HOW TO SERVE LEGAL PAPERS IN SINGAPORE

This article will guidance on How To Serve legal papers in Singapore. Singapore’s legal system is based on the common law of England. Legal systems are generally based on the decisions of the courts in areas such as administrative and contract law, but certain parts have been adjusted by legislation. Other areas of law, such as criminal law, corporate law, and family law, are nearly entirely statutory.

However, courts continue to look to English case law when dealing with conventional common-law problems or when interpreting Singaporean legislation in light of enactments or statutes from other jurisdictions that are applicable to Singapore. Considerations of key Commonwealth nations, such as Australia and Canada, are increasingly being taken into account, especially if they diverge from English law.

BACKGROUND

In Southeast Asia, Singapore is a sovereign island city-state known as the Republic of Singapore. In recognition of its diverse population and the need to preserve individual cultural identities, Singapore has designated English, Malay, Mandarin, and Tamil as four official languages. The universal language is English. The concept of multiculturalism is firmly rooted in the country’s founding documents, and it continues to influence education, housing, and politics at the federal level.

Singapore is a Westminster-style parliamentary republic. The ultimate law of Singapore is the Constitution, which establishes the government’s structure and responsibilities. As head of state, the president follows the advice of their cabinet in carrying out her duties. This individual is the head of government and is chosen by the president as the person most likely to win the support of the majority of Parliament.” The president officially appoints the prime minister’s cabinet, which is then approved by parliament. 

The president is commander in chief, may veto legislation before it becomes law, and has limited discretionary powers of control over the federal government. Cabinet members are in charge of implementing legislation passed by the legislature. A legislative body, the unicameral Parliament, is responsible for passing legislation, approving budgets, and monitoring government actions.

Judges nominated by the president serve on the Supreme Court and state courts, which settle conflicts between individuals and interpret and reject legislation they deem unconstitutional. Each year, the American people elect a new president to serve a four-year term. In order to be considered for this post, just a few thousand persons are eligible. Constitutionally, if no one from that ethnic group has been elected president in the five most recent terms, then presidential elections must be “reserved” for that ethnic group. Candidates in a reserved presidential election must be members of that community. 

LEGAL SYSTEM IN SINGAPORE

Rather than drawing on English precedents, several Singapore laws take their Singapore Process Service cues from other countries’ legal systems. In these cases, judicial rulings from those countries on the original law are often referred to. 

While this may be true for the interpretation of the Constitution of the Republic of Singapore, courts in Singapore are reluctant to use foreign legal materials because they believe constitutional interpretation should take place within the confines of a country’s own borders and because the political, social, and economic conditions of other countries are not comparable to those in Singapore.

In Singapore, litigation is the most common means of resolving disputes. However, with the development of arbitration competence in Singapore, alternative dispute resolution processes are increasingly being employed in lieu of Singapore Process Service litigation in Singapore.

Singapore’s civil justice system is based on the adversarial paradigm of Common Law. In most civil cases, the Singapore Process Service standard of proof is based on the preponderance of the evidence. The Registry of Courts has put in place an active case management system that enables the courts in Singapore to play a more significant role in avoiding any needless delays in procedures.

In addition, the Singapore International Commercial Court, or SICC, was founded in January 2015 with the primary goal of expanding internationalization and exporting Singapore laws. In addition, the Singapore International Mediation Institute (SIMI) and Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC) were founded in response to the growing importance of alternative conflict resolution in Singapore.

Singapore has a two-tiered judicial system with the  Court of Appeals (which is made up of the Court of Appeal and High Court) and the Courts of Law in the particular State. There are judges and the Chief Justice in Singapore’s High Court, referred to as a “supreme court.” In 1994, Singapore’s Court of Appeal set out to become the country’s highest appellate court. In both criminal and civil cases, appeals from the High Court are handled by the Court of Appeal.

An action for damages above SG$ 250,000 must first be filed in the High Court. As a result, high-value commercial cases in Singapore go straight to the High Court. The High Court does not have any divisions that specialize in a certain sort of Singapore Process Service case. However, the High Court of Singapore has established a specialized list of judges who specialize in certain areas of law to handle complicated business issues in Singapore. 

