Authorities

 Singapore - Central Authority (Art. 2) and practical information
Address

Central Authority(ies):

Registrar of the Supreme Court

Contact details:

Address:

Supreme Court of Singapore
1 Supreme Court Lane
Singapore 178879

Telephone:

(+65) 6332-3912

Fax:

(+65) 6337-9450

E-mail:

[email protected]  

General website:

http://www.supremecourt.gov.sg/

Contact person:

Registrar of the Supreme Court

Languages spoken by staff:

English

Practical Information
(The following information was provided by the relevant State authorities or was obtained from the replies to the 2008 Evidence Convention Questionnaire)

Blocking statutes:

Singapore does not have specific foreign statutes but we have general statutory provisions that prevent disclosure of matters relating to State interests.

Chapter I
(Letters of Requests)

Transmission of Letters of Requests:

Letters of Request are first sent to the Central Authority or to another authority of the requesting State before being sent to the Central Authority of the requested State

Authority responsible for informing of the time and place of the execution of Letter of Request (Art. 7):

Attorney-General's Chambers.

Presence of judicial personnel at the execution of the Letter of Request (Art. 8):

No declaration of applicability.

Privileges and duties existing under the law of States other than the State of origin and the State of execution (Art. 11):

No declaration of applicability.

Translation requirements (Arts 4(2) and 33): 

Accepts Letters of Requests written in or translated into English.

Costs relating to execution of the Letters of Request (Arts 14(2)(3) and 26):

Singapore seeks reimbursement of costs under Art. 14(2) and (3).

There are constitutional limitations with regard to the reimbursement of fees and costs, in connection with the execution of Letters of Request, for the service of process necessary to compel the appearance of a person to give evidence, the costs of attendance of such persons, and the costs of any transcript of the evidence (Art. 26). From our past cases, the approximate amount of fees and costs incurred in applying for an order for the examination of the witness and in obtaining and serving the process to compel the witness' attendance ranged from S$1,200 to S$1,500. The exact amount depends primarily on the quantity of documents to be filed and served. For every page of the Notes of Evidence, parties pay S$2.50.

Time for execution:

Time for execution may vary depending on the request.

Art 23 pre-trial discovery of documents:

Letter of Request may be executed subject to certain conditions (qualified execution).

Information about domestic rules on the taking of evidence: 

Evidence (Civil Proceedings in Other Jurisdictions) Act, Chapter 98, Revised Laws of Singapore and Order 66 of the Rules of Court, Chapter 322, Rule 5, Revised Laws of Singapore.

Witness examination under Chapter I

Should Letters of Request include specific questions to be used during witness examination or only a list of matters to be addressed?

In the absence of local counsel representing the party requesting evidence to be taken, specific questions are required.

Is it a public or private hearing?

Public hearing.

Do the judicial authorities "blue-pencil" Letters of Requests (i.e. rephrase, restructure and / or strike out objectionable questions or offensive wording so that a Letter of Request may be executed under the laws of the requested State)?

No.

Is the witness provided in advance with a copy of the questions / matters to be addressed as contained in the Letter of Request?

This is a matter for judicial interpretation and has not been determined conclusively or subject to judicial interpretation in Singapore.

Are documents produced by the witness authenticated by the court?

Yes.

Is an oath generally administered to the witness?

Yes.

Can the witness be made subject to further examination and recall?

Yes, first request may be reinvoked.

Are there sanctions for non-appearance of witness?

Contempt of court proceedings.

Must interpreters who assist with the witness examination be court-certified?

Yes.

How is the testimony transcribed?

Through Notes of Evidence certified by the Assistant Registrar.

Chapter II
(Taking of evidence by diplomatic officers, consular agents and commissioners)

Article 15

Not applicable.

Article 16

Not applicable.

Article 17

Not applicable.

Article 18

Not applicable.

Taking of evidence by video-links
(under either chapter)
 

Chapter I

Are there legal obstacles to the use of video links?

No. Article 9 of the Convention provides that the judicial authority which executes a Letter of Request shall apply its own law as to the methods and procedures to be followed. In this regard, section 4(1) of the Evidence (Civil Proceedings in Other Jurisdictions) Act, Chapter 98, Revised Laws of Singapore gives the High Court the power by order to make such provision for obtaining evidence in Singapore as may appear to the High Court to be appropriate for the purpose of giving effect to the request. This includes the taking of evidence by video-link.

Technology used:

A secured video-link on a private network is utilised.

Level of interpretation required:

No information available.

Simultaneous or in sequence interpretation:

No information available.

Interpretation required in which jurisdiction?

No information available.

Who pays for the interpretation?

No information available.

How would a request for evidence be handled if witness not willing?

Not applicable.

Chapter II

Are there legal obstacles to the use of video links?

Not applicable.

Technology used:

Not applicable.

Level of interpretation required:

Not applicable.

Simultaneous or in sequence interpretation:

Not applicable.

Interpretation required in which jurisdiction?

Not applicable.

Who pays for the interpretation?

Not applicable.

Bilateral or multilateral agreements

Not applicable.

Useful links:

 

(This page was last updated on 1 September 2010)

Conventions