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Official Publication of The Law Society of Singapore | January 2017

MCI (P) 082/11/2016


Opening of the Legal Year 2017 (Part 1)

This was the speech delivered by the President at the Opening of the Legal Year on
9 January 2017. It will be published in two parts. Part 2 will be published in February.
Introduction 3. 2016 heralded significant appointments in the Supreme
1. May it please Your Honours, Chief Justice, Attorney-
General, Judges of Appeal, Judges, and Judicial a. Reappointment of Justice Chao Hick Tin as a Judge
Commissioners. of Appeal with effect from 11 April 2016.

Welcome b. Appointment of Justice Judith Prakash and Justice

Tay Yong Kwang as Judges of Appeal with effect
2. First, let me extend a warm welcome to our overseas from 1 August 2016.
c. Appointment of Pang Khang Chau and Audrey Lim
a. Steven Thiruneelakandan, President, Malaysian Yoon Cheng as Judicial Commissioners for a period
Bar of three years with effect from 1 August 2016.

b. Fiona McLeod, SC, President, Law Council of And as a harbinger of announcements on the AGCs
Australia side with effect from 14 January 2017, we welcome the
Appointment of Lucien Wong as Attorney-General as
c. Rozaiman Abdul Rahman, President, Law Society well as the appointment of Kwek Mean Luck and Mavis
of Brunei Darussalam Chionh as Solicitor-General and Second Solicitor-
General respectively.
d. Yamaguchi Kenichi, President, Osaka Bar
Association, Japan 4. Judge of Appeal Judith Prakash is the first woman to
be appointed as a permanent member of our apex
e. U Sein Win Chan, President, Independent Lawyers' Court and an eminent jurist in company law. Counsel
Association of Myanmar appearing before her received education in precision in
language, tutelage in Court decorum and the sometime
f. Amirali Nasir, Vice-President, Law Society of Hong sartorial disapprobation. On occasion, all three lessons
Kong in one sitting.

g. Will Alstergren QC, Vice-President Australian Bar 5. Judge of Appeal Tay Yong Kwang combines an
Association exceptional expertise in both criminal law (serving as a
member of the Sentencing Council) and civil law matters
h. Mrs Lee Suet Fern, representing Dinesh Bhaskaran, (notably, chairing the Civil Justice Commission). His
President of the Inter-Pacific Bar Association elevation to the Court of Appeal brings a dual depth to
our appeal bench.

Continued on page 4

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Presidents Opening of the Legal Year 2017 (Part 1) 01


News Diary and Upcoming Events 07

From the Desk of the CEO 08
Law Society Dinner & Dance 2016 09
Citation for CC Tan Award 2016 10
CC Tan Award Acceptance Speech 12

Features Results of the 2016 Singapore Law Gazette Awards 20

Stare Decisis and ARs 22
Digital Library Available for Members' Use at No Cost 26
Reporting Suspicions The Role of Lawyers in Singapore in the Flight Against
Money Laundering 28
The Family Lawyer of Tomorrow 35

Columns Ethics in Practice Placing the Civil into an Adversarial Process 39

Running Your Practice Technology and Data as Lawyers' Allies
From Data to Insights 41
The Young Lawyer Amicus Agony 44
Practice Support Traffic Accident Reconstruction 46

Lifestyle Alter Ego New Year Wishes 52

Food Feast with Ease 54

Notices Information on Wills 57

Appointments 58

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Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Continued from page 1

6. Judicial Commissioner Pang Khang Chau served as Secretariat was subsequently established from 1989
State Counsel in the Civil Division of the AGC, Deputy onwards.
Director, Legal Policy Division of Ministry of Law and
latterly, Director-General of the International Affairs 14. The 1990s saw the Law Society playing a pivotal role in
Division, AGC prior to his judicial appointment. modernising the profession and community protection.
LawNet in 1990. Mandatory professional indemnity
7. Judicial Commissioner Audrey Lim previously served in cover from 1991 onwards. In 1998, a new Code of
the court and AGC in both criminal and civil matters. Conduct promulgated for lawyers later revised in 2001
Prior to holding judicial office, she was Deputy Chief for better client care. From 2004 onwards, a stronger
Legislative Counsel in the AGC. framework to protect clients money.

8. Attorney-General VK Rajah will complete a stellar and 15. Today, the legal landscape is more complex compared
distinguished career in public service from Bench to our small beginnings. LLPs and LLCs are no longer
to the AGC. As AG, he earned a solid reputation for novel and foreign lawyers and foreign law firms are here
just and compassionate decisions and broadened to stay. The local-foreign coupling run the gamut from
the prosecutorial philosophy of the Chambers. Under formal law alliances to joint law ventures to mergers.
his watch, AGC successfully negotiated significant The Legal Services Regulatory Authority licences
international agreements for the Singapore government. Singaporean and foreign law practices. Technology
Time would fail me to properly expound on AGs challenges impact and disrupt traditional forms of legal
achievements both in the judiciary and as AG in this practice.
speech. The Bar will do the honours on a fitting, future
occasion. 16. A major milestone in pro bono was the establishment
of the Societys Pro Bono Services Office (PBSO) in
9. We welcome AG-elect Lucien Wong, top corporate August 2007. The Societys CLAS, Project Law Help
lawyer and latterly, Chairman and Senior Partner of and Law Awareness programmes were subsumed
Allen & Gledhill who strongly distinguished himself in under PBSO. Besides enhanced CLAS, our dedicated
corporate practice. We are sure that he will bring his PBSO department catalyzed manifold access to justice
formidable intellect, meticulous professionalism and initiatives including:
creative legal mind to public service -stamping his own
inimitable style on the office. a. the annual Law Awareness Week in collaboration
with all five Community Development Councils;
10. On behalf of my Council, I extend my congratulations
and best wishes to the new appointees on all their b. Project Schools;
appointments. The Bar has no doubt they will discharge
their duties with distinction. c. Community Legal Clinics; and

11. In this golden jubilee address, I will touch on three broad d. a LegaleSE guide for non-profits.
points in this speech: history, honour and hope.
I am pleased that all five of the largest law firms recently
History reaffirmed their support of our CLAS Fellowship
programme in 2017. The Law Ministrys financial boost
12. First, a snapshot of history. The Society started life as of our Enhanced CLAS Scheme has enabled a world of
the Singapore Advocates and Solicitors Society in 1967 difference and a difference to the world of many indigent
in post-independence Singapore. 50 years ago, we litigants.
were only 259 in number compared to our 5,100 lawyers
today. A sub-committee comprising C C Tan, Lee Kim 17. In summary, the journey of the Law Society has been
Yew and the late Justice Punch Coomaraswamy crafted inextricably intertwined with the history, needs and
the wording of the Legal Profession Act. collective zeitgeist of Singapores legal profession and
society itself at different stages of our nations history.
13. The first gleam of the crown jewel of the Law Society, The Society organised itself purposefully from time to
the Criminal Legal Aid Scheme (CLAS), appeared in time to stay relevant to an enduring statutory purpose
1985. After appointing Mr Patrick Nathan in 1983 as our of our Society namely to protect and assist the public in
first Executive Secretary, a professional Law Society all matters touching or ancillary or incidental to the law.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Jubilee Celebration Events look forward to the continued indelible imprint that pro
bono practitioners will have on Singapores societal
18. As part of our jubilee celebrations, we will organise fabric as we do good better via LSPBS. More than a
three flagship conferences: pro bono structure however is a pro bono culture. This
culture has been strongly embraced by small law firms
a. Litigation Conference 2017 (20 and 21 April 2017) who have punched well above their weight. As an
illustration, our Pro Bono Ambassadors (apart from an
A signature annual event for litigation practitioners, inaugural outlier) have hailed from the small law firms.
this years theme is 50 Years On Thinking
Forward touching on the changing landscape of 21. We also aim to secure additional Premises. Vice-
litigation now and the future. President, Adrian Tan, will spearhead the search for the
promised land based on our members mandate during
b. Future Lawyering Conference in July our AGM last year. If we choose wisely, we will be able
to grow the Societys assets, while saving on rental
In this conference, we will explore technology costs.
disruptors and legal practice, future growth
markets, new practice models, alternative business 22. Just Jubilee is our pro bono awareness anniversary
structures, (including multi-disciplinary practice), event cum major charity fund-raiser for the year
regionalisation and branding and marketing of legal spearheaded by Council Member, Tito Isaac. At this
practice. platform, we will officially launch our new LSPBS charity.

c. International Conference of Legal Regulators (5 Honour

and 6 October 2017)
23. When we excessively focus on history, we could be
Hosted in Asia for the first time, this will be jointly seduced by empty euphoria or false nostalgia. As
organised by the Ministry of Law and the Law you reminded us in your Opening of the Legal Year
Society of Singapore. Response in 2014, Chief Justice, the Singapore psyche
has never countenanced resting on laurels. One
19. Fiat Justicia: 50 Years of the Law Society of Singapore progressive way of learning from history is reclaiming
is an important keepsake, crowdfunded by the the vital value of honour in the profession. Significantly,
profession that will be distributed gratis to all members. the Singapore Academy of Law chose the motto
We specially commissioned Professor Kevin Tan Honor est in Honorante being Latin for Honour is
to author this tome. It will do better justice and more in honouring. One is honourable through the honour
comprehensive coverage of the epochal events he or she bestows onto others. George Bernard Shaw
of our short history than my earlier speedy review. wrote The most tragic thing in the world is a man of
This commemorative book will be an intellectually genius who is not a man of honor.
honest chronicle of the highlights and lowlights of the
profession. 24. Through our annual C C Tan Award, we recognise a
practitioner who best exemplifies the finest and noble
Another momentous milestone this year is the virtues of the legal profession. Honesty, fair play,
incorporation of the Pro Bono Services Office as a Law gentlemanliness and personal integrity. Through this
Society subsidiary called The Law Society Pro Bono award the highest award of the Society we honour
Services Ltd (LSPBS) with the Law Society as sole the honourable.
member. This structural reorganisation will rationalise,
streamline and enhance oversight of the Law Societys 25. In this semi-centennial year, we will go further than that.
access-to-justice mission for the coming decades. We will honour our pioneers. Yesteryears trailblazers
This will remain our outstretched helping hand the deserve remembrance; they will not be forgotten. We
composite hand of every single volunteer lawyer from will honour them in our Singapore Law Gazette and at
the Law Society. That hand will reach out to needy appropriate settings this year.
individuals and corporations who require access to
justice. I am very grateful for the pro bono legal services 26. We also need to honour the highest ethical standards.
of Allen & Gledhill and Morgan, Lewis Stamford in As officers of the Court, we will honour the Courts we
playing the midwifery role in birthing the LSPBS. We practise in. We speak of rights of audience but in truth,

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


it is the privilege of audience. While there will always be 29. We need to give honour where honour is due. One of
a few black sheep in our midst, thankfully, this number the more outstanding commendations I have read in
needing to be policed, to fulfill our self-regulatory role, recent times was in an email sent to Your Honour Chief
do not represent the majority of the Bar. Justice in late October last year. I quote parts of the
same, with the writers permission:
27. Part of honouring the highest ethical standards this
year includes upping our game in family bar ethics. In an era where exceptional one-to-one customer
To that end, amendments are in the offing to the Legal service excellence has virtually disappeared from
Profession (Professional Conduct Rules) for Family our society, the work that Ms Lalitha did should be
and Related Proceedings for submission to the PCC held up as an example for others to try to emulate.
(Working Group) chaired by Justice Steven Chong. The
broad objective of these amendments is to: (a) reduce What particularly impressed me about the level of
the adversarial nature of family proceedings by service provided by Ms Lalitha was that there were no
ensuring practitioners consider and advise their clients additional financial rewards involved. It appears that
on alternative dispute resolution options; and (b) ensure it was simply Ms Lalithas extraordinary commitment
that the interests of any children involved in family to excellence in customer service and support that
proceedings are considered by practitioners. motivated her to always go the extra mile. Her
example had given a very positive impact on the
28. In 2015, Your Honour accepted the recommendations attitude and productivity of your fellow colleagues in
in the Study Committee report under the Professional this profession.
Affairs Committee of the SAL chaired by Justice Quentin
Loh. The Inappropriate Conduct in Court (or ICC) She truly makes the name of your profession fly high
regime has been implemented since 1 September with repute and dignity.
last year. Although more nuanced and proportionate,
the redemptive emphasis of this regime necessitates Ms Lalitha Seenivasan sounded a little embarrassed
behavioural reform. This legal profession equivalent of when I called to commend her on this kudos last year.
a yellow card in soccer is no less a serious disciplinary But this is the exemplar in client standards that we need
matter. It is only a relatively kinder and gentler measure to showcase. It is refreshing good news that serves as
when compared to other escalation alternatives. Yet a morale-booster for the profession. But it is more than
on some occasions, I suggest that a verbal chiding a feel good moment in the corridors of time. These are
or rebuke in Court (not necessarily memorialized in a the gold standards in client care to emulate during our
written judgment) could do the trick. No serious litigator golden jubilee year.
ever forgets his or her judicial reprimands. Instead
of ICC, the Courts chastening correction could be a Gregory Vijayendran
moment of epiphany on ones blind spots and a real President
time reality check. The Law Society of Singapore

Notice of Change of Particulars

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aspx) whenever there is any change in the particulars relating to your practice, eg if you move from one law practice to
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Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Diary and Upcoming Events

7 December 2016
Visit by the Union Attorney-General of Myanmar, Mr U Tun Tun Oo
Otto Ristorante, Maxwell Chambers

Upcoming Events
7 March 2017
Seminar on Understanding and Negotiating Cloud Contracts
22 March 2017
Branding Workshop for Law Practices
20 & 21 April 2017
Litigation Conference 2017
28-29 April 2017
Annual Malaysia/Singapore Bench
RAV0002-Ad 2_080213_noi.pdf 1 & Bar Games
2/13/13 2017
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Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

CEO's Message

From the Desk of the CEO

Dear Members,

I am humbled and honoured to be assuming this role at to corporatise PBSO which has scaled up its operations
a time when the Law Society is stepping up in a big way as more of our big-hearted members make available their
for its members. As our Law Society President reminds time and resources to offer legal aid to the less privileged.
me, being the CEO of the Law Society Secretariat does not Members can also look forward to collecting memorabilia
just require IQ but even more so EQ. Whatever I failed to specially produced to commemorate the occasion.
pick up from law school in Cambridge, the School of Hard
Knocks certainly drove home to me the point that people are The jubilee year presents us the perfect opportunity to
more important than things and ones success is intimately remind the public that we belong to an honourable profession
connected to that of ones team-mates. I hope to create a who delivers trusted advice to each and every client. CPD
working environment at Secretariat where each and every will continue to roll out courses not just on areas of legal
employee can grow to fulfill his or her potential, where practice but also on ethical standards and business skills.
bosses are also coaches and mentors, and professional We are currently reviewing our Practice Directions and
courtesy is not just preached to members but practised by Guidance Notes to ensure they are updated and relevant.
Secretariat staff at all levels. Our website will be revamped soon as we strive to make
it more user-friendly for both our members as well as the
In my previous role as the Director of Representation and public.
Law Reform, I led the Legal Industry Needs Study which
was funded by Minlaw to ascertain the technology and Do keep a lookout for my message in the next issue so you
capability needs of small and mid-sized law firms. It was can be apprised of our activities and be able to reap the full
a learning journey for my team as many of our members benefits of your membership. If you are reading this and are
graciously shared their wealth of experience at focus not yet our member, do consider joining us as an Associate
groups and one-to-one interviews. The findings of the study Member or a Non-Practitioner Member. Whether you are a
have been shared by President in his OLY Speech. We are foreign lawyer or an in-house legal counsel, we would love
now at the implementation phase of our Action Plan and to hear your views and learn from your experiences. You
will be announcing more details very shortly. For instance, can also enjoy the exchange of ideas with our local lawyers,
our members from small and mid-sized law firms can look participate in consultations of draft legislation and volunteer
forward to adopting certain IT solutions with attractive for one of our many Committees.
financial support from SPRING.
It now leaves me to wish all of you a very happy and
2016 also saw several legislative amendments for the prosperous new year ahead!
benefit of our members, such as i-voting, changes to the
membership categories and a more flexible potential use of
the surplus from our Compensation Fund. We have written Delphine Loo Tan
to Minlaw to suggest additional legislative amendments Chief Executive Officer
to further unlock value from our Compensation Fund and The Law Society of Singapore
will continue to keep an eye on developments affecting
our profession that warrant legislative amendments. We
provided feedback on the Administration of Justice Bill and
will continue to do so for other draft legislation.

