck border hopping. Especially since even if we get lucky once, my husband would need to extend again after 30 days and at that point it might look too suspicious to the ICA officers and we will risk not having him around for the actual birth and first month of the baby. So all in all, I guess having him around for the birth/first month of baby is far more important than having him with me now. Besides, if I am understanding you guys correctly, an ICA officer at the border and an ICA officer for when we apply for extension will look for the same things and if you leave luck out of the equation, if one officer denies it, theoretically the other one will too. And we don't want to try our luck, we just want to do things the correct way.

It's actually nothing different from majority of the other countries. It is always based on the opinion of the receiving officer. They have to judge what are your husband's real intention on prolonging his stay here. If they would be fully convinced he is here for the delivery and nothing else is going on I am pretty sure his extension could be granted. The problem is that they never can be sure and is difficult to judge on the spot.

Another thing you could try is to get a letter from the hospital backuping the role of your husband, perhaps with the opinion of a doctor that this important for your emotional wellbeing to have his supportive presence during these last months of your pregnancy. ICA is not bind by such opinions but again this works towards making his case stronger.


Thank you all again for your inputs, and if it seems like I missed something please do let me know. I am in general finding this forum to be extremely helpful and have been reading many other useful threads. i will try to start contributing as well.


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