May 2015

Amendment to Form 9I for recording of consent judgments for personal injury or motor accident cases; and a new Form 9C(A) for Order 37 directions in case where Order 108 of the Rules of Court applies.

State Courts Practice Directions Amendment No. 5 of 2015 have made changes to the existing Form 9I for recording consent judgments or terms of settlement for non-injury motor accident, personal injury motor accident and other personal injury matters.

In addition, with the implementation of the Simplified Process for proceedings in the Magistrates’ Courts under Order 108 of the Rules of Court for writs filed on or after 1st November 2014, cases for which interlocutory judgment is entered will, unless otherwise directed by the Court, be fixed for a simplified Assessment of Damages. Pursuant to Order 108, Rule 5(3) of the Rules of Court, parties will have to appoint a single joint expert, failing which, the Court will appoint one on their behalf. The appointment of a single joint expert applies to all types of cases.  A new Form 9C(A) has been created for the recording of Order 37 directions for such cases.

The existing form 9C should continue to be used for case to which Order 108 does not apply.

May 2015

Court ADR Fees and Skype Mediation

At the launch of the State Courts Centre for Dispute Resolution, The Honourable the Chief Justice highlighted that the State Courts had been studying a possible charging structure for ADR services. His Honour announced that ADR fees would be introduced for higher value civil claims in the District Courts, with the exclusion of non-injury motor accident claims, personal injury claims as well as cases under the Protection from Harassment Act. The Rules of Court (Amendment) Rules 2015 have been passed to introduce Court ADR fees of $250 per party for DC cases under Order 90A rule 5A and will take effect from 1 May 2015 onwards.

The State Courts Practice Directions have been amended to implement this change. Solicitors should take note of paragraph 25, subparagraphs (7) and (8).  

The amendments to the Practice Directions have also introduced guidelines for the use of Skype at mediation in the following circumstances:

(a)    The overseas party (not being a corporation) is unable to travel to Singapore on certified medical grounds, or provides other evidence of inability to travel to Singapore for mediation; or
(b)    The overseas party is a foreign incorporated company with no local presence and/or representative.

Solicitors may refer to paragraph 25, subparagraphs (23) to (26) for details.

March 2015

State Courts Centre for Dispute Resolution

The State Courts Centre for Dispute Resolution was launched by The Honourable the Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon on 4 March 2015. Read His Honour’s launch speech here.

This Centre has consolidated the different Court ADR services which used to be offered through discrete departments, with the view to providing an integrated and holistic approach to resolve each conflict. The Centre now provides ADR services for civil claims, Magistrate’s Complaints lodged in relation to minor criminal offences in the Crime Registry, as well as other relational disputes such as applications under the Protection from Harassment