This year, we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Law

Society. Our members are invited to take part in a whole
host of events lined up for the jubilee celebrations. It is timely

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner & Dance

Law Society Dinner & Dance 2016

The annual Law Society Dinner & Dance 2016 was held on Plaque of Appreciation
Friday 11 November 2016 at Pan Pacific Singapore.
Mr Samuel Chacko
Approximately 400 guests attended the dinner, including
the Honourable Judge of Appeal, Justice Chao Hick Tin, Mr Suresh s/o Damodara
Judicial Commissioners of the Supreme Court as well as
other distinguished guests. The master of ceremonies Friend of the Law Society
for the night was husband- wife duo, Mr Rishi Budhrani
and Ms Sharul Channa who kept guests laughing and Professor Mark Findlay, School of Law, Singapore
entertained throughout the evening. Guests were also Management University
treated to melodious tunes by a live band led by vocalist
Ywenna Carollin. Associate Professor Chan Wing Cheong, Faculty of
Law, National University of Singapore
At the Dinner the C C Tan Award 2016 was conferred on
Mr Chandra Mohan K Nair and the Pro Bono Ambassador Ms Sarogenei Kolantha, Lockton Companies
Award 2016 was conferred on Mr Tan Cheow Hung. (Singapore) Pte Ltd

Other award recipients for 2016 included the following: Mr Lee Kow Fong, Ngee Ann Polytechnic

Volunteer of the Year Award There were also fund-raising activities at the Dinner in the
form of a silent ballot in aid of our Pro Bono Services Office.
Large-sized law practice: Tan Rajah & Cheah
The Law Society would like to thank the following law firms
Medium-sized law practice: IRB Law LLP who purchased Silver tables:

Small-sized law practice: A Zamzam & Co 1. Gloria James-Civetta & Co

Sole Practitioner Law Practice: S Skandarajah & Co 2. Harry Elias Partnership LLP

Contributor of the Year Award 3. TSMP Law Corporation

Allen & Gledhill LLP 4. Withers KhattarWong

The Law Society would also like to thank DBS Treasures for
its sponsorship of the Dinner and Dance.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner & Dance

Citation for C C Tan Award 2016

This citation was read by Vice-President Mr Gregory Vijayendran at the Dinner & Dance.

It is my privilege and honour to read the citation for the C C Chandra Mohan K Nair has been with Tan Rajah & Cheah
Tan Award 2016. since he started practice in 1977. He explained in an
interview what motivated him to stay with the same firm
For senior members of the Bar who have had the privilege throughout his legal career, they were very generous with
of knowing the first President of the Law Society Mr Tan me, giving me a place as a legal assistant. I think their
Chye Cheng, or C C Tan as he was fondly known, they generosity must be reciprocated with loyalty. Ive been very
would say that throughout his long professional career, he lucky to be here and Ive got very nice colleagues.
embodied the finest and noble virtues of the legal profession
honesty, fair play, gentlemanliness and personal integrity. To his friends and colleagues at the Bar, Chandra Mohan is
perhaps best known for his candour and courage especially
The Council of the Law Society inaugurated the C C Tan for challenging causes. He has no qualms in speaking his
Award in 2003 in his memory. The Council presents this mind yet always minding his speech. The brilliant balance
award annually to a member of the Bar who best exemplifies of tact and persuasion is a hallmark of Chandras ability as
these qualities. a fine yet fearless advocate. In an interview, he credited his
mother with the strong moral upbringing he received while
Our CC Tan Awardee this year is Mr Chandra Mohan K growing up in modest circumstances.
Nair. Chandra was admitted as an Advocate & Solicitor of
the Supreme Court of Singapore in 1977 and he has been Today, we honour Chandra Mohan for his work with the Law
in practice for 39 years now. He is presently a partner at Society and his contributions to the legal profession.
Tan Rajah & Cheah. It is no coincidence that this years
awardee practises in the very firm whose founder inspired Many of the current members of Council will remember
the award he is receiving. He was also formerly a President Chandra Mohan as a regular attendee at the Societys
of the Law Society from 1995 to 1997 and thereafter, a Annual General Meeting. He has conscientiously and
Nominated Member of Parliament from 2002 to 2004. He consistently attended these annual meetings. In that setting,
also served as the former Chairperson of our International even as a member (albeit with stature), he has regularly
Relations Committee. Such is his knowledge and grasp of put forth constructive suggestions for Council to consider.
Law Societys matters that we invited him back to serve as Let me cite two notable examples. First, the Law Societys
a member of our 50th Anniversary Celebrations Committee, Biennial Lecture series was inaugurated in 2007 as a
which the Society is celebrating next year. He gave valuable result of his suggestion in an AGM in 2006. A more recent
input on the issue of the exodus of the middle category example is the issue of s 38(1)(c) of the Legal Profession
lawyers a few years back with a suggestion of mentorship Act at the AGM in 2015. Council is currently following up
by senior lawyers in training contract settings. That shows with that issue and a meeting with the Minister for Law is
the measure of the man. A lesser known fact is that Chandra slated for 2017.
Mohan plays soccer in the Law Societys veteran soccer
team. I must clarify that the C C Tan Award is not given Our current premises at 39 South Bridge Road is a blessing
to recognise Chandras soccer skills even though he has we have as a society due to the thought leadership of
scored fantastic long-range goals for the profession. That Mr Chandra Mohan (when he was Vice-President and
long range goal will become apparent to you by the time I subsequently as President) as well as his Council. We
finish this citation. are in a comfortable financial position today to consider
buying another property largely because of the current
He was also the former president of the Roundtable, a premises bought years ago and stewarded well financially
political discussion group. His other involvements are in civic by succeeding Law Society Councils. The present Council
societies and professional organisations like the National decided to honour Chandra Mohan for that past contribution
University of Singapore Council, National University of by giving him more of the same in having a say! We
Singapore Society and Ministry of Education Committee nominated him to sit on the Premises Committee to help us
(COMPASS). source for a second property to purchase.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner & Dance

Council sought a mandate from the profession at the recent you can buy bigger premises, maybe a country club-kind of
AGM this year to purchase an additional office premises place. Thats what the younger lawyers should be looking
for the general use and/or benefit of the Society and its at. You have a duty to the profession to bring it to greater
members, at an outlay of up to S$9 million by utilising heights.
reserves in the General/Compensation Funds or a bank
loan. That resolution was unanimously approved. We will not be buying a country club-kind of place. However,
the fact that we are now able to consider purchasing a
It would come as no surprise to anyone present tonight that second property speaks volumes of the vision of our former
Chandra Mohan attended the recent AGM and was strongly Presidents like Chandra Mohan, the late Mr Palakrishnan
supportive of the resolution. The support was not merely SC, Ms Phyllis Tan, and their respective Council members.
because he was in the Premises Committee! In fact, he
took to the floor to explain why the younger generations of As an ancient, anonymous Greek proverb goes: A society
lawyers should also support the resolution. grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they
know they shall never sit in. Mr Chandra Mohan is first,
To those who were unhappy having to pay extra levy back not that old and secondly, not sitting under the shade of
then in 1997 when the resolution to purchase 39 South the building he helped to purchase. However, the truism
Bridge Road was passed, he said: remains that this society, our society, has grown greater
because of him. We owe him and his Council a moral debt.
This is good for the spirit of the Bar and for future generations
of lawyers. We must have our own home. When you have May I now invite the President of the Law Society to present
a home, you have the energy and the love and affection. this award and welcome the 2016 CC Tan Award recipient,
I would like the younger lawyers to realise that, with this Mr Chandra Mohan to the stage to receive the award and
as a base, you can move on to greater heights. Tomorrow deliver his acceptance speech.

Mr Chandra Mohan K Nair with 2016 Law Society President Mr Thio Shen Yi, SC

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner & Dance

C C Tan Award Acceptance Speech

Honourable Judge of Appeal Justice Chao Hick Tin, then crowded Supreme Court Bar Room where the current
Honourable Judges and Judicial Commissioners, President and burning issues of the day (including law, politics, a bit
Thio Shen Yi SC and Council members of the Law Society, of gossip about lawyers, Judges, etc) were discussed and
distinguished guests, colleagues at the Bar, members of the debated over many cups of tea and coffee served by faithful
legal fraternity, ladies and gentlemen, stalwarts such as the late Mr Choo. In the 1970s and 1980s
many senior lawyers would intermingle with junior lawyers
Thank you Mr President and Council Members for this C C and words of wisdom, etiquette and good Court manners
Tan Award. I am deeply touched. This Award is one which would be imparted unselfishly. Such was the camaraderie
means a lot to me, because of Mr CC Tan who I had the that it was not uncommon for a senior lawyer in one firm
privilege of working for and the values he personified to send a junior lawyer in another firm a precedent or copy
honesty, fair play, courtesy and professional integrity. of a case-report to help him or her out in a particularly
challenging case. How I long for those yesteryears and the
Mr C C Tan, as the more senior members of the Bar know, friendly ways of legal practice.
was one of the founding partners of Tan Rajah & Cheah
(founded in 1947), where I started my legal career as And when I think of Mr C C Tan, what stands out most is his
a newly qualified lawyer in 1977 (it was my first job, and principle that we are privileged and honoured to be lawyers
chances are, my last ). At the time I was employed as a and that we must repay this privilege with service to the
legal assistant by TRC, Mr C C Tan was already a highly legal fraternity, to worthwhile institutions and in service to
respected, successful luminary in the legal fraternity (he Society and the nation. After working for about three years
started legal practice in 1933 and was in legal practice till in TRC, I broached the subject to Mr Tan of serving in a
his demise in 1991 at the age of 80). He was consistently sub-committee of the Law Society. I will always remember
unassuming and gracious with everyone with other his reply to me he said: Chandra, it is your duty and your
members of the Bar, Judges, clients, members of the public, privilege to do so. I took that principle of service so much
and even with the most junior lawyers of the firm such as to heart, that I have it on good authority that I would always
me. We learnt the lore (LORE not just LAW) of being talk about Service and giving back to Society with young
lawyers during regular lunches that Mr Tan would host in lawyers including those who came to see me for services as
places such as the Town Club, or in the camaraderie of the a Commissioner for Oaths and Notary Public. One of those

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner & Dance

young lawyers then was Susan de Silva, (a fellow member Law Society Council elections in the junior category in
of the Bar) who was of course so impressed with me and the early 1980s. I served the Law Society Council from
my idealistic ways that she eventually agreed to marry me around 1982 to 1991 and continued from 1994 to 1998. I
seven years ago, after the passing of my late wife Goury served in various Law Society Committees from the late
(also a practising lawyer) in 2000. 1970s and as the President from 1995 to 1997, and still
serve in some of the sub-committees. I also served in the
Mr C C Tan also exemplified a paradox that of a humble Board of Legal Education, Academy of Law, the National
man who was nevertheless prepared to call things out if he University of Singapore Council, the National University of
thought that something was wrong. He had the courage of Singapore Society (NUSS), various government ministries
his convictions, and he would speak up even if the cause committees, and as a Nominated Member of Parliament.
was not popular, or came from a higher authority. But he I feel it is my duty and an honour to serve my profession
would criticise the thing that he believed was wrong, never and society in whatever way I can. The profession needs
the person. For example he (and many senior members of genuine and sincere volunteers to ensure continuity and
the Bar) had their concerns about the Singapore Academy leadership in making sure we have an independent and
of Law when it was to be launched and its effect on the proactive Bar, always respected by Singaporeans and the
role of the Law Society and the independence of the Law outside world.
Society. And about the purchase of a property to house the
Law Society. Sometimes he was heard and things changed, I have tried to practise law as professionally as possible, with
and sometimes not. But even if he didnt win, or if the other care and concern for my clients, both in civil, commercial
side did not agree with him, he was not less respected for and criminal work, for my law firm and colleagues, for my
it, but possibly more. Law Society, and for society as a whole. However, sadly
in recent years I have noticed commercialism creeping
The C C Tan Award also reminds us of the importance of in and stifling professionalism. I therefore would urge our
ones reputation. Mr C C Tans reputation for being not just colleagues at the Bar to be mindful of this and minimise the
a very accomplished lawyer, but perhaps more importantly, erosion of professionalism.
for his decency, courtesy, humility, and for his personal and
professional integrity has endured during his lifetime and Idealism must always be in our hearts. Idealism in wanting
beyond. This is the kind of legacy that cannot be acquired to do good, in wanting to stand up to noble and honourable
just by handling the biggest cases, earning big fees, or principles, in helping the down-trodden, in the poor
having the best offices. This is the kind of legacy that comes who cant afford legal representation, in speaking up on
from being a lawyer who works hard and smart, and who constitutional, administrative and political issues in order to
never ceases being a human being who practises the law be counted and in the interests of Singapore. Overall, the
with heart and compassion, and a purpose beyond himself. legal profession is still a noble and honourable profession.
And so my dear fellow lawyers, let us never settle for less All of us have a duty to ensure standards are kept high and
than camaraderie, the courage of our convictions, and that we maintain this privilege.
service above self!
Once again thank you to the Council for honouring me
And such good traditions must endure. We all grow up and with the C C Tan award. I do wish the outgoing and the
mature to be what we are because of our family, our good incoming Council members continued success in their
friends and to a large extent our generous law firms. The hard work at Law Society. And to Gregory Vijayendran,
ethos and good natured partners I have had over the years Ms Kuah Boon Theng, Adrian Tan and Dhillon Dinesh
in TRC taught me how to serve not just my clients, and my Singh, congratulations on holding the important positions
staff, but also society as a whole. Lawyers are privileged of President, Vice-Presidents and Treasurer respectively
to serve, and serve they must with distinction. I believe I with effect from 1 January 2017. And I wish all in the legal
acquired this spirit also through sports, especially team fraternity good health, happiness and joy in the practice of
games like soccer and hockey you learn to fight hard law and in life generally.
together, and accept victory and loss sportingly. My son
Valmiki Nair (practising in Dentons Rodyk) would of course Chandra Mohan K Nair
include rugby as he is a rugby fanatic I can see that he
has got a bit of his fathers genes and habits!

As I matured in legal practice, I had the passion to improve

the legal profession. I therefore decided to contest in the

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Dinner &
& Dance
Dinner &
& Dance
Singapore Law Gazette Awards

Results of the 2016 Singapore Law Gazette Awards

The Law Society congratulates the following winners of the In addition, we commend the following three articles that
2016 Singapore Law Gazette Awards: were on the shortlist:

Best Feature Article 1. Associate Professor Low Kee Yang (Singapore

Management University) A Doctors Duty of
Benny Tan Zhi Peng (National University of Singapore) Disclosure: UKSC Sets New Paradigm in Montgomery
Wilful Blindness and Presumption of Knowledge under v Lanarkshire Health Board (September 2015).
Section 18(2) of the Misuse of Drugs Act Putting the
Puzzle Pieces Together (February 2016). 2. Darius Chan (Norton Rose Fulbright (Asia) LLP) The
Scope of De Novo Review of an Arbitral Tribunals
Best Feature Article by a Young Lawyer Jurisdiction (November 2015).

Tham Lijing (Ascendant Legal LLC) Legitimate 3. Calvin Liang (Tan Kok Quan Partnership) and Tham
Expectations and Good Administration (July 2015). Lijing (Ascendant Legal LLC) Fair Play and Match
Fixing: A Dialogue on Tan Seet Eng v Attorney-General
(April 2016).