The Family Justice Court, the District Court, and the Magistrates’ Court are all parts of Singapore’s state courts. The Magistrates’ Court has jurisdiction over matters up to SG$60,000 in value. The District Court, on the other hand, is only interested in claims with a value of less than SG$ 250,000. Family Justice Courts also consider a wide range of issues relating to family law, including but not limited to guardianships and divorces. Situations involving family violence, petitions for deputyship under the Mental Capacity Act, successions, etc.

DOMESTIC PROCESS SERVICE

A civil action may be started in Singapore in one of two methods, depending on the nature of the case.

An original summons must be physically delivered to each defendant in order for the case to proceed. Within six months after the date of the issue, if the defendant is located within the jurisdiction, the summons must be served as per Singapore Process Service. A Pre-Trial Conference (PTC) is initially arranged when the Singapore Process Service summons is filed. This is the point at which the registrar inquires about the current Singapore Process Service status of the activity. Additional Singapore Process Service guidance is provided to parties so that litigation may continue in a fair and timely way. Affidavits are exchanged in advance of trial by both parties in order to describe the evidence that supports their respective positions, and this material is made public.

Unless an intermediate judgment, settlement, or termination summarily resolves the dispute, the case will go to trial. Each side’s Singapore Process Service affidavits are read aloud by witnesses who have been called to testify (if any). The winning party’s lawyer or advocate must give a breakdown of the expenses expended on behalf of the client or a list of costs imposed by the appropriate authority or court to be paid by the other party to the other party after the court proceedings have concluded. In the event that a party wants to enforce a judgment or appeals a judgment, litigation may continue even after the trial.

The Court of Appeal hears appeals from SICC. It is important to remember that the Chief Justice has the authority to designate an International Judge to sit in the Court of Appeal in cases involving orders or judgments of the SICC. The appeals deadline is thirty days from the date of the judgment that has to be challenged or appealed.

Personal service must be performed by an official Singapore Process Service server of the court or by an attorney designated for the Singapore Process Service purpose. If the Registrar decides to enable personal Singapore Process Service to be performed by any other identified person, they will have the Singapore Process Service document marked with a note to that effect on the document needed to be served personally.”

By submitting an electronic filing Singapore Process Service request to authorize user, attorneys must tell the Registry of the clerks authorized to serve Singapore Process Service and documents (hereinafter referred to as “authorized process servers”), and the Registry must be informed. Solicitors will promptly withdraw or destroy the  Singapore Process Service authorization granted to such authorized process servers by means of the Electronic Filing Service in cases where such authorized process servers are no longer so authorized. Solicitors’ clerks do not need permission from the Registrar in order to forward Singapore Process Service and papers on behalf of their clients.

Since a lawyer or a lawyer’s assistant may do personal service, Court process servers will not be appointed to provide a personal service of Singapore Process Service papers unless there are exceptional circumstances. A Request for personal service by a Court process server must be made via the Electronic Filing Service if there are particular Singapore Process Service grounds for doing so, stating those reasons. This kind of Singapore Process Service may only be performed with the permission of the Duty Registrar. The papers for Singapore Process Service must be provided at the counter designated for this purpose after authorization has been granted. A process server will then be appointed to serve the summons, and an appointment time that works for both the litigant and the process server will be set.

The person accompanying the process server must arrive at the Registry on the given day. Alternatively, the process server must be advised that transportation will be provided for them, or pay for their transportation costs must be offered (and a record of this will be retained). After then, the Registry will provide the process server instructions on how to perform Singapore Process Service duties.

No payment should be sent directly to the process server under any circumstances. First, the petitioner must demonstrate to the Court that their suggested method of substituted service would convey the document in dispute to their intended recipient. Before applying to substituted service, two reasonable efforts at personal service should be attempted. An affidavit supporting the applicant’s belief that the efforts to serve were reasonable must accompany any application for alternative service.

