Obtain a Residence Permit in Malaysia

Updated on Thursday 27th April 2017

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Foreigners who have been living in Malaysia for a certain period and by observing the local laws and regulations may apply for permanent residency and citizenship in Malaysia. The status of permanent resident offers a number of advantages, among which the ability to reside in the country for an indefinite period of time, without any visa requirements, the ability to work and open a business in Malaysia and acquire property here.

One of our lawyers in Malaysia can assist you during the application procedure if you meet one of the applicable eligibility requirements.

Who can apply for permanent residency in Malaysia?

Individuals who wish to apply for a permanent residence status in Malaysia must qualify for one of the following:

- high net worth individuals: open a bank account in Malaysia and deposit at least 2 million USD without withdrawing for five years; the spouse and children of the applicant may also apply for a permanent resident status after a period of five years;
- highly skilled or talented individuals: available for a number of industries, applicants must provide a certificate of good conduct and make the application with the Immigration Department;
- professionals: similar to the previous category, these are individuals who have outstanding skills and have a recommendation from a relevant Malaysian authority; 
- the spouse of a Malaysia citizen: individuals married to a Malaysia citizen may apply for permanent residency if they are married for at least five years and they have also lived in the country during this time;
- based on the points system: a minimum number of points obtained during their stay in the country allows foreigners to apply for permanent residency status.

Additional requirements may apply for these categories of applicants. You can talk to an expert at a law firm in Malaysia for clarifications according to your particular situation.

What is the residence permit application method?

When you are eligible for permanent residency according to the categories described above you must submit a proper application form with the Immigration Department. The applicant and his sponsor (if applicable, usually for the 5th category) are usually required to attend an interview with the Department.

The experts at our law office in Malaysia can answer your questions regarding immigration, naturalization and other conditions for foreigners living in the country.

You can contact us for more information and advice.


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