About the Awards

Singapore Law Gazette Awards 2017
Qualifying Period: July 2016 to June 2017
The qualifying period for the 2017 awards is from July 2016 to June 2017 (for articles published in the Features section
of the Law Gazette during this period). If you are interested in contributing an article on substantive law or a case
commentary for the Features section, please write to the Publications Director, Sharmaine Lau, at publications@lawsoc.

Articles received between now till 10 May 2017 will be considered for publication in the qualifying period for the awards.
However, notice should be given to the Publications Director of your interest to submit an article by no later than 15
March 2017.

Two awards may be awarded, subject to the decision of the judges and the Publications Committee: Best Feature Article
and Best Feature Article by a Young Lawyer*. Articles jointly written by two or more writers will also qualify.

All qualifying articles will be judged based on the following criteria:

1. Depth of analysis, display of thought leadership and whether cited in a judgment;

2. Depth of research; and

3. Writing style.

We welcome article contributions from members of the legal profession, including practising lawyers, law academics, in-
house counsel and those in the legal service. Apart from the opportunity to share your views on an area of law of interest
to you, you might also stand a chance to win the coveted award. If you are interested in contributing an article, write in

* Best Feature Article by a Young Lawyer is a person 35 years of age or below at the time of submission of the article.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Stare Decisis and ARs

When an Assistant Registrar of the Supreme Court (AR) hears applications for
specific discovery, summary judgment, striking out, etc, he exercises the power,
authority, and jurisdiction of a High Court judge in Chambers.1 So is an AR hearing
such applications bound, and should he be so bound, by the judgments of a High
Court Judge?

Many of us have appeared before ARs on interlocutory 1. the High Court is not bound by its previous decisions;
applications. In these applications, we would have cited
judgments by High Court Judges, probably with the full 2. ARs exercise the powers, authority, and jurisdiction of
expectation that the judgment would be followed or applied. the High Court;
Some of us might have worried about whether the AR would
distinguish the present case from the Judges judgment. 3. so ARs are not bound by the previous decisions of the
A small number would have gone on to consider whether High Court (whether by ARs or Judges).
Judges judgments formally bind ARs or whether such
judgments are of only persuasive authority.2 Those of us The ARs observation that he was not bound had no
who reached this dangerous, time-consuming frontier would practical significance in that case: there were in any event
then in all likelihood just take a punt on one of two (contrary) two conflicting decisions by High Court Judges so the AR
conclusions, (a) ARs are not formally bound because they was free to decide which to apply. But the case is significant
are on the same level as a Judge; or (b) ARs are junior because it appears to be the first written decision where
Judges so of course they are bound. an AR had said he was not bound by a High Court Judges
Two recent AR decisions, each arriving at a different
answer, indicate that it is perhaps time to devote a little Second AR Decision Bound
more attention to the question of whether ARs are bound by
the judgments of High Court Judges. The observations in Chan Yat Chun on stare decisis were
controversial enough to merit a rather detailed refutation by
First AR Decision Not Bound a different AR a mere seven months later, in the case of
Actis Excalibur Ltd v KS Distribution Pte Ltd [2016] SGHCR
In Chan Yat Chun v Sng Jin Chye [2016] SGHCR 4, the AR 11. The AR in Actis Excalibur took the view that ARs were
observed obiter that ARs were not bound by the decisions bound by the judgments of High Court Judges.
of High Court Judges. The ARs reasoning was concise and
had an attractive simplicity: The essential reasoning in Actis Excalibur was that ARs
were granted the authority and jurisdiction of a High Court

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Judge in chambers merely to give effect to the internal In Singapore:

organisation of judicial work in the High Court. Under the
judicial hierarchy, ARs remained juridically ancillary to 1. The High Court in Indo Commercial Society (Pte) Ltd v
the Judges. ARs were therefore obliged not to overreach Ebrahim [1992] 2 SLR(R) 667 had to decide whether it
the powers conferred upon them by declining to follow or was bound to apply the decision of the Privy Council (on
apply the decisions of the Judges. appeal from a different jurisdiction) over a conflicting
House of Lords judgment. Michael Hwang JC noted
English Decision Not Bound that While there is no reason in theory why Singapore
courts should be bound by Privy Council decisions
It is interesting to compare the reasoning in Chan Yat Chun from other jurisdictions (as opposed to treating them
and Actis Excalibur with the English decision of Coral Reef with great weight), the practice has been for Singapore
Limited and Silverbond Enterprises Limited [2016] EWHC courts to treat themselves as virtually bound by any Privy
874 (Ch). Coral Reef was a decision by a master of the Council decision on a point of law, whether statutory or
Chancery Division of the English High Court. Masters in common law and from whatever jurisdiction. The Court
England are usually more senior in age and expertise than then went on to say that, however, given Singapores
ARs in Singapore. But their roles are broadly the same. independence, it may therefore be possible to re-state
the doctrine of stare decisis in such a way that only
The master in Coral Reef took the view that masters were Privy Council decisions on appeal from Singapore will
not bound by the decisions of English High Court judges. be binding on Singapore courts (although in the end it
The master took the view that the principle of stare decisis left the question open).5
depended on the status of the Court and not the Judge.
Since the decision of a master was that of the High Court, a 2. In Lim Quee Choo v David Rasif [2008] SGHC 36, Goh
master and a High Court Judge sat in Courts of co-ordinate Yi Han AR took the view that While I am fully aware that
(ie, equal) jurisdiction. So the judgments of a Judge were of I am bound by higher authority, I am equally of the view
only persuasive authority to a master, and vice versa. that where such higher authority is not entirely clear,
or has been qualified indirectly by another authority of
The master also made some practical observations. He equal standing in recent times, the lower court should
accepted that in the past, some High Court Judges would not be precluded solely by the matter of precedence
have treated masters as holding an obviously inferior from re-examining the case law and determining
office. But he noted that the world has moved on since whether there is scope for further clarification of the
those days. In particular, masters now had the jurisdiction law in order to do justice as a matter of fairness and
to hear and try more or less the same cases as the High principle.6
Court Judges, and there is no longer an automatic right
to ask the judge to rehear any application made to the 3. In Re Lehman Brothers Finance Asia Pte Ltd [2013]
master. He also said that given the volume of procedural 1 SLR 64, Quentin Loh J noted his doubts about
work that masters heard, they were the experts in matters whether the High Court should continue to be bound
of procedure, and that no High Court Judge would simply by the decisions of the previous Court of Appeal of
ignore the decision of a master that was in point. These Sarawak, North Borneo, and Brunei. The judge said
practical realities of the English civil procedure system he had reservations about the continued carriage of
supported the masters view that he was not bound by the unnecessary baggage from our chequered political
decision of an English High Court Judge. history, particularly when we have developed our own
jurisprudence over almost half a century since our
Is an AR Bound by the Decision of a High Court independence.7
4. In 1994, the Court of Appeal issued a Practice Statement
It has been said that the rules of stare decisis are simply (Judicial Precedent) [1994] 2 SLR 689, stating that the
rules of practice laid down by the Court itself for its own Court of Appeal should not hold itself bound by any
guidance.3 Singapore inherited the English doctrine of previous decisions of its own or of the Privy Council,
stare decisis.4 As applied in Singapore and England, the which by the rules of precedent prevailing prior to 8 April
rules of stare decisis would appear to be first and foremost 1994 were binding on it, in any case where adherence
rules of practice grounded in issues of practical justice. to such prior decisions would cause injustice in a
particular case or constrain the development of the law
in conformity with the circumstances of Singapore.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


In England, inter alia: interpretation is that Chan Yat Chun does not represent
the settled practice in the Registry. The decision in Actis
1. In 1966, the House of Lords issued a Practice Statement Excalibur, delivered by a more senior AR and coming so
(Judicial Precedent) [1966] 1 WLR 1234 where it quickly after Chan Yat Chun, might well represent the
departed from the previous practice of holding itself Registrys attempt to correct any misconception arising out
bound by its previous decisions, and stated its desire to of Chan Yat Chun.
modify their present practice and, while treating former
decisions of this House as normally binding, to depart But this remains speculation. A definitive answer on the
from a previous decision when it appears right to do so. practice in the Registry will have to await a third decision
from another AR.14
2. In Willers v Joyce (2) [2016] UKSC 44, the UK Supreme
Court accepted that since the Privy Council was not Should an AR be Bound by the Decision of a High
a UK Court, its decisions could not be binding on any Court Judge?
judge in England. The Supreme Court then adopted an
approach that it accepted might be inconsistent as a The last question is whether an AR should be bound by the
matter of logic, but was plainly sensible in practice and decisions of a High Court Judge. There are three reasons
justified by experience: since the Privy Council drew that cumulatively suggest an AR should be so bound.
its members from the Supreme Court, the Privy Council
could expressly direct that English Courts should treat First, High Court Judges (and judicial commissioners)
its decision as representing the law of England.8 are drawn from a pool of eminent lawyers from the Legal
Service, the Bar, and academia. Generally ARs are not
If the rules of stare decisis are ultimately rules of practice, quite as eminent or experienced yet.15 Neither do they have
the question of whether ARs are bound by the decision of tenure. So in this real sense, while ARs exercise the powers
a Judge is unlikely to hinge on legal niceties such as the of a Judge in chambers, they do not have the same status
nature of the authority and jurisdiction that an AR exercises. of a Judge.
To illustrate, say we accept that ARs exercise co-ordinate
jurisdiction with High Court Judges.9 That alone would not Second, unlike in England, there is a right of appeal to
determine whether an AR is bound by the decisions of a a Judge in almost every interlocutory matter heard before
Judge. This is because courts of co-ordinate jurisdiction can an AR. In these circumstances, there is no reason to allow
decide to be bound or not to be bound by its own decisions. ARs the power to decline to follow a previous decision by
A classic example is the contrast between the practice of the a Judge. If that previous Judges decision is correct and
Civil and Criminal Divisions of the English Court of Appeal.10 the AR wrongly declines to follow it, the Judge hearing the
The former is generally bound by its own decisions (with appeal will simply allow the appeal. If the previous Judges
some exceptions),11 while the rules of precedent are less decision is wrong, then it is open to the Judge hearing the
rigidly applied in the latter.12 The difference in approaches appeal to decline to follow it. Certainty and predictability
is not a result of theory but of practical justice: in criminal in the law would be best served by the clear and simple
cases, the interest of the liberty of the accused takes priority principle that it is for the Judge (and not the AR) to depart
over a rigid application of precedent.13 from any earlier decision by a Judge.

So we must therefore look to the practice of the ARs to Third, the nature of the ARs jurisdiction is not primary,
determine whether they treat themselves as being bound but substituted jurisdiction.16 ARs exercise the jurisdiction
by the decisions of High Court Judges. In other words, what and powers of a High Court Judge in chambers, but that
is the rule of stare decisis that the ARs accept and adopt? jurisdiction and power are conferred not on the AR but on
the Judges of the High Court. In other words, the jurisdiction
We have seen from the decisions of Chan Yat Chun and and powers exercised by an AR are delegated. If so, it
Actis Excalibur that there is no express consensus from would be ironic if the ARs were to exercise those delegated
the Registry on whether ARs are bound by Judges. There jurisdiction and powers in a manner contrary to how a
are two ways to interpret those two decisions. First, Chan Judge has exercised the same. So there is much force in
Yat Chun and Actis Excalibur may indicate that there is yet the view that ARs are necessarily obliged in the discharge
no settled practice in the Registry. Perhaps the ARs have of such functions not to overreach the very premise upon
never given the issue much thought, or perhaps each camp which such powers, authority and jurisdiction are derived.17
thought its position so self-evident that it was not necessary
to state the obvious. The second, perhaps more probable,

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


hearing an appeal, the Court of Appeal shall have all the authority and jurisdiction
Tham Lijing of the High Court, but no one could sensibly argue that the Court of Appeal would
therefore be exercising co-ordinate jurisdiction with the High Court. Further, Herbs
MA (Oxon), BCL.
and Spices Trading Post Pte Ltd v Deo Silver (Pte) Ltd [1990] 2 SLR(R) 685 is authority
Of Counsel, Ascendant Legal LLC for the proposition that the jurisdiction of an AR is not primary but substituted,
Email: lijing.tham@ascendantlegal. which in turn suggests that the ARs jurisdiction is not entirely equal with that of a
com Judge. As further support, judicial power is vested in the Supreme Court under the
Constitution: Art 93. And it is notable that while Art 94(3) states that the High Court
shall consist of the Chief Justice and Judges of the High Court, and Art 94(6) provides
for Judicial Commissioners, Senior Judges, and International Judges to exercise the
Notes powers and perform the functions of a Judge of the High Court, the High Court
1 Order 32 r 9(1), Rules of Court. powers exercised by the Registrar (through ARs) are not given Constitutional footing.

2 A judgment is binding authority if it means that the lower Courts are bound to apply 10 At least as of 2004.
that legal principle in the case before it, however strongly they believe the legal principle 11 Young v Bristol Aeroplane Co [1944] KB 718.
is wrong, unless there is a reasonable distinction between the cases. A judgment is of
persuasive authority if Courts are likely to follow the legal principle they set out unless 12 R v Taylor [1950] 2 KB 368. See also the discussion in Cross on Precedent (4th Ed), at
there are good reasons for not doing so. pp 108119.

3 Davis v Johnson (1979) AC 264, 281 per Lord Denning; but contrast contrary 13 Cross on Precedent (4th Ed), at pp 155156.
observations at 336 per Viscount Dilhorne.
14 A decision from a High Court Judge would also be instructive. Although in theory
4 Mah Kah Yew v PP [19681970] SLR(R) 851, at [6]. that could raise some circularity: if the Registrys accepted practice is that they are not
bound by a Judge, then a decision by a Judge telling the Registry that it is so bound
5 See judgment at [15][17]. would not be followed in any event. In such a case, a decision by the Court of Appeal
6 See judgment at [59]. would be required to definitively settle the issue.

7 See judgment at [22]. 15 Art 96 of the Constitution states that a person requires not less than 10 years of practice
to be qualified for appointment as a Judge. There is no similar legislated requirement
8 See judgment at [17][21]. for ARs.

9 Even this point may not be free from controversy. It does not follow from O 32 r 9(1) 16 Herbs and Spices Trading Post Pte Ltd v Deo Silver (Pte) Ltd [1990] 2 SLR(R) 685, at
that ARs sit in a court of co-ordinate jurisdiction as a High Court Judge. Section [10].
29A(3) of the Supreme Court of Judicature Act uses similar wording to O 32 r 9(1): in
17 Actis Excalibur, at [18].