As an alternative to or in addition to posting on the doors or gates of residential and commercial properties, the applicant should explore AR registered posts or other methods (such as electronic mail or Internet broadcast). A Singapore Process Service request for substituted service by posting at an address or by AR registered mail should include evidence (for example, the relevant search results from the Singapore Tax Administration, the Singapore Land Administration and Housing & Development Board, or the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority) that the person to be served is either the owner of, resident or can be found at the property.

The postal service is regarded to have delivered the document or tried to deliver the document if it is deemed to have replaced delivery by AR registered post to be effective (in cases where no one is present or willing to accept the document). In the case of substituted service by electronic mail, proof must be provided proving ownership and active status of an email account used for the document delivery.

Even if the person to be served is literate in English, or if their language literacy is unknown, an application for substituted service by ad should only be considered as a last resort and contain evidence that the person to be served is literate in the newspaper in which the advertisement is published.

The publishing of a notice on the Registry of State Courts’ Notice Board is not an acceptable replacement method of serving, just to be clear.

INTERNATIONAL SERVICE OF LEGAL PAPERS IN SINGAPORE

The Hague Service Convention does not include Singapore. The Hague Service Convention does not include Singapore. There is no Singapore Process Service law in Singapore prohibiting serving of process by mail, an agent like a local attorney, or letters rogatory. If a U.S. decision is expected to be enforced in the future, it may be wise for litigants to contact a counsel in Singapore before pursuing a specific manner of Singapore Process Service.

Hague Convention on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil and Commercial Matters: Singapore is a signatory to this treaty. The Supreme Court of Singapore is designated to accept letters requesting the taking of evidence under the Hague Evidence Convention as the central authority in Singapore. Take a look at the Hague Evidence Convention Model Letters of Request for advice on how to write a request letter. The Hague Evidence Convention does not need diplomatic channels for the transmission of Singapore Process Service Requests for the compulsion of evidence from the United States to the Singapore Central Authority. There should be at least two copies of each letter of request and the supporting paper.

Chapter II of the Hague Evidence Convention does not apply to Singapore, which is a signatory to the Convention. As a result, neither consular depositions nor commission depositions are permissible. Submission of a letter of request to the Singapore Central Authority for the Convention allows for depositions. To learn more and to get in touch, visit the Hague Conference website.

The Hague Convention Abolishing the Legalization of Foreign Public Documents does not include Singapore. 

OUR PROCESS

Documents can be faxed at (800) 296-0115, emailed ps@undisputedlegal.com, or uploaded to our website. We do require prepayment and accept all major credit and debit cards. Once payment is processed, your sales receipt is immediately emailed for your records.

Drop-offs must call and make an appointment first to be added to building security to permit access to our office. Documents for service must be in a sealed envelope with payment in the form of a money order or attorney check (WE DO NOT ACCEPT CASH) payable to UNDISPUTED LEGAL INC.; All documents will be received by our receptionist.

DOMESTIC COVERAGE AREAS:

Alaska | Alabama | Arkansas | Arizona | California | Colorado | Connecticut | District of Columbia | Delaware | Florida | Georgia | Hawaii | Iowa | Idaho | Illinois | Indiana | Kansas | Kentucky | Louisiana | Maryland | Massachusetts | Maine | Michigan | Minnesota | Mississippi | Missouri | Montana | North Carolina | North Dakota | Nebraska | New Hampshire | New Jersey | New Mexico | Nevada | New York | Ohio | Oklahoma | Oregon | Pennsylvania | Rhode Island | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Texas | Utah | Virginia | Vermont | Washington | West Virginia | Wisconsin | Wyoming

INTERNATIONAL COVERAGE AREAS:

