Immigration Update 

August, 2021 - Suganthi Singam, Chui Siew Xuan

Home Quarantine Now Possible for Ex-Patriates

Imagine having the permission to work in a foreign country and yet being unable to do so as you are prohibited from entry. That has been the dilemma faced by many ex patriates who hold Employment Passes but have been unable to enter Malaysia due to the current restrictions in place.

The present prohibition on entry does not augur well for the revival of the economic sector and yet a balance is needed to be maintained in addressing the wellbeing of the citizens. The requirements for quarantine have now seen some form of relaxation where a home quarantine is potentially possible for expatriates who have made Malaysia their home over their years of employment.

Based on the recent government announcement in relation to home quarantine (effective from 10 August 2021), the government has set out the following requirements for home quarantine:

  • A non-Malaysian who has returned or arrived from overseas must have a suitable place of residence to undergo the home quarantine in Malaysia (Note: There is currently no specific guideline on what amounts to a “suitable residence” as it is decided at the discretion of the Ministry of Health representatives. Representatives from the Ministry of Health are to undertake a Q&A session with the individual on arrival in Malaysia about the conditions of the residence, that is, the number of rooms of the residence, the number of individuals living at the same residence, their respective ages and their health conditions as well as whether there is an ensuite bathroom for the purposes of the home quarantine. The ex patriate must download the MySejahtera application and ensure that he/she has completed the health declaration form prior to arrival in Malaysia.

  • The ex-patriate must be fully vaccinated (Note: By “fully vaccinated”, the reference is to those who have received either: Two doses of Pfizer, AstraZeneca and Sinovac and completing 14 days after the date of the second dose; or One dose of Johnson & Johnson and CanSino and completing 28 days after the date of the vaccination.

  • The individual must show proof of a valid negative RT- PCR test undertaken three days before departure. (Note: The RT-PCR test must be undertaken by a certified laboratory, or a medical report issued by a registered medical The second RT-PCR test will be carried out at the International Entry Point.)

  • The individual must possess a complete and valid COVID-19 vaccination certificate.

  • The individual must have no symptoms exhibited during the health clearance conducted at the International Entry Point.

An expatriate who intends to undergo home quarantine must first apply for the home quarantine via email to [email protected]. The following documents must be attached in the same email for the consideration of the home quarantine application:

  • The expatriate's Employment Pass;
  • The vaccination certificate as proof of full vaccination; and
  • Proof of residence in Malaysia.

The expatriate will be notified of the outcome of the home quarantine application by email. Upon arrival in Malaysia, the expatriate who exhibits no Covid-19 symptoms will be permitted to undertake the second RT-PCR test. If the individual exhibits light Covid-19 symptoms, he/she will be required to undertake either the RTK-AG test or RT-PCR test. However, if the expatriate exhibits moderate or severe Covid- 19 symptoms, the individual will be referred to the infectious disease expert for further assessment.

According to the Standard Operating Procedures of the Ministry of Heath, the individual will be given a digital Home Surveillance Order for his/her home quarantine. The individual is required to wear the quarantine wristband or electronic digital tracker during the entire period of the home quarantine. The individual must also complete the Home Assessment Tool (“HAT”) found in the MySejahtera application on a daily basis. Notwithstanding the issuance of the Covid-19 vaccination certification, the expatriate will still be subjected to the mandatory quarantine period of 14 days (21 days for travellers from India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan). The underlying rationale for this requirement being that although the individual has been fully vaccinated the risk factor is still prevalent and hence the need to exercise precaution.

On the 10th day of the mandatory quarantine period, the individual is required to take the RT-PCR test (18th day for the expatriate who needs to undergo home quarantine for 21 days). If the RT-PCR result is negative the ex patriate will be issued a “Release Order” via the MySejahtera application on the 14th day of the quarantine period. He/She is required to go to the nearest District Health Office to have the quarantine wristband cut. The quarantine period of 14 days may be extended to 21 days depending on the risk assessment conducted on the 10th day.

Re-activation of the MM2H Programme

The long awaited Malaysia My Second Home “MM2H” has seen a beacon of light injected with the recent announcement of Datuk Wan Ahmad Dahlan Abdul Aziz, Home Ministry Secretary-General, on the re-activation of the MM2H Programme as part of the initiative to boost the economy under the National Recovery Plan. The programme which was previously under the purview of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture of Malaysia will now be under the purview of the Immigration Department of Malaysia commencing from October 2021.

As an enhanced security measure, only applicants with no criminal records will be eligible to apply for the MM2H programme subject to fulfilling all other requirements. The reactivation of the progamme has also brought about additional stringent requirements for eligibility including but not limited to the introduction of a cap on the number of participants, including the principal and their dependents at any one time to be not more than 1% of the total Malaysian population. As this reactivation has only been recently announced there may well be a refining of criteria and qualifications in the months to come.

The re-activation of the MM2H Programme has brought about some drastic changes to the initial MM2H Programme in Malaysia as follows :

Previous conditions

Current conditions


Participants must reside in Malaysia for at least 90 cumulative days in a year to ensure they truly contribute to the Malaysian economy in terms of property rentals or purchases, healthcare services, insurance, education, food, and drinks as well as domestic tourism.

Participants or spouses who are aged 35 – 49 are subject to an additional requirement of RM50,000 in fixed deposit required for each dependant – wife, children, parents, or in-laws.

Participants were required to have an offshore monthly income of at least RM10,000.

Participants are required to have an offshore monthly income of at least RM40,000.

For participants above 50 years old, the fixed savings account must be RM150,000.

For 50 years old and below, the fixed savings account must be RM300,000.

Participants must have fixed deposit accounts with a minimum of RM1mil, where 50% maximum withdrawal from a principal amount is allowed for the purposes of buying property, health services and children’s education.

The categories were divided into the participants who were of the age of 50 years old and above and those aged below 50 years.

Previously, the minimum age of the participant was 21 years old.

The categories are divided into those aged between 35 to 49 and those aged 50 and above.

Participants were required to have liquid assets of RM350,000 and RM500,000 according to their respective categories.

Participants need to make an asset declaration and prove that they own liquid assets of at least RM1.5m.

MM2H Programme LTSVP was granted for 10 years.

The validity period of the MM2H programme LTSVP is now set to 5 years and can be extended for another 5 years subject to the criteria of the application.

No processing fee was charged.

The rate of the pass fees is charged at RM500 a year.

RM5,000 processing fee will be charged for the principal and RM2,500 will be charged for each dependant.


For renewal of passes, change of principals, change in nationality, the participants and the dependants must undergo and pass security vetting and must submit a Letter of Good Conduct for the participants and the dependants.








This article was co-written by Suganthi Singam and Chui Siew Xuan.

Should you have any enquires, please contact Suganthi Singam at [email protected].


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