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Reporting Suspicions The Role of Lawyers

in Singapore in the Fight Against Money
This article sets out the statutory requirements for legal practitioners and law practices
to lodge a suspicious transaction report with the authorities where applicable, and
identifies some potential red flag situations which they should be mindful of.
Introduction The money laundering process generally involves three
discrete stages: placement, layering and integration. The
A report on anti-money laundering published in 2013 by proceeds of criminal activity are first introduced into the
the Singapore Ministry of Finance acknowledges that, financial system during the placement stage, often broken
as a thriving hub for business, financial services and up into small amounts to decrease the risk of detection.
transport, Singapore is susceptible to being used as a These funds are then distanced from their illegitimate
conduit for money laundering.1 Over the course of the origins through a series of financial transactions during the
past two decades, Singapore has developed a robust layering stage. Having successfully disturbed the audit trail,
regime to counter this risk, through a combination of tough through the integration phase the criminal will reinsert the
regulation, rigorous supervision and effective enforcement. ostensibly clean money back into the legitimate economy
In light of this it is somewhat surprising that the results of a so that the funds can be used freely for his own personal
survey conducted by the Law Society of Singapore in June benefit or for the financing of further criminal activity.
2016 indicate a continued lack of awareness regarding
money laundering risk among law firms and practitioners Lawyers are vulnerable to being misused or targeted by
in Singapore. There appears to be a belief that money criminals involved in money laundering activities for a
laundering is something that happens to others not to me. number of reasons, and at various different stages within
As a result of these findings, the Law Society of Singapore the money laundering process. First, criminals may seek to
has concluded that still more can and should be done to engage legal services to lend a veneer of legitimacy to any
raise awareness amongst lawyers in Singapore about the transactions undertaken as part of the money laundering
risk of the profession being misused to launder money and process. Second, firms are often required to hold significant
our consequential responsibilities.2 sums of money on behalf of their clients in connection with
the completion of a transaction. The act of passing money

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


through a firms client account cleanses the money, allowing Financial Action Task Force is an inter-governmental body
criminals to disguise the origins of the proceeds. Third, the which was established in 1989 in response to the growing
confidentiality obligations which lawyers owe to their clients international concern regarding the proliferation of money
appeal to criminals who consider that they may be able to laundering on a global scale. Money laundering is by no
manipulate and use the cloak of legal privilege to conceal means a new phenomenon. However, the scale of such
their criminal wrongdoing from the authorities. Finally, many activity aided in large part by technological advances
of the professional services offered by lawyers, such as which enable individuals to transfer funds anywhere and at
conveyancing and the creation and management of trusts, any time at the click of a button has increased dramatically
companies and charities, are methods used by criminals to in recent years. Indeed, the United Nations Office on Drugs
conceal money or to transfer it to their associates under the and Crime estimates that laundered money currently
guise of a legitimate transaction. It is therefore essential that represents between two and five per cent of global GDP.3
law firms and practitioners take a proactive role in the fight
against money laundering by providing adequate training Though initially directed only at the financial sector, the
to ensure that their employees and partners are alert to the reach of the FATF Recommendations was subsequently
possibility of misuse and able to recognise potential red extended in 2003 to cover certain non-financial businesses
flag indicators early on. Firms should also seek to promote and professions including lawyers which play the role
a culture of internal reporting of suspicions so that, once of gatekeepers in providing access points to financial
identified, concerns are escalated internally through the systems. The rationale for broadening the scope of the
appropriate channels and dealt with accordingly including FATF Recommendations in this way was according to FATF,
meeting the requested obligation to report to the authorities twofold. First, in recognition of the fact that the so-called
in certain countries. gatekeepers were uniquely placed, by virtue of the role
that they play in many financial transactions, to monitor and
Legal practitioners have always been subject to the identify any suspicious activity. Second, the Financial Action
fundamental code of ethics of the profession, which Task Force was concerned that such professionals were
requires lawyers to act with integrity and to uphold the rule unwittingly assisting criminals by providing advice to them
of law by not supporting, facilitating or becoming unwittingly and acting as financial intermediaries. By requiring lawyers
involved in criminal activity. Prior to the introduction of the to be alert and proactive in their monitoring of clients, there
current statutory regime, a lawyer practicing in Singapore was less chance that they could become unintentionally
would, I believe, have been ethically obliged to cease involved in any money laundering activity.
acting upon becoming aware of suspicious activity which
could indicate money laundering. However, the statutory The FATF Recommendations themselves have no direct
anti-money laundering obligations go beyond that ethical effect and merely prescribe a framework of recommendations
duty by requiring legal practitioners and firms not only to to be followed by national legislatures when imposing anti-
take reasonable steps to detect, but also to inform the money laundering obligations through domestic legislation.
relevant authorities should they suspect the involvement However, the FATF Recommendations are universally
of their client (or any other party to the transaction) in, recognised as the international standard for anti-money
money laundering. Many in the profession around the world laundering and have been endorsed by more than 180
have expressed concerns that the reporting obligation countries.4 Singapore as a member of the Financial
undermines the independence of the legal profession and is Action Task Force since 1992 was required to introduce
incompatible with the duty of confidentiality which underpins legislation to give effect to their content (including, from
the lawyer-client relationship. While such concerns are of 2003, the introduction into domestic legislation of so-called
course legitimate, we cannot lose sight of the fact that as gatekeeper legislation). Singapore originally implemented
lawyers we also have an ethical obligation not to allow the such legislation in relation to lawyers in 2007 in the form of
profession to fall into misuse by criminals. In any event this an amendment to the Legal Profession Act (LPA).
debate is somewhat undermined in Singapore as lawyers
are under a statutory duty to report. The Current Legislative Regime
The FATF Recommendations Legislation which Applies to all Individuals
The foundations for Singapores current anti-money The primary legislation which sets out the predicate offences
laundering legislation were laid down in 1990 with the relating to money laundering in Singapore is the Corruption,
publication of the original Recommendations of the Financial Drug Trafficking and Other Serious Crimes (Confiscation
Action Task Force (the FATF Recommendations). The of Benefits) Act (Cap 65A) of Singapore (CDSA). Under

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Part VI of the CDSA, it is an offence to assist another Preventive Measures What Do the Rules Require
person to retain, transfer or use the benefits of criminal
conduct. Any person who, in the course of his or her trade, Training
profession, business or employment, becomes aware or has
reasonable grounds to suspect that any property represents Awareness and vigilance are key to the successful
the proceeds of crime or was (or is intended to be) used in identification of potential red flags and the prevention of
connection with any criminal conduct, must report his or her money laundering. The anti-money laundering provisions
suspicions to a Suspicious Transaction Reporting Officer set out in Part VA focus strongly on preventive measures,
as soon as is reasonably practicable. Failure to do so is requiring each firm to take appropriate steps to identify,
offence under the CDSA. assess and understand its risk profile in relation to money
laundering, having regard to the size of the firm and the
Part VA and its Application practice areas in which it is involved, as well as the nature
of the firms client base. Firms are required to implement
The anti-money laundering practice rules relating specifically programmes for the prevention of money laundering which
to lawyers are found in Part VA of the LPA (Part VA), the are sufficient, bearing in mind the relevant risk profile of the
Legal Profession (Prevention of Money Laundering and firm. Such programmes must include training for legal and
Financing of Terrorism) Rules 2015 and the Law Society of support staff alike.
Singapores Practice Direction 1 of 2015 on the Prevention
of Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism (the Customer Due Diligence
Practice Direction). A recent amendment of these rules
came into effect on 23 May 2015 and repeals the existing Firms must take reasonable measures to ascertain the
legislation which was in place prior to that date. identity of their client (or, in the case of a client which is a
corporate entity, the natural persons who have a controlling
Part VA is stated to apply to legal practitioners and law interest in or exercise control over the client), the nature of
practices in Singapore (including any Qualifying Foreign the clients business and the source of funds of the client
Law Practice, licensed foreign law practice or the constituent at the outset of any transaction which concerns a relevant
foreign law practice of a Joint Law Venture) only when matter. The information compiled on the client must be kept
such practices undertake certain specified transactions up-to-date as the matter proceeds.
and activities which the Financial Action Task Force has
identified as carrying a higher risk of money laundering. Part VA advocates a risk-based approach to customer due
Such activities include conveyancing, the creation or diligence, requiring firms and legal practitioners to undertake
management of companies or trusts, the acquisition or such investigations as are commensurate with the level of
disposal of companies and transactions which are not usual. risk of money laundering and financing of terrorism. The
rationale behind the risk-based approach is to permit firms
To the extent that a transaction does not concern a relevant to focus on identifying and monitoring those clients which
matter, the obligations under Part VA and any secondary are considered to be higher risk, and in so doing, improving
legislation (including the Legal Profession (Prevention of the likelihood that they will detect (and prevent) suspicious
Money Laundering and Financing of Terrorism) Rules 2015) transactions. Firms are required to determine the risk profile
will not apply. However, this term is likely to be interpreted of a client by having regard to a variety of factors. These
broadly and the Practice Direction suggests that lawyers are discussed in further detail below. It is generally not
err on the side of caution (and, if in doubt, seek guidance necessary to undertake full client identity checks in respect
from the Law Society) when considering whether Part VA of existing clients, provided that there is no reason to suspect
may apply. The Practice Direction further notes that firms the clients involvement in money laundering and the lawyer
should undertake customer due diligence on their clients is satisfied that the original documentation provided for
irrespective of whether the transaction concerns a relevant the purposes of client identification was adequate and is
matter for the purposes of Part VA, as a matter of good unlikely to have changed.
practice. Furthermore, lawyers should bear in mind that the
CDSA may well apply even in circumstances where Part VA Identifying Red Flags
is not triggered.
Lawyers should ensure that they remain alert to the risk
of misuse by money launderers by watching out for and
recognising certain red flag indicators which may arise in
every day practice. These can broadly be grouped into the

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


four categories listed below and which contain illustrative subsequent transaction in a manner that is out of
examples of potential risk factors. sync with normal market dynamics;

1. Risk factors relating to the client d. transactions which are aborted following the deposit
of funds into the firms client account;
a. the client is unwilling to disclose, or evades
questions regarding, the source of its funds or its e. circumstances in which client money is deposited
reasons for structuring the transaction in a certain into the firms client account before completion
way; of the underlying work, or the incorrect amount is
deposited; or
b. the client is known to have been involved in criminal
activity, has criminal connections or is a politically f. litigation which appears to be a mere pretext for
exposed person; transferring funds from one entity or person to
c. the client is unduly familiar with, or shows an unusual
level of interest in, the specific requirements of the 3. Red flags relating to the clients source of funds
customer due diligence process;
a. circumstances in which an excessively high or low
d. the client attempts to conceal his or her true price is attached to any securities being transferred;
identity, or the identity of its beneficial owners (eg,
by avoiding personal contact without good reason, b. funds are received from or required to be sent
refusing to disclose information and documents to a jurisdiction which the Financial Action Task
which are required to enable the execution of Force has identified as a high risk jurisdiction or a
the transaction or using false or counterfeited jurisdiction to which the client has no apparent link;
c. the provision of funding for the transaction or for
e. the client appears to be connected to the transaction-related fees or taxes by a third party
counterparties in any way which gives rise to doubt which is not a credit institution and has no apparent
as to the true purpose of the transaction (eg, if connection to the transaction;
the same parties are involved in more than one
transaction over a short period of time); d. the unusual repayment of mortgages prior to the
initially agreed maturity date; or
f. the client is based in a jurisdiction which the
Financial Action Task Force has identified as a e. use by the client of multiple or foreign bank accounts
jurisdiction in which there is a higher risk of money without good reason.
laundering; or
4. Red flags relating to the clients choice of lawyer
g. the parties are not the same as the persons actually
directing the operation. a. the engagement of lawyers who lack competence
or experience in the relevant area of law or in the
2. Red flags relating to the services requested type of transaction;

a. receipt of instructions relating to the establishment b. a willingness on the part of the client to pay
of complicated trust or corporate structures in which substantially higher fees than usual;
money could be concealed;
c. the engagement of more than one firm in relation to
b. mandates which solely relate to routine aspects of a particular matter; or
forming a shell company, where the client does not
seek legal advice as to the appropriateness of the d. another firm terminating or refusing to enter into a
company structure and related matters; relationship with the client.

c. back-to-back real estate transactions where the The presence of red flag indicators in itself will not
purported value of the property increases with each necessarily give rise to suspicions of money laundering.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


However, once potential risk factors have been identified, the national laws relating to privilege in his or her home
lawyers and firms are required to consider whether they jurisdiction (whether Singapore or elsewhere) in addition
require further information in order to satisfy themselves to the applicable Singaporean anti-money laundering
that there are no reasonable grounds for suspicion of the legislation in order to ensure that client confidentiality is not
clients involvement in money laundering. breached by the making of an suspicious transaction report
where this is not required due to the privilege exception.
It is an offence to disclose to any other person that a
Under Part VA, lawyers are required to maintain records suspicious transaction report has been made or to disclose
of transactions and any documentation obtained through any other matter which is likely to prejudice any investigation
customer due diligence measures for a period of five years which may be conducted following the disclosure. To avoid
following completion of the transaction (if an occasional tipping off, a lawyer may be required to stall for time while
transaction) or termination of the business relationship. he awaits a response from the relevant authorities the real
The records must be sufficiently detailed to permit a reason cannot be given.
reconstruction of the relevant matter and to provide
evidence (if requested by any competent authority) for the AML Obligations and the Lawyer-Client
prosecution of any offence committed. Relationship
The Law Society of Singapore undertakes regular As the guardians of justice, lawyers are under an ethical
inspections of firms to assess compliance with applicable obligation to uphold the rule of law and not to assist their
anti-money laundering legislation. It may require firms clients in the conduct of criminal activity, whether wittingly
to produce documents or information on request. It is or otherwise. This ethical obligation requires lawyers to be
therefore important that firms ensure their records are kept alert to the potential misuse of their professional services
up-to-date and are adequate. In the wake of the 1MDB by clients seeking to further a criminal agenda. Few would
scandal, the Monetary Authority of Singapore announced suggest that the statutory requirement to undertake ongoing
earlier this year that it intended to set up a dedicated group customer due diligence set out in Part VA is anything other
to combat money laundering and strengthen enforcement. than a natural extension of that ethical obligation.
In line with this increased focus on enforcement, the Law
Society of Singapore has indicated that it intends to step up But what if a lawyer discovers information either as a
inspections at firms.5 result of due diligence or otherwise during the course of a
transaction which leads him to suspect the involvement of
Reporting of Suspicious Transactions and the his client in money laundering? Prior to 2007, a lawyer would
Offence of Tipping-off probably have been required to stop acting for the client in
such circumstances. However, he may have been under a
Part VA requires a lawyer who knows, or who has professional and legal obligation to keep the affairs of that
reasonable grounds to suspect that any property represents client confidential and not to disclose the circumstances
the proceeds of (or is otherwise linked to) criminal activity, to in which he had ceased to act to any other person. The
disclose the matter to a Suspicious Transaction Reporting criminal would have been free to continue to pursue his
Officer or an authorised officer under the CDSA as soon criminal agenda by seeking the advice of another lawyer.
as is reasonably practicable by way of filing a suspicious Under the statutory regime, lawyers are now required to
transaction report. report such suspicions to the authorities.

Failure to comply with the reporting obligation is an offence Many have expressed concerns that the reporting
under the CDSA, though lawyers practising in Singapore requirement (and the related prohibition against tipping-off)
will not be required to disclose information which is subject represents a complex ethical challenge to the confidentiality
to legal privilege. The Practice Direction specifies that legal and loyalty requirements of the lawyer-client relationship
professional privilege should be construed in accordance and undermines the independence of the legal profession,
with the laws and ethical obligations of the legal practitioner turning lawyers into mere agents of the state.6 However,
under the jurisdiction in which he/she is fully admitted to lawyers are also under an obligation to uphold the rule of
practise generally and suggests that practitioners consult law. The reporting requirement set out in Part VA only arises
with the Law Society of Singapore if they are in any doubt in the context of activities that are (or are suspected to be)
as to the extent of the privilege exception. It is therefore criminal. As such, the new statutory order arguably strikes a
essential that any lawyer practising in Singapore understands necessary balance between the two competing obligations;

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


the confidentiality obligation is overridden only where Notes

absolutely necessary in order to prevent lawyers from being 1 See <>.
misused and facilitating criminal financial flows, whether 2 See <
actively (by continuing to provide advice) or passively (by 2016_Final.pdf>.
ceasing to act for the client but remaining silent and, in so
3 See <>.
doing, sending criminals on their way to try their luck with a
different lawyer or firm). 4 See <

5 See <
Stephen Revell 2016_Final.pdf>.
Member, Anti-Money Laundering
6 Blake Bryant Goodsell, Muted Advocacy: Money Laundering and the Attorney-
Committee Client Relationship in a Post 9/11 World. J Legal Prof 34 (2009): 211.
The Law Society of Singapore
Partner, Freshfields Bruckhaus
E-mail: Stephen.revell@freshfields.
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Singapore Court Practice

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Includes access to digital version on Lexis Red for research on-the-go
including text annotation, search function and research history retention;
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Thorough discussion of developments concerning the Rules of Court
brought about by 10 sets of amendment rules since 2014.
Detailed commentary on new Orders such as provisions on the Singapore
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Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


The Family Lawyer of Tomorrow

Family lawyering extends beyond knowing the law, it is about providing holistic
advice to your client and having knowledge about appropriate dispute resolution
options which best suit your client and the various programmes designed to assist
families in distress and children to cope with the breakdown of the marriage are
The role of the family lawyer in recent times has changed the various options that are available to resolve the dispute
and evolved into one which is ever more challenging, is just as important as knowing the solution to the dispute.
demanding and requires the ability not just to provide legal
advice, but to deliver holistic and pragmatic advice to the This article seeks to provide a brief overview of some of the
client, always bearing in mind the interest of the children dispute resolution options available to parties and the post-
involved. divorce support programmes for the children and parties.