Albania | Andorra | Anguilla | Antigua | Argentina | Armenia | Australia | Austria | Azerbaijan | Bahamas | Barbados | Belarus | Belgium | Belize | Bermuda | Bosnia and Herzegovina | Botswana | Brazil | British Honduras | British Virgin Islands | Bulgaria | Canada | Cayman Islands | Central and Southern Line Islands | Chile|China (Macao) | China People’s Republic | Colombia | Costa Rica | Country of Georgia | Croatia | Cyprus | Czech Republic | Denmark | Dominican Republic | Ecuador | Egypt | Estonia | Falkland Islands and Dependences | Fiji | Finland | France | Germany | Gibraltar | Gilbert and Ellice Islands | Greece | Guernsey | Hong Kong | Hungary | Iceland | India | Ireland | Isle of Man | Israel | Italy | Jamaica | Japan | Jersey Channel Islands | Jordan | Kazakhstan | Korea | Kuwait | Latvia | Lithuania | Luxembourg| Malawi | Malaysia | Malta | Mauritius | Mexico| MonacoMontenegro | Montserrat | Morocco | Namibia | Netherlands | New Zealand |Nicaragua | Norway | Pakistan | Panama | Paraguay | Peru | Philippines | Pitcairn |Poland| Portugal | Republic of Moldova | Republic of North Macedonia | Romania |Russian Federation | Saint Vincent and the Grenadines | San Marino | Saudi Arabia | Serbia | Seychelles | Singapore| Slovakia | Slovenia | South Africa | Spain | Sri Lanka | St. Helena and Dependencies | St. Lucia | Sweden | Switzerland | Taiwan | Thailand | Tunisia | Turkey | Turks and Caicos Islands| UkraineUnited Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland | Uruguay | US Virgin Islands | Uzbekistan | Venezuela | Vietnam

OFFICE LOCATIONS

New York: (212) 203-8001 – 590 Madison Avenue, 21st Floor, New York, New York 10022
Brooklyn: (347) 983-5436 – 300 Cadman Plaza West, 12th Floor, Brooklyn, New York 11201
Queens: (646) 357-3005 – 118-35 Queens Blvd, Suite 400, Forest Hills, New York 11375
Long Island: (516) 208-4577 – 626 RXR Plaza, 6th Floor, Uniondale, New York 11556
Westchester: (914) 414-0877 – 50 Main Street, 10th Floor, White Plains, New York 10606
Connecticut: (203) 489-2940 – 500 West Putnam Avenue, Suite 400, Greenwich, Connecticut 06830
New Jersey: (201) 630-0114 – 101 Hudson Street, 21 Floor, Jersey City, New Jersey 07302
Washington DC: (202) 655-4450 – 2200 Pennsylvania Avenue, 4 Fl East, Washington DC 20037

for assistance serving legal papers in Singapore

Simply pick up the phone and call Toll-Free (800) 774-6922 or click the service you want to purchase. Our dedicated team of professionals is ready to assist you. We can handle all your process service needs; no job is too small or too large!

Contact us for more information about our process serving agency. We are ready to provide service of process to all our clients globally from our offices in New York, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Westchester, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Washington D.C.

“Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives”– Foster, William A

Sources

1. This is because the Evidence Act (Cap.97, 1997 Rev. Ed.) and the Penal Code (Cap 224, 2008 Rev. Ed.) were both written in the Indian language and based on Indian legislation.

2. The Internal Security Act (Cap. 143) and the Societies Act (Cap. 311), both of which were passed under British administration in Singapore, remain in the statute book, and both corporal and death punishment are still in effect, despite the fact that both laws were written during British authority.

3. U.S. Embassy Singapore

27 Napier Road

Singapore 258508

Telephone: +(65) 6476-9100

Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(65) 6476-9100

Fax: +(65) 6476-9232

Email: singaporeacs@state.gov

4. Inquiries from Singapore for US Evidence: The Office of International Judicial Assistance, Civil Division, Department of Justice, 1100 L Street N.W., Room 8102, Washington, D.C. 20530, is the U.S. central authority for the Hague Evidence Convention.

5. By contacting the U.S. Department of State Authentication Office and then having the seal of the U.S. Department of State verified by the Embassy of Singapore in Washington, D.C., documents issued in the United States may be authenticated for use in Singapore. The appointed state authority, often the state Secretary of State, must first certify documents issued in U.S. states.

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