A client who sees a family lawyer may not always be as a Dispute Resolution Options
result of an impending divorce. For example, a client may
see a lawyer to understand his or her legal rights and to Counselling and Mediation
seek advice on how to address current problems in the
marriage (pre-divorce). A client may see a lawyer when The Court may now direct parties to counselling and/or
divorce proceedings or proceedings for maintenance or mediation. Section 26(9) of the Family Justice Act 2014
childrens disputes have already commenced and may not states Subject to any other written law, a Family Court may,
only require legal advice in such circumstances, but also either on its own motion or on the application of any person,
advice on how best to address on-going disputes relating order any party to any proceedings in a Family Court, or
to the children and between the parties themselves and any child who is a subject of such proceedings, to undergo
perhaps even counselling. such mediation or counselling, or to participate in such
family support programme or activity, as the Family Court
Having a broad based knowledge of appropriate dispute may direct.
resolution options, the various programmes or schemes
provided by the Family Justice Courts (FJC) and the Pursuant to s 49(1) of the Womens Charter (Cap 353) (the
Ministry of Family and Social Development (MSF) would Act), where there are proceedings for divorce or judicial
be invaluable to a family lawyer. These programmes or separation or proceedings instituted under ss 59, 65, 66
schemes are designed to provide social support for families or 69 of the Act, the Court shall consider the possibility
in distress and offer appropriate dispute resolution options of reconciliation of the parties. Section 49(2) of the Act
to parties. Having the dispute heard in Court litigation should provides that where it appears to the judge from the nature
be the last resort. of the case, the evidence in the proceedings or the attitude
of the parties that there is a reasonable possibility of a
The ability to provide multi-faceted advice, suggestions reconciliation of the parties, the judge may do all or any of
and options to a client will no doubt be appreciated by the the following:
client who feels at a loss as a result of the breakdown of a
marital relationship and in some instances, having to deal (a) adjourn the proceedings to give the parties the
with disputes relating to the children. For a client to know opportunity to consider a reconciliation or to enable

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


anything to be done in accordance with paragraph (b) risk of violence. The family counsellor will assist parents
or (c); to understand how their marital conflict impacts on the
children, to understand the childrens needs at various
(b) with the consent of the parties, interview them in stages of their development through informed research and
chambers, with or without their solicitors, as the judge to develop a parenting plan with the parents. The children
thinks proper, to assist in a possible reconciliation; and are not involved in the process, only the parties.

(c) nominate a Conciliation Officer or some other suitable However, in the child inclusive approach, the child will be
person or organisation to assist in considering a able to share his or her experiences and how the conflict
possible reconciliation. of the parents has affected them. This will enable parents
to better understand their childs wishes, feelings and more
The Court has the power under s 50(1) of the Act to refer importantly, to be more sensitive and responsive to their
parties, with their consent, to mediation. However, the Court childs needs. The parenting plan can then be developed
has the power to direct or order parties to attend mediation with this in mind.
or counselling, even where there is no consent from the
parties. Section 50(2) states A court before which any Court Ordered Private Mediation
proceedings under this Act are being heard may, if the court
considers that doing so is in the interests of the parties and As a pilot scheme, with effect from 1 October 2016,
their children, at any stage in those proceedings direct or where there is a contested issue relating to the assets
advise any of the parties or their children where the gross value is S$3 million or above and there
are no contested issues relating to the custody care and
(a) to attend mediation conducted by such person as every control and/or access to any child, the Court will no longer
party or child attending the mediation may agree or, conduct mediation and may order parties to attend private
failing such agreement, as the court may appoint; mediation conducted by the Singapore Mediation Centre,
unless parties have agreed to engage a mediator of their
(b) to attend counselling provided by such person as the choice. The Court may also make orders pertaining to the
court may direct; or payment of the mediation and its related fees, as well as to
give directions or make orders for the timely and efficacious
(c) to participate in such family support programme or disposal of the case through mediation.2
activity as the court may direct.
Child Representative
Where divorce proceedings have commenced and there
is at least a child below the age of 21 years, parties are In acrimonious disputes involving children, the Court may
required to attend mandatory counselling and mediation on its own motion or upon the application of the parties,
at the Family Justice Courts.1 Section 50(3A) of the Act appoint a Child Representative if the Court is of the opinion
provides A court before which any proceedings under Part that it is in the best interests of the child to do so.3 The Child
X are being heard shall, where the proceedings involve Representative must form an independent view, based on
such classes of persons (being persons who have children the evidence available to him, of what is in the best interests
to the marriage) as may be prescribed by the Minister, do of the child; and act in what he believes to be in the best
either or both of the following: interests of the child.4

(a) order the parties to attend mediation conducted by such The Child Representative will interview the child to obtain
person as the court may appoint; the views and wishes of the child, as well as interview the
parents and others, for example, school counsellors, doctors
(b) order the parties or their children or both, at any stage in or teachers who are able to assist the Child Representative
the proceedings, to attend counselling provided by such in the formulating the recommendations to be made to the
person as the court may direct. Court in respect of the custody care and control and/or
access arrangements to be made.5
The Counselling and Mediation at the FJC involves
support from a family counsellor from the Counselling The Child Representative must file a written submission to
and Psychological Services (CAPS). In a child focused the Court and serve on the parties, setting out the views and
approach, the role of the family counsellor will be to recommendations of what would arrangements would be in
assist in identifying issues of dispute and assessing for the best interest of the child.6

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Parenting Coordinator such as the Mandatory Parenting Programme, Children-in-

Between Programme, Parenting Pact, and Counselling at
In situations where the parties are in dispute over the the Divorce Specialist Support Agencies. Where there are
implementation or compliance with the parenting and/or difficulties with access, there is the Supervised Visitation/
access orders, Parenting Coordination is a child focused Exchange.
alternate dispute resolution process which assists parents
to resolve such conflict without the need to return to Court for Divorce Specialist Support Agencies (DSSA)
enforcement or variation of the Court order. The Court may
appoint a Parenting Coordinator, who is a legal or mental The MSF appointed four DSSA in January 2015, following
health professional to assist parties with the implementation the recommendations made by the Family Justice
or compliance with the Court order and to resolve conflicts Committee in 2014. These are Care Corner Centre for
in the best interests of the child. Co-Parenting, Centre for Family Harmony, HELP FSC and
PPIS As-Salaam (for Muslim clients).
The FJC started a project at the end of 2016 to involve
the appointment of a Parenting Coordinator (lawyers who Mandatory Parenting Programme (MPP)
have been trained in Parenting Coordination) in appropriate
cases with the consent of the parties. With effect from 1 December 2016, it is mandatory for a
party who intends to initiate divorce proceedings to attend
Collaborative Family Practice the MPP prior to commencement of divorce proceedings.
As a start, the MPP applies to cases where there are minor
Collaborative Family Practice (CFP) is another form of children below the age of 14 years and this will be phased
dispute resolution which allows parties to resolve their overtime to include children below 21 years.
marital disputes without going to Court. It is not in every
case that the CFP process is suitable, for example, in The MPP is conducted at the DSSA and is a one-time
cases where there is domestic violence. There are several private consultation (about two hours) with counsellors from
characteristics of CFP which are distinct. The parties both MSF. The purpose of the programme is to inform divorcing
have an intention to resolve their dispute out of Court without couples about the impact of divorce on children, as well as
the threat of litigation and the process requires the parties the financial and housing implications consequent upon
and their lawyers to sign a Collaborative Agreement. In the a divorce. It is to encourage divorcing couples to make
event that parties are unable to reach an agreement, the informed decisions taking into account the best interests of
lawyers representing the parties will not be able to continue the children.
representing the parties in Court.
An applicant can register for the programme online via the
The CFP process requires parties to make full and frank MSF website using Singpass.
disclosure of documents and information on the matrimonial
assets and the meetings (called four-way meetings) are Children- in-Between Programme
conducted with the parties and their respective CFP
lawyers. Generally, each meeting lasts about two hours and The Court may at any time during the proceedings or after
may require about four to six of such meetings to be able an order has been made order parties and the children to
to reach a resolution. Prior to each meeting, an agenda is attend the Children-in-Between programme conducted by
prepared and minutes of the meeting circulated to all parties the DSSA. This programme differs from the Parenting Pact
after the meeting. The CFP process is confidential and (discussed below) in that both the parents and children have
without prejudice and discussions and negotiations during to attend. The programme for the children is structured to
the CFP process cannot be referred to in Court, in the event equip the children with the necessary skills to manage the
there is no settlement and the matter is litigated. challenges faced by them being caught in the midst of their
parents divorce. The parents are helped to understand how
The role of the CFP lawyers is collaborative and not their marital conflict may have an impact on the children and
adversarial. They facilitate both the parties in reaching a to encourage the parents to co-parent and how improved
resolution to the dispute. communication and cooperation between the parents will
benefit the children.
Parenting Programmes for Parents and Children
This programme is ideal for cases of high conflict and
There are various parenting programmes to assist the parties acrimony and the children are affected by their parents
and children pre-divorce as well as during or post-divorce

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


divorce. The programme is best suited for children above below seven years of age, the Court may call for a Social
six years and under 15 years of age. Welfare Report (SWR). If there are allegations of abuse,
an SWR may also be called for. If the child is above seven
Parenting Pact years of age and where the child is able to express an
independent view, a Custody Evaluation Report (CER) or
Where the divorce is uncontested, the parties have reached Access Evaluation report (AER) may be directed. These
a settlement on the ancillary matters and there is at least reports are prepared by the Counselling and Psychological
one child below the age of 21 years, the Court may refer Services of the FJC.
parents to attend the Parenting Pact session, to help them
understand the impact of divorce on their children and learn Pursuant to Rule 35 of the Family Justice Rules and
the benefits of being able to co-parent. The session lasts paragraph 9 of the Practice Directions, an application may
two hours and is conducted by the DSSA. be made to the Court to appoint a mental health professional
(either from the private sector or from the Child Guidance
DSSA Counselling Clinic of the Institute of Mental Health) to prepare a report.

The Court may, during the course of divorce proceedings Where there are specific concerns related to the welfare of
or after an order is made, order the parents and children the child which need to be addressed, the Court may call for
to attend counselling provided by the DSSA which will a Specific Issues Report, the purpose of which is to focus
offer support for them in relation to parenting issues and on such specific concerns and formulate recommendations.
childrens arrangements. A counselling order made would
not be for reconciliation. Conclusion

Supervised Visitation or Supervised Exchange Family lawyers have significant influence over their client, in
Conducted by the DSSA the nature of the advice given and the approach or conduct
to be adopted in the process of finding an amicable solution
Where there are difficulties with access handover or where to the numerous issues arising out of a breakdown of the
access has to be supervised, the Court previously would marital relationship. It is important to focus on the childs
make orders for Assisted Transfer or Assisted Access at the welfare and interest and perhaps even ask yourself, if the
Centre for Family Harmony. Such orders are now known client takes this course of action, how will it affect the childs
as Supervised Exchange or Supervised Visitation and are welfare or if the client takes this course of action, will it
conducted at the DSSA. Orders for Supervised Exchange help to facilitate a resolution of the dispute or will it increase
are made to facilitate the handover of the child from the an already tense and acrimonious situation.
parent having care and control to the other parent having
access to the child, whilst orders for Supervised Visitation Reflection prior to action, in my respectful view, is an
are made where there may be safety issues or concerns important part of family lawyering.
about the level of parent-child bonding and the access takes
place at the DSSA under supervision of the counsellor.

When the Court makes such an order, it is for a maximum of Yap Teong Liang
eight sessions for each order. If parties are either Singapore T L Yap Law Chambers LLC
citizens or Singapore Permanent Residents, they do not E-mail:
have to pay for such sessions for the first three Court orders.

The Court may request for a report to be prepared at the Notes

end of the eight sessions. The report is confidential and 1 Paragraph 12 of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions.
submitted to the Court, not the parties. 2 Paragraph 11 of the Family Justice Courts Practice Directions was amended to reflect
the recent changes (Amendment No 3 of 2016).
Types of Reports Related to the Child 3 Rule 30(1) of the Family Justice Rules 2014 and Paragraph 8 of the Family Justice
Courts Practice Directions.
In contentious and acrimonious proceedings involving
4 Rule 31(1) of the Family Justice Rules 2014.
children, the Court may rely on various types of reports to
assist in its deliberations prior to making orders for custody 5 Rules 31(2) to (4) of the Family Justice Rules 2014.

care and control and/or access. Typically, these reports 6 Rule 32 of the Family Justice Rules 2014.
are not made available to the parties. Where a child is

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Ethics in Practice

Placing the Civil into an Adversarial Process

The Oxford Dictionary defines the word etiquette as [t] and opposing counsel seizes the chance to use this as
he customary code of polite behaviour in society or among an example of just how horrible your client is as a person.
members of a particular profession or group , and has You, of course, try to defend your client only to be told by
placed the origin of the word as being [m]id 18th century: opposing counsel to just be quiet and stay where you are
from French tiquette list of ceremonial observances of a since he can tell from the affidavits that you had drafted and
court the Mickey Mouse tee that you are wearing today, that you
are nothing but a baboon armed with a laptop and a pen.
It is no wonder that the Court is so closely associated with And to top it off, all the chaos during the hearing has caused
the word etiquette that it would be included in a one of the you to be a full hour late in attending to your next matter as
worlds foremost dictionaries as an example of the words extra time had to be spent with dealing with the unrest for a
use. Court etiquette is a staple that is entrenched in almost matter which had started late to begin with.
every judicial system in the world. A simple search on the
internet reveals that most, if not all, judiciaries have some Total. Absolute. Mayhem.
form of etiquette enforced, the most common of which
could be summed up as having one be punctual, polite and This scenario is, of course, a complete exaggeration of what
presentable three rudimentary concepts to good manners might happen if Court etiquette was neither entrenched nor
that we have had inculcated in us since we were children. enforced during adversarial proceedings. Then again, with
But what is it that makes something so basic so difficult to life being as overly dramatic as it is at times, who is to say
follow when it comes to being at work? that such an extreme scene might not take place at all if we
were to suspend all practice of Court etiquette for a day?
Lawyers are people too! They get stressed and tired from
working overly long hours, and the adversarial system Lawyers are, for better or worse, officers of the Court and
does not make things any better as practitioners frequently with that comes the duty of upholding the dignity of the Court
find themselves in the midst of a live pressure cooker, and the profession as a whole. In fact, the Legal Profession
cornered in on all sides by Judge, client, opposing party and (Professional Conduct) Rules 2015 frequently mentions
opposing counsel, trying to keep their heads from exploding the phrase dignity (and standing) of, the legal profession
with facts, evidence and research, while having to keep as the very basis upon which acceptable conduct is to be
their ears peeled and eyes sharp at all times for picking up weighed.
more potentially useful bits of information along the way.
And all this has to be done whilst making sure that one still Clients are but laypersons, and with the Court being a
minds their Ps and Qs, and that their overall appearance is foreign place to them, can only look to the Counsel that
nothing short of orderly. they have retained as their guiding light for acceptable
practices before the Court. If practitioners, as members of
Let us take a step back and imagine a day in Court where the legal fraternity, do not start by leading through example,
etiquette has been suspended. it will only be a matter of time before the respectability of
the legal profession (and by extension, the legal system)
It is a Monday morning and you are running behind schedule starts crumbling to dust in the eyes of the public. The
as opposing counsel had showed up to the proceedings rationale behind the concept of Court etiquette as a whole
15 minutes late. Your client is trying to give her side of the is something that should not be taken lightly.
story but is getting interrupted by the constant ringing of
her mobile phone. And it does not make things easier for The practice of law has always been honoured as a
her that the Judge has to keep asking her to speak up and professional profession so let us continue to take its practice
repeat herself as the opposing counsels client is answering seriously so that the profession can continue being taken
every call that comes to his phone right there in the seriously in return.
Courtroom. His mobile conversations, however, have not
prevented him from hearing and getting very angry over an Representation and Law Reform Department
allegation that she has made against him, and he marches The Law Society of Singapore
right up to where she is seated to yell out to her as to what
he thinks about it. Both clients end up in a shouting match

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Ethics in Practice

Crosswords! Inside the Courtroom

1 2

3 4

7 8


11 12




3 Courtroom furniture 1 When judge enters

4 Before the judge 2 Address

5 Being on time is to be ______ 3 May it ______ the court

7 Traditional practice 6 Not permitted attire

9 Your friend 8 That which maketh a man

10 Not a permitted colour 11 Witness ______

12 A guiding light

13 First witness in Alice

14 Etiquette; (Etmology, German)

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Running Your Practice

Technology and Data as Lawyers Allies

From Data to Insights
Legal Aid for Lawyers Harnessing Technological
Intelligence in a Data Driven World
A lawyers tools of the trade were his law books. In those days, a firms library was
very manageable. There were few commentaries and the text of the law cases
and legislation were self-contained. Local case law that was reported took up only
a volume each year in the Malayan Law Journal. Older firms may have had the
early Kyshes law reports. Statutes were contained in four volumes DK Walters,
who had written the definitive commentary on Municipal Ordinances, was published
in one volume. Roland Braddells The Law of the Straits Settlements was another
volume. For a litigator, there was the Penal Code, the Criminal Procedure Code and
the Evidence Act, the same volumes used by lawyers.
The First Chief Wee Chong Jin by John Koh
Perhaps the greatest change in law practice between then search results that run into the hundreds if not thousands.
and now is brought about by the explosion of information. A The lack of a systemic way of sorting, cataloguing and
lawyer cannot just rely on the physical tomes stacked high filtering information can obstruct lawyers from their task at
in his library. What separates a prevailing party from the hand, ie, providing a solution or a resolution to their clients
other may well come down to how many additional hours problems. It is no longer the case where the more you have,
the former took when conducting research or looking up an the more you know. While technology is a great enabler,
obscure point of law. This would mean that a good lawyer there is also an inconvenient truth the more one can
must be able to harness and make use of information and access, the more time one will need to separate the chaff
data. from the wheat.

Information can be overwhelming. A poor search query We have spoken to a large number of lawyers, and
entered into an electronic case database will throw out according to our estimates, about 30 per cent to 40 per

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Running Your Practice

cent of research time would eventually be written off and Technology as an Ally Data. Machine Learning.
be unbillable, which means a loss of revenue for law firms. Artificial Intelligence.
Speed and accuracy is of vital importance so lawyers can
go through relevant information quickly and convert them Technology may one day forge ahead without mans help but,
into knowledge that can be easily consumed by clients or for now, remains a useful tool that can help lawyers do more
the court. The right knowledge, delivered at the right time for their clients faster. In particular, data modelling stands
separates good lawyers from the mediocre ones. Lawyers out as having profound implications for our industry. Data
need smarter technologies and a better way to manage modelling helps us summarise and draw deeper insights
information is urgently needed. from vast amounts of legal data. After using computing
power to identify patterns and relationships in legal data,
A New and Improved Masters Method we can map them out in powerful visualisations such as
relational webs and time/space distributions. Such insights
Without fail, David would set aside time each week to read facilitate intelligent search, and allows us to zoom in on
through the numerous law reports and journals to which he whats relevant in todays widening sea of legal information.
subscribed. He would then summarise the relevant cases
in his indices his bibles which gave case authorities While the algorithms behind data modelling vary, most
and citations for the various propositions of law, listed in seek to elicit underlying models from observed data that
alphabetical order. best explain why we observe what we observe. This can
be likened to the common law inductive reasoning process
And so, quite apart from what I carried in my memory, I which seeks to distill underlying principles that best
looked up the index, Provocation, for example, and there explain why cases turn out the way they do from the case
would be whole reams of cases. Each one with its little sub- authorities.
title about, first the name of the case and the reference
where I can find it. And then what particular point was dealt Thus, data modelling algorithms applicable to legal practice
with in respect of Provocation. generally build on two philosophical premises. The first
involves building a model that minimises the conceptual
David had six sets of index books or legal bibles covering distance between the model and the data. Put simply, the
the various aspects of substantive law and legal procedure. algorithm tries to draw a best fit line, mirroring how we
commonly argue that a legal principle is in line with the
The Masters Method from Marshall of Singapore: A authorities.
Biography by Kevin Tan
A second involves building a model which maximises the
Every law firm should be masters of valuable knowledge likelihood of observing the observed data just as how an
held in its repository; however, law firms have not yet found advocate may argue that his principle better explains why
a way to effectively capitalise on their knowledge. It is a previous courts decided one way or another.
challenge for lawyers to retrieve what they need conveniently.
Lawyers are also spending considerable amounts of time These two methods are not mutually exclusive. In practice,
engaging in onerous information management work. A many different models are tested and compared in order
living system that automatically updates, categorises and to identify the most suitable. These data models lie at the
indexes information is necessary for lawyers to generate, heart of machine learning and have been used, critiqued,
share and maintain the flow of information and knowledge and refined by statisticians, econometricians and computer
easily. This enhances efficiency as technology can be scientists for decades.
leveraged to deliver the most relevant knowledge to lawyers
instantaneously. The legal applications of data modelling are exciting. Data
modelling can help us apply a quantitative version of the
A good internal knowledge infrastructure enables law common law reasoning method to size up hundreds and
firms to meaningfully capture and register previous work thousands of cases quickly. We can then dive into the most
done by lawyers, turning it into tangible assets that go relevant trends and cases, where lawyers judgments are
towards building up institutional knowledge. An on-demand crucial. This reduces research turnaround time and widens
knowledge delivery system will free up time for lawyers to the scope of analysis done.
focus their energies on the more challenging aspects of
legal practice, instead of ploughing through mountains of The implications are clear: data modelling adds immense
information. value to the work lawyers do. Legal advice to clients can be

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Running Your Practice

buttressed with quantified measures of risk; arguments run and bring down costs. There is no better time than now to
in court can be fortified with specific statistics on precedents. reimagine the way law can be practised.

Blazing a Trail for Our Profession Chang Zi Qian

Co-founder, INTELLLEX
Ongoing, pervasive changes in technology have impacted
legal practice in Singapore. Singapore now has the most Edmund Koh
efficient justice delivery system. Our courts in Singapore are Chief of Staff/General Counsel, INTELLLEX
technologically so transformed that the next frontier has to
be the application of [artificial intelligence] [e]mbarking Jerrold Soh
upon an empirical programme of research requires a team Lex Quanta
of enthusiasts a collaborative enterprise comprising the
software engineer, legal expert and judge. Bu Fan
Lex Quanta
The Mind of Lord Denning by Dr Foo Check Teck
Singapore Law Gazette, February 2002 About INTELLLEX (
INTELLLEX is founded for one single purpose to help the legal
fraternity (Lawyers, Law Courts and Law Students hence the 3 Ls in
The time is ripe for the extension of artificial intelligence to the company name) turn their knowledge into assets. Our mission is to
the law. An increasing number of legal technology startups solve the legal practices longstanding challenge of information overload
are working to blend computer algorithms, data analytics through a productivity suite built upon a smart knowledge management
methods and legal reasoning. These companies can system. This smart knowledge management system contains cases,
help lawyers and law firms extract more value from the statutes and commentaries, serving as a connective centre for lawyers
knowledge already in their possession. The application of to store, collaborate and share knowledge. INTELLLEX creates a living
information ecosystem within the firm that is easy to use and empowers
artificial intelligence will result in an innovative information
users with knowledge that can be easily retrieved and applied.
infrastructure, and free lawyers from having to comb
through messy data and do tedious research. With reduced About Lex Quanta
inefficiencies, lawyers and law firms can focus on their Lex Quanta combines legal domain knowledge with statistical and
clients needs and therefore create more value. programming knowhow to build law-first data models sensitive to legal
principles and tailored to industry requirements. We hope to equip
These are exciting times, and this new year presents an lawyers with the analytics tools necessary to turn the legal information
opportunity to leverage on technology to improve capabilities overload problem into an opportunity to provide deep legal insights
grounded on all relevant data.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

The Young Lawyer

Amicus Agony
Dear Amicus Agony, the friendship and put this episode behind her, I am certain
an open and productive conversation with her will lead you
I learnt from a very close friend that she left for a bigger and in the right direction. If she does not respond positively to
better firm. As I was on the lookout for a job, I sought her your overtures, you have your answer right in front of you.
opinion if her team was a good place to apply to given that All the best!
there will be a vacancy following her departure. She gave
positive reviews of her boss and team. I sent my CV in. Amicus Agony

However, what subsequently transpired took me by Dear Amicus Agony,

surprise. She was furious that I had been shortlisted for the
job, and that her boss wanted to interview me. She told me I constantly feel like I am being burnt out. I often work till
that she could not accept me working for her boss (who was very late because of the pressing deadlines and demands
male) because it felt like I was dating her ex-boyfriend. She of work. I have an office with a window view that is breath-
even said that we could no longer be friends if I went for taking, except that whenever I look out of the window I no
the interview. I was shocked. She called me many names, longer admire the view but feel that I am a prisoner in my
some of which were unprintable. office. I am constantly lacking sleep. I feel tired when I am
churning out work, and my brain does not respond to me.
I have no idea why she reacted the way she did. I knew Even as I am typing this, my eyes are half-closed.
she held her boss in high esteem and had often praised her
boss. She would state that many other female colleagues I wish I can rest on weekends. However, my weekends are
vied for his attention. I had assumed it was simply office often spent on work too. There are no weekends, or rest
politics and that it was normal to want to vie for the bosss days for me. I feel like this is not what living is. I know some
attention. I am at a loss of what to do. What should I do? people withstand the long hours for the attractive pay, but
I am not even earning that much as I am in a small firm.
Shattered-and-Shocked-Associate However, my boss expects us to work as long or even more
than what the big firms make their associates do.
Dear Shattered-and-Shocked-Associate,
I do not get to meet my friends much. In fact, I often cancel
I can imagine you are going through a period of grief, hurt dinner appointments with my friends. I am still at work while
and shock. You had placed deep trust in someone whom my friends have gone ahead to meet up. I am exhausted
you have described as a very close friend and you had and frustrated. What should I do?
thought she would support you in your career decision. I
note that you had made efforts to engage with her before Exhausted Associate
applying for this job, and she did not indicate that she was
against this decision. Furthermore, you must have thought Dear Exhausted Associate,
that given that she has moved on to a bigger and better firm,
she would not mind you coming in to take over her old job. You do sound like you are burnt out. You have to pause and
ask yourself if you can see yourself working at this pace for
It appears that your friend is exceptionally close to her the next few years.
boss, and may view him as more than a boss given her
remark that she felt you would be dating her ex-boyfriend If the scenario scares you, then you need to look out for an
if you took up the role. Her strong feelings for him may have alternative job environment. Not all firms are similar, and
caused her to react unexpectedly and irrationally. In view of there may be a firm that has an environment and pace that
what has transpired, even if you do not attend the interview, suits you. You will never know if you do not try speaking with
you have to consider if the friendship still exists as it stands. people and going for interviews. You could try asking your
friends for advice in particular those who have time for
In addition, you have to decide if moving to her firm is in dinner appointments.
alignment with your career direction. If you feel strongly
that the friendship is worth salvaging, you might want to In the alternative, you could voice this out to your boss. You
consider meeting for coffee for a heart-to-heart talk. After will know your boss better than I do. As such, you will be able
all, friendship takes two to tango. If she is willing to salvage to sense if your boss is open to hearing you out. Sometimes

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

The Young Lawyer

the boss may be under the misguided impression that you this to advance your career. Have an honest chat with your
enjoy working at a breakneck pace, and that you are doing boss, and see where the conversation takes you. Good luck!

Amicus Agony

Young lawyers, the solutions to your problems are now just an e-mail away! If you are having difficulties coping with the pressures of practice,
need career advice or would like some perspective on personal matters in the workplace, the Young Lawyers Committees Amicus Agony is
here for you. E-mail your problems to

The views expressed in The Young Lawyer and the YLCs Amicus Agony column are the personal views and opinions of the author(s) in their
individual capacity. They do not reflect the views and opinions of the Law Society of Singapore, the Young Lawyers Committee or the Singapore
Law Gazette and are not sponsored or endorsed by them in any way. The views, opinions expressed and information contained do not amount
to legal advice and the reader is solely responsible for any action taken in reliance of such view, opinion or information.

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Practice Support

Traffic Accident Reconstruction

A Primer for Lawyers
Introduction trajectory analysis, identification of actions taken by parties
and determining whether their avoidance actions might
Thousands of traffic collisions have been effective.
The general
occur in Singapore each year,
objective of
giving rise to vehicular damage
traffic accident
Types of Traffic Collisions
insurance claims, medical
reconstruction is
treatment and compensation Traffic collisions may involve road vehicles such as
to determine the
claims, criminal charges for passenger cars, vans, light goods lorries, heavy trucks,
circumstances in
culpable driving, coroner buses, and vulnerable road users on motorcycles,
which the traffic
inquiries, civil suits, and other scooters, conventional and power-assisted bicycles,
collision occurred.
legal actions. Traffic accidents personal mobility device (PMD) users (skateboards, kick
exact a heavy economic and scooters, e-scooters and e-wheels) and pedestrians.
social toll in terms of medical costs, repair costs, loss of
future income, cost of investigation and legal procedures, A moving vehicle may collide with a fixed object (eg lamp-
as well as untold pain and suffering. Many of these legal, post, tree), a stationary vehicle, another moving vehicle, a
liability and financial actions require the clear and accurate bicycle, a pedestrian or an animal. Accidents may involve a
determination of specific details relating to various phases single vehicle or multiple vehicles.
of the incident.
Types of traffic crashes include: head-on (frontal), sideswipe,
In 2015, 14,982 vehicles in Singapore were involved broadside (side impact), road departure, rear-end, under-
in accidents, causing 151 fatalities and 10,412 road ride, yaw, fall, flip and rollover. Collisions may occur along
casualties.1 Drink-driving caused 134 accidents and 14 straight segments, bends, at pedestrian crossings or at
fatalities. Vulnerable road users accounted for 132 fatalities junctions. A vehicle may be turning, changing lane, merging
(87 per cent of the total): motorcyclists and pillion riders 72; into a lane, passing, crossing a junction or negotiating a
pedestrians 43; and cyclists 17. bend.

Traffic accident reconstruction draws on known information Levels of Forensic Analysis in Traffic Collisions
captured after the collision (ie, scene photographs,
measurements and physical evidence, police statements) Forensic analysis of traffic collisions relies on a working
to uncover information on the unknown conditions and knowledge of many disciplines including physics,
human actions before the collision. Traffic accident engineering, vehicle dynamics, mathematics, computer
reconstruction experts are frequently required to evaluate applications, human factors, biomechanics, forensic scene
differing or opposing statements of the parties involved analysis, trace evidence, bloodstain patterns and damage
in an incident. Traffic collision requests typically revolve analysis. Four different levels of analyses related to traffic
around determination of vehicle speed, point of impact, collisions are summarised in Table 1:
relative positions of the vehicles at the time of collision,

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Practice Support

Table 1: Different levels of forensic analyses related to Point of impact and parts of vehicles that
traffic collisions were damaged
Blind zones of a driver
Analysis Purpose
When When the driver could see the danger
Investigation Detailed process of observation,
When the driver initiated evasive action
recognition, documentation and
collection of physical evidence at Sequence of events in a multi-vehicle or
the scene and of other information chain collision
related to the collision. How Parts of vehicles that impacted, and how
Cause analysis Evaluating the combination of damage was caused
simultaneous and sequential Manner by which the vehicle occupant or
Human, Vehicle and Environment vulnerable road user was injured
(HVE) factors, without any one of Whether Were the headlamps or turn signal light
which the collision could not have switched on
Was a seatbelt worn
Traffic accident Qualitative and quantitative
Could the driver see the pedestrian or
reconstruction scientific process of determining
vehicle in time to avoid the collision
how a collision occurred, including
the circumstances, traffic situation, Did road geometry, traffic, lighting or
sequence of events, actions and weather conditions contribute to the
responses of road users, mechanics collision
and contributing factors associated Was the driver attentive or distracted
with the collision. Was the driver intoxicated or under the
Collision avoidance What-if analysis based on the influence of drugs
analysis overall circumstances to determine Did a violation of traffic regulations
if and how the collision could contribute to the collision
have been avoided when specific
parameters or conditions are Factors Contributing to Traffic Collisions
modified (eg lower initial speed,
shorter perception-response time). Traffic collisions are typically caused by one or a combination
of three types of factors: human factors (H), the vehicle
Common Questions Arising in Traffic Collisions (V), and the environment (E).

Typical questions arising in traffic collisions relate to the Human factors (H) and driver characteristics: Driver
How and five Ws: Who, What, When, Where and Whether characteristics include age, gender, driving experience,
(refer to Table 2): expectancy, health conditions, visual and auditory acuity,
personal habits, attitudes towards traffic regulations, and
Table 2: Common questions arising in traffic collisions risk-taking behavior. Risk-taking behavior includes speeding,
aggressive driving, tail-gating, alcohol consumption, not
Who Identity of the driver wearing seatbelts, and distraction by mobile devices.
Identity of the vehicle (in hit-and-run Drowsiness, fatigue and alcohol impairment adversely
accidents) affects alertness, perception, judgment and reactions.
Which road user had the right-of-way Driver expectancy is an important factor in traffic situations.
What Action or evasive manoeuvre by the driver Drivers expect normal traffic flow and compliance with
or road user traffic regulations by other road users. Collisions are not a
Speed of vehicles or road users typical drivers routine experience. When confronted with a
life-threatening emergency, uncertainties in the behavior of
Where Direction, path of the vehicles or road
other road users and the dilemma of an evasive manoeuvre,
users, and their relative positions at the
the outcome of the traffic conflict may depend more on
time of collision
the chance of the circumstances than the performance

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Practice Support

capabilities of the driver and his vehicle. Surveys reveal gaps between what can be observed, photographed and
that the majority of drivers consider themselves more skillful documented at scenes. Their accounts can be found in
and safer than the average driver. Ironically, despite this Police Statements and Traffic accident reports. Although a
self-confidence, human error is the major cause of traffic useful source of information, eye witness accounts must be
accidents. carefully evaluated against physical evidence because traffic
collisions are usually unexpected and very brief events,
Vehicle factors (V): Modern vehicles are designed and limiting reliable perception and memory. It is not surprising
manufactured to stringent safety standards for occupant that some of these accounts are reasonably accurate, while
and pedestrian protection, vehicle control and handling. others are inconsistent, unreliable and misleading.
Regular maintenance and annual vehicle inspections
minimise component failures. Supporting expert reports and documents include
medical and autopsy reports, vehicle damage reports,
Environmental factors (E): These include traffic density, vehicle specifications, trace evidence and blood alcohol
road geometry, road surface condition, weather, lighting, concentration reports.
contrast and visibility, speed limit, traffic signs and control
devices, and visual obstructions. Advances in traffic Physical evidence, witness statements and supporting
engineering and road design have improved road geometry expert reports and documents are vital for the success of
and the safety of the driving environment. traffic accident reconstruction.

Evidence from Traffic Collisions Role of the Forensic Expert

Physical evidence useful for accident reconstruction Generally, to conduct a forensic analysis of an incident,
include: skid marks, yaw marks and gouge marks on the forensic experts are engaged to:
road surface, broken vehicle debris such as lamp covers and
windshields, paint chips and smears, bloodstains, vehicle 1. visit the accident scene to document the scene, take
liquid run-offs, final rest positions of vehicles, damaged measurements and photographs, evaluate skid-marks
roadside furniture, injuries, damage on the vehicles, and on the roadway, final rest positions of the vehicles,
video evidence. debris and other physical evidence,

In hit-and-run cases,2 trace evidence3 such as paint 2. examine the vehicles for damage and transfer evidence
smears, fibres and glass, blood and damage evidence (paint, blood, glass, fibres, etc),
from the scene, suspect vehicle and victim are submitted
for laboratory analysis to provide associations and linkages 3. review prior reports, sketch plans, witness statements,
between the scene, suspect and victim. In the absence and data collected,
of physical evidence, the numerous uncertainties and
possibilities in traffic accident reconstruction may not be 4. extract, enhance and analyse video footage of an
adequately resolved or answered. accident,

For cases involving fatalities, Traffic Police (TP) officers 5. conduct simulations such as determination of blind
attending the collision scene typically identify and mark (label) zone, and evaluate various factors that potentially
physical evidence, select a reference point (eg, lamp-post), contributed to the accident.
photograph and measure the scene and damaged vehicles,
and depict locations and measurements in a sketch plan. Key Scientific Principles, Concepts and Methods
Video footage from video recordings of vehicles involved in
the collision, or from nearby vehicles and the surroundings Key principles in physics for traffic accident reconstructions
are also collected by TP. They would also visually inspect are Newtons laws of motion, the coefficient of friction,
damage on accident vehicles, documenting observations energy, conservation of linear momentum, and vehicle
in a Vehicle Damage Report. However, not every collision damage (depth of crush). Methods commonly used
will involve detailed scene investigations and collection of in accident reconstruction are based on: skid marks,
physical evidence. pedestrian throw distance, time-distance analysis and crush
depth. The choice of method depends on the incident, and
Witness statements are an important product from the type and amount of information available.
Traffic Polices investigation. Eye witnesses may fill vital

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Practice Support

Common pitfalls related to traffic accident reconstructions 5. Analysis of scene photographs and review of
include: prior documents is less informative than first-hand
examination of the fresh scene.
1. Perception-reaction time (PRT): PRT is the time
that elapses between the point where the driver sees As accident reconstruction involves many areas of
the danger and when the evasive manoeuvre (braking, qualitative and quantitative analyses, the expertise of a
steering, etc) commences. PRT is specific to the traffic multi-disciplinary traffic accident reconstruction expert is
situation, depending on the response task, the nature recommended to properly define the scope and extent of
and strength of the stimulus, lighting, conspicuity, the the analysis, evaluate case complexity, identify key issues,
drivers physical condition, cognitive load, expectancy, and mitigate or account for uncertainty in measurements,
and other factors. Collision avoidance analysis requires assumptions and limitations. Although physics formulas and
selection of the range of PRTs appropriate to the traffic equations for calculating impact speeds, collision avoidance
situation. A benchmark value of 1.5 seconds may and other information about crash vehicles are scientifically
be appropriate in the daytime under good visibility sound, results depend on the accuracy and appropriateness
conditions. Night-time PRTs may range from 1.5 to 2.5 of input values. Inappropriate input values can lead to
seconds or higher. diametrically opposite and erroneous conclusions.

2. Computer software analysis: Computer software, Defence counsel and experts may face additional
simulation programs and graphic presentation challenges, such as:
techniques have made great advances, allowing faster
calculations and slick displays. However impressive 1. Restricted, incomplete or delayed access to critical
animation displays, graphs and tables are, they may documents such as police scene photographs, sketch
not necessarily imply accuracy and quality. Modern plans, vehicle damage reports, video recordings, reports
technological aids must be responsibly and ethically and statements of witnesses. Application has to be
used without compromising on the reliability of analysis, made by defence lawyers for the different documents,
interpretations and expert opinions. some of which may be withheld, or released in parts
over time. The detailed police statements of witnesses
Challenges and Limitations in Reconstruction are usually unavailable to defence counsels, limiting the
amount of information available for the defence expert
The feasibility of reconstruction depends on, and can be to provide a holistic analysis of an incident.
limited by, the quantity and quality of information available.
Critical details and physical evidence which were not 2. Traffic Police charges $55 for each TP photograph
recognised, documented or collected at the scene is of the scene and $95 for a sketch plan.4 A full set of
permanently lost, resulting in gaps and uncertainty. photographs may cost thousands of dollars, a hefty
sum that has to be paid by the parties involved in the
1. Lack of factual information and evidence documented incident.
for non-fatal minor cases make reconstruction
unfeasible, limited or technically challenging. 3. Analysis of expert reports without access to the original
physical evidence is less informative than first-hand
2. Some marks on the roadway are faint, transient and examination of the evidence. Defence counsel and their
could be overlooked by investigators lacking experience experts are at a disadvantage when seeing through
or processing the scene under poor lighting. the lenses of others who may have missed out or
misinterpreted details.
3. Poorly collected or uncollected physical evidence such
as broken vehicle debris, and missing information 4. As a result of the highly technical nature of a traffic
such as the final position of the damaged vehicle reconstruction report, it is not easy for a lay-person
can adversely affect the scope of analyses and the to fully comprehend the significance of the forensic
definitiveness of the conclusions. findings, conclusions and limitations in the report.

4. Requests for reconstruction may be months or years

after the traffic accident, by which time roadway marks
are obliterated, damaged vehicles repaired or scrapped,
and roads even altered.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Practice Support

Local Cases Involving Traffic Accident Fatal collision between vehicle and cyclist7
On 16 May 2014, a fatal traffic accident occurred on
Selected traffic cases which our forensic experts have Woodlands Avenue 5 involving a car and a cyclist. TFEG
reported on include: was engaged to review the Health Sciences Authoritys
(HSA) report, analyse video footage from the drivers car,
AYE 4-vehicle accident case5 and evaluate the drivers statement, police sketch plan,
scene photographs and reports in order to provide a second
Just after midnight on 19 February 2012, assistant opinion. The key findings and conclusions in TFEGs report
supervisor Seow Hong Xuan, 35 was driving his car on the were significantly different from the HSAs report. During
AYE towards Tuas when it rear-ended the motorcycle of the second tranche of the trial, the Attorney-Generals
Malaysian Tan Kin Heng, 41. Tans motorbike skidded and Chambers re-amended the charge from causing death by a
he was projected onto the roadway. Stopping his car on the negligent act under section 304(b) of the Penal code to did
centre lane, Seow switched on his hazard lights and went to drive without reasonable consideration for other road users,
check on the motorcyclist. Accident reconstruction revealed to wit, by driving at a speed in excess of the prescribed road
a taxi driven by Han Choo Bok approaching the scene at a speed limit of 60 kmph and failing to give way to a pedal
speed of 101 to 107 km/h, and rear-ending Seow's stationary cyclist, causing the collision which resulted in the death
unmanned car. The impact pushed the car forward, fatally of the cyclist and committing an offence punishable under
striking both Seow and Tan. The propelled car then struck section 65(b) of the Road Traffic Act, Chapter 276.
the rear of a lorry passing on the left lane. The speed limit
on the AYE was 90 km/h. Han, 38, was jailed for 10 months Reversing vehicle accident8
and disqualified from driving for eight years.
On Monday afternoon, 13 June 2011, Australian expat
Bus accident that led to the Little India Riot6 home-maker Mrs Harrington returned home. She stopped
her MPV along the road, opened the metal gates, got back
On Sunday night, at about 9.07 pm, 8 December 2013, into the drivers seat and started reversing into the driveway
an inebriated Indian national, 33-year old Sakthivel of her bungalow. Unknown to her, her two-year old son was
Kumaravelu was running after a moving bus that fetched running up to the car. As she continued reversing and turning
foreign workers back to dormitories in Tuas. TFEGs experts the car, it knocked down and ran over the little boy. Despite
were engaged by Traffic Police to determine the trajectory the car being equipped with a rearview video camera and
and speed of the bus, movement of the deceased, blind monitor in addition to the rearview and wing mirrors, the
zone of the driver and the circumstances of the incident. small boy had been hidden in the side and rear blind zones
Our experts conducted scene analysis, examined the trace of the MPV most of the time during his movements.
evidence on the deceased's clothing, bloodstain pattern
on the bus, and the damage on the interior of the bus. Conclusion
Reconstruction revealed that the bus initially travelled at 6
km/h along Tekka Lane, and accelerated to 11 km/h while Traffic accident reconstruction, cause analysis and collision
turning left onto Race Course Road. As the bus was turning avoidance analysis are a technically challenging forensic
and off-tracking (rear tyres pulling inward of the steering discipline due to the required working knowledge of many
path), Sakthivel unfortunately came alongside, and placed areas in science and engineering. Traffic collisions often
his right palm against the left side of the bus. He lost his involve a complex combination of many factors. A traffic
balance, fell onto the road and was run over by the bus. accident reconstruction report may appear to be generally
Key contributing factors were: rainy weather and wet roads, readable, but owing to its highly technical nature, it is unlikely
congested human and vehicular traffic which imposed that its contents, methodology and underlying assumptions
heavy cognitive demands on the 55-year-old driver, and can be fully comprehended and independently appraised
the unexpected actions of alcohol impaired Sakthivel who by a lay-person. As custodians of domain knowledge,
was coincidentally hidden in the drivers blind zone during information and opinions that can influence the course of
critical moments, and his fall in the bus's path as it made its justice, the forensic expert must adhere to strict principles of
turn. The accident sparked Singapores worst riot in over professional ethics and responsibility. Knowledge must be
40 years. The damage analysis findings were used in the correctly applied, and findings must be based on evidence
prosecution of the rioters. and not on speculation.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Practice Support

This forensic discipline has the potential to provide * The Forensic Experts Group (TFEG) is Singapores first one-stop
information to critical questions arising from a traffic collision. private and independent provider of forensic consultancy, analysis,
research, training and education for legal and law enforcement
Hence, it is useful to investigators, the Court, insurance
agencies, forensic and tertiary institutions, and private organisations. It
companies, parties involved, and the public. comprises a team of accomplished and innovative forensic scientists,
who are combining 75 years of specialised knowledge, unique
Whats Next? experience and skillsets to deliver high quality forensic services both
locally and overseas. While leading the Forensic Chemistry & Physics
The next article by The Forensic Experts Group in this Laboratory at the Health Sciences Authority, TFEGs senior forensic
Forensic Science Series takes a look at Counterfeit Drugs scientists developed traffic accident reconstruction capabilities since
and Medical Devices. The general concepts and principles
behind the analysis of unknown chemicals and materials, Notes
forensic toxicology, controlled drugs, marks and prints
1 Yearbook of Statistics Singapore, 2016. Section 17.11 Road Traffic Accident
are applicable to the analysis of counterfeit drugs. The Casualties (page 192) Department of Statistics, Singapore.
article will address the science behind the discipline, and
2 4-week jail sentence for GP who caused cyclists death in hit-and-run, AsiaOne (25
the methodology commonly adopted for examining and May 2012).
reporting on cases involving counterfeit products.
3 PP v Wan Chin Hon [2005] SGHC 121.

The Forensics Experts Group* 4

E-mail: 5 Freak accident on AYE: Cabby jailed 10 months, Straits Times (9 Apr 2013).

6 Report of the Committee of Inquiry into the Little India Riot on 8 December 2013
Annexes, pages B11B13, June 2014. Ministry of Home Affairs.

7 PP v Koh Ah Hong MAC 908396 of 2014.

8 Boy, 2, dies after being hit by mums car., AsiaOne (15 June 2011).

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Alter Ego

New Year Wishes

As we start the new year, many of us look back at 2016 relationships are important to me. But relationships are
with mixed feelings. 2016 was significant with many often undermined in Singapore due to not only our lifestyles
unprecedented events taking place and the passing of but technology as well. How often do people look up from
individuals which will change and reshape the world. their mobile devices to have a proper conversation?

For me, it was a year filled with activities. It was also a This brings me to my second wish of humans controlling
year where a lot of time, too much time, was spent on law technology. Technology is seen more as a disrupter than
practice. By the middle year I already felt burnt out. This an enabler due to the overwhelming place it enjoys in our
year there were many new year greetings on social media lives. With increasingly sophisticated robots and artificial
peppered with reminders to work less and enjoy life more. intelligence usurping what was once done by human
If only it were that easy. Putting aside the demands of work, beings, it seems that technology is slowly taking control of
we work also for financial reasons and there is pressure to Earth. Although I support technology in improving our work
keep jobs in the current economic downturn. and making us more efficient and productive, we must not
forget our own unique position and the need for human
As the new year begins, everyone wants to put their best communication, contact and warmth. The reality is many
foot forward. I do not believe in resolutions, because it is of us nowadays we have little direct communication with
pass and often nothing comes out of it. I rather make one another which strains relations and does not resolve
wishes which in turn create hope. As Michelle Obama said disputes.
in her final emotional speech as the United States First
Lady, hope is essential in life. Hope leads to positivity, which As a mediator, I often hear that the disputants only physical
in turn creates a bright future. meeting with each other was at the mediation session
where they are forced to listen to each other. If they had
As I reach the 20th year of legal practice and this column done so much earlier, they could have resolved the dispute
celebrates its 15th year, I have many wishes. or prevented it from escalating into a law suit. E-mails,
WhatsApp and Facebook may provide swift forms of
I want to create intimate, fulfilling and emotionally communication but not necessarily effective ones.
satisfying relationships with people. As clich as it sounds,

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Alter Ego

My third wish is that changes should happen slowly so that to carry out. Later in an e-mail exchange, he referred to me
they have a chance to grow and find their place. Changes as an honorary millennial!
are now happening so quickly that we do not even have
time to become aware of them and adapt to them. And It is not only the millennials who have different views of
then the next change comes along. As not all changes are life and its purpose. As people grow older and realise they
beneficial, it is worthwhile to think them over, assess if they have devoted too much of their lives to their careers, some
are even necessary, take the time to properly craft them decide to spend more time on themselves and engage in
and implement them. After all, change should not happen activities which give a different meaning to their lives. I find
for change sake. myself in this group of people. Having worked hard as a
lawyer for 20 years, the wish now is to focus on myself and
My fourth wish is to embrace calmness. Only people very take care of myself.
close to me know of my lack of patience and quick outbursts.
I admire people who are not easily ruffled and are very calm And so here starts the year a year filled with many
under difficult circumstances. impending changes, worries about job security and impact
on personal finances. Will it be a bad year as some fear?
My fifth wish is to be more tolerant and less judgmental of Let us hope ... hope for a good year. Have a meaningful
others. Patience towards others and remaining silent at the new year!
appropriate times requires practice. Often, we only look
out for ourselves without considering the needs of others.
Nurturing others is part of personal leadership.
Rajan Chettiar
Recently, I met a young man who had joined a newly Rajan Chettiar LLC
formed organisation. I shared my concerns that the young E-mail:
generation will face a tough future and whether their current
life values will hinder them and make their future bleak.
Agreeing with me, he remarked that I am a millennial at
heart when he learnt about the many future projects I plan

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Feast with Ease

Theres no need to wait for thirsty Friday for that hard-earned drink! Weve found some great places boasting good food at
great value for you to wind down at the end of a busy day.

Merchants Wine Cellar Website:

Duxton Hill is peppered with rows of restaurants that
reviewers havent stopped raving about. Have you tried Please note that menu prices may vary from time of writing.
them all? Weve found one that you might have missed!
City Hot Pot Shabu Shabu
Check out Merchants Wine Cellar at Duxton Hill for a great
selection of boutique wine bottles from Australia and New Perhaps youre looking for something more to satisfy that
Zealand, available at one of the most reasonable prices in growling stomach before letting the drinks take over?
the area.
Head to City Hot Pot Shabu Shabu for a hearty meal and
Merchants has a unique concept; it presents wines from some wine and/or beer that wont leave a gaping hole in
small-time family-owned winemakers that youre unlikely your pocket.
to find elsewhere on the continent. The winemakers
themselves decide the price of each bottle, and the cellars Located conveniently on the fourth floor of One Raffles
co-op of winemakers shares its operational costs. The Place, City Hot Pot Shabu Shabu provides you with a
ambience is comfortably cosy, and were told they also personal hot pot, with your choice of soup, noodles, and
host regular wine-tasting events whereby the winemakers meat, along with a basket of vegetables. They also offer a
themselves visit for a night of tippling and sharing their soup combo with a two-compartment hotpot, so you get to
knowledge. try two varieties of soup. We tried the Korean kimchi and the
fish soup with milk. The kimchi soup was spicy and rich in
Whats more, while they have a large variety of wines flavour, and the fish soup with milk had a balanced flavour.
ranging from $30$200, most bottles fall affordably in the The sets for one pax range from $20$34.
range of $30$50. Wines by the glass are available for as
low as $10$12, and there is a much larger variety available As for drinks, while they do not offer a large variety, a decent
by the glass than at most other places, making it a great range of wines, beers and sake is available to suit different
option if you are looking to try different varieties of wine. tastes. We ordered a $48 bottle of mid-ranged red wine, and
found that it went well with our meal.
Well-versed and keen to share their knowledge, the staffs at
Merchants are ever-ready to recommend their latest wines We also found the staff to be friendly and prompt in their
in store. Feel free to request any wines to suit your taste. service, though we are not sure if thats attributable to the
fact that we happened to be accompanied by a, quoting the
As far as food is concerned, Merchants offers a simple waitress, shuai ge (handsome guy).
selection of food options to complement your choice of wine.
Whilst Merchants isnt the place for those with more refined Given the large serving portions, at $30$40 per person,
taste buds, it is certainly worth adjourning to after dinner if we found our dinner to be a steal, and would certainly
all you are looking for are some bar snacks to nibble on as recommend a visit, especially on a rainy day when your
you enjoy your wine. tummy is in need of some warmth and you cannot venture
out too far from the CBD.
All in all, we found Merchants to be good value for money,
and a fantastic place to relax with some friends over wine. Address: #04-28, One Raffles Place, Singapore
Were definitely heading down for their next tasting event! 048616
Phone: 6536 2185
Address: 52 Duxton Rd, Singapore 089516 Opening Hours: 11.30am3pm; 5pm10pm
Phone: 6222 1162 Website:
Opening hours: MondayFriday: 8am till late; Saturday: cityhotpotshabushabu/
10am till late; Sunday: 12noon10.00pm

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Please note that menu prices may vary from time of writing. if you dialled the right number as Chef Ichiyama usually
answers in Japanese before breaking out in fluent English.
Perhaps hotpot is a little too much and you are not ready
to slip into a food coma. Then again with the plethora of Dont be surprised if it is hard to find Sushi Kaishin, for it is
choices, it can be difficult to decide where or what to eat! truly a hidden gem tucked away in a corner on the quieter
How about letting the chef decide? side of Robertson Walk. It is located closer to the water, and
farther from Unity Street.
Google Best omakase in Singapore and amongst the first
hits is Shinji by Kanesaka Raffles Hotel. But it isnt every As a personal favourite, the lunch Fuji course ($60++)
day that one can afford to eat at the recently crowned three offers 11 courses including dessert. Each course is
Michelin-starred establishment. Where then can we turn to meticulously prepared with the freshest ingredients which
fix the craving without breaking the bank? Chef Ichiyama imports directly from Japan.

Sushi Kaishin () Each set is unique as Chef Ichiyama decides but typically
begins with a lightly dressed salad to whet the taste buds
Sushi Kaishin offers lunch sets to please your palate and and a miso soup with delightful baby clams. Feel free to
your pocket starting from $28, and dinner ranges from request any items which you may particularly desire;
$100++ to $200++. hotate (scallop), anago (fresh water eel), or perhaps the
unassuming tamago to end off the meal?
The authentic Japanese experience begins when you try
calling Sushi Kaishin for reservations: you might wonder Well let the food do the talking:

Needless to say, this otoro (tuna belly) had that melt-in-the-mouth effect.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017


Aburi anago (fresh water eel) torched to perfection.

Step out of your hectic schedule and into this cosy

A mandatory course.
restaurant. You might forget that you havent left Singapore.

Address: #01-04, 30 Robertson Quay, Singapore

Phone: 6733 3720
Opening Hours: Daily (including public holidays); 11.30am
3pm (last order at 2pm); 6pm11pm (last
order at 10pm)

Please note that the menu prices on Sushi Kaishins

website may not be updated. Prices quoted in this article
are accurate as at December 2016.

Os Agarwal
Chef Ichiyama also offers an all-tuna special course, for die- Wong Thomas & Leong
hard tuna fans. Member, Young Lawyers Committee 2016
Pair your omakase meal with sake! Sushi Kaishin offers
several different types of sake including those of the Junmai
Daijinjyo grade and you are bound to find one that matches
your taste. From our experience, Chef also kindly obliges Mifiona Quah
a drink or two. They do have a selection of beers though Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP
in our view, sake goes better. Cant decide? Ask the Chef! Member, Young Lawyers Committee 2016
If bringing your own bottle is preferred, the corkage charge
is $50 per bottle.

Singapore Law Gazette January 2017

Information on Wills

Name of Deceased (Sex)

NRIC Solicitors/Contact
Date of Death Last Known Address Person Reference
Liew Pit Yoke (F) No. 4 Jalan Setia 8/22 Ong Beng Leong & Co. OPC
Malaysian ID No. 690926- Taman Setia Indah 6241 0687
08-6188 (A1354477) 81100 Johor Bahru, Johor
15 June 2015 Malaysia
Ng Hwee Cheng @ Ng 7 Draycott Drive Belinda Ang Tang & Partners BA.2016.621039.AD
Hwee Cheng Doreen @ #12-02 6379 5757
Doreen Hwee Cheng Ng (F) Singapore 259421
10 October 2016
Ler Soo Yap (M) Blk 361 Yishun Ring Road ComLaw LLC GC.2016.213731
S0395825F #03-1656 6538 1822
19 July 2016 Singapore 760361
Khoo Yeow Choo (F) Blk 72 Telok Blangah Heights Loh Lin Kok LLK.G.8045.16
S0793243Z #03-319 6337 2136
1 January 2016 Singapore 100072
Lim Poh Tee (F) Blk 520 West Coast Road JLim Law Corporation JLM/1606/11/16
S2018771I #04-651 6227 5538
31 May 2016 Singapore 120520
Chua Kim Hang (M) Blk 32 Eunos Crescent Goodwins Law Corporation KL/EK/20169819
S1715210F #11-218 6464 9449
23 November 2016 Singapore 400032
Lim Khoon Luah (M) 60 Namly Garden Cheong & Koh CGE/5839.16
S0719275D Singapore 267388 6226 4487
6 August 2016
Koh Kah Wei (Gu Jiawei) Blk 301C Anchorvale Drive Kim & Co. LKH/NM/jt/P16367/KYX
(M) #12-37 6222 7263
S8618349H Singapore 543301
29 October 2016
Berannath s/o Ram Blas (M) Blk 11 Haig Road Aequitas Law LLP 65350131
S0162853D #04-389 6535 0331
25 October 2016 Singapore 430011
Lee Hee Huat (M) 206 Yio Chu Kang Road Cheong & Koh CGE/5837.16
S0503076E Singapore 545652 6226 4487
19 March 2016
Ng Hong Pin (M) Blk 12 Woodsville Close Hoh Law Corporation TZ/20160070588P/ju
S0439147J #03-02 6488 4182
15 November 2016 Singapore 357768
Pereira Lolly @ Lorita Irene Blk 135 Lorong Ah Soo Sureshan LLC SK.16-040.P
Pereira (F) #06-490 6733 6229
S0771642G Singapore 530135
2 May 2016
Low Hong Teck (M) Blk 352 Hougang Ave 7 AY Khoo Law Chambers KAY612/16
S0121805J #03-739 6456 6146
5 November 2016 Singapore 530352
Law practices are encouraged to submit their Information on Wills requests via the online form available at our website > For Members > eForms
> Information on Wills. Using the online form ensures that requests are processed quicker and details published with accuracy.
Effective 1 January 2017, the rates for Information on Wills will be revised to S$107 per entry for law firms. All submissions must reach us by the 5th day of the preceding
Head, Legal & Secretariat 8+ PQE Legal Counsel & Corporate Secretarial 4-6 PQE
Real Estate Singapore Shipping Singapore
[S41019] [S40956]

Senior role to advise on a full range of issues Corporate commercial and/or disputes
including M&A, JVs, franchise and hospitality experience (preferably both) required
matters, fund raising and general corporate Experience in corporate secretarial work and
matters able to advise on all aspects of corporate
Experience in listco company secretarial matters is secretarial work and corporate governance
required Shipping law or shipping litigation experience
Corporate real estate experience would be an highly advantageous
advantage Must be admitted to the Singapore bar
Will work closely with senior management APAC coverage

Litigation / Construction Lawyer 8+ PQE Part-time Counsel 4-6 PQE

Consortium Singapore 6 month contract Singapore
[S40949] [S41006]

Construction experience contentious or non- To work with an MNC client

contentious ideal Flexibility to work 2-3 days a week
Commercial litigation experience will also be Option to work from home
considered favourably Strong corporate experience, ideally M&A
To handle a varied range of commercial contracts Contract to commence in Feb 2017
No travel required

Attorney 15+ PQE

Legal Counsel 6+ PQE US MNC Bangalore, India
Payments Singapore [S40501]
Be a key member of the leadership team of a
To provide legal and regulatory advice for
leading MNC
online payments and remittances, interbank
Responsibilities entail negotiating high value,
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complex deals and general executive support
Knowledge of general banking, securities and
Team management and strong leadership skills
financial services related regulations would be
IT industry experience ideal
Excellent interpersonal and communications skills
Competitive remuneration package on offer
is key to this hire

Head of Legal 6-8 PQE Trust & Compliance Officer 10-14 PQE
Commodities Singapore US MNC Bangalore, India
[S41013] [S40954]

Sole counsel role To drive corporate compliance programs

To advise on a wide range of issues, throughout South Asia, maintain appropriate
including corporate, M&A and financing processes and operating mechanisms to meet
matters policy compliance & regulatory responsibilities,
Familiarity with the commodities and/or identify key compliance needs, determine risks,
shipping industry would be ideal improve controls, and provide training support
Coverage - primarily Singapore and Hong Kong, Experience in directing/leading compliance
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Strong interpersonal skills

IT Counsel 4-7 PQE M&A Corporate Counsel 6+ PQE

Technology MNC Singapore US MNC Mumbai, India
[S41008] [S40760]

To manage transaction deals and draft, review, Strong M&A and investments background
and negotiate several types of contractual Licensed to practise law in India
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Open to candidates without IT background, (e.g., public company, private company, stock
but experience in consulting, systems integration, purchase, asset purchase, cross-border, etc.)
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advantage investments transactions in the technology
You must be a self-starter, driven and with a sector, start-up or early stage companies,
positive learning attitude preferred
Candidates from private practice will be Flexible and willing to work extended hours when
considered necessary
Happy Chinese New Year
from all of us at Pure Search.

We wish you a prosperous 2017.

Michelle Koh | Commerce & Industry | R1102371

+65 6407 1202 |
Paulin Tan | Law Firms | R1433787
+65 6407 1056 |
Alexandra Starke | Law Firms | R1222863
+65 6407 1052 |
Sonia Taylor | Law Firms | R1652822 Pure Search International Pte Ltd,
+65 6407 1074| 8Marina View, #07-04 Asia Square,Tower 1,
Singapore 018960
Claudia Dumitru | Financial Services | R1324026
+65 6407 1205| Company Registration No.:201209597C |EA License No.: 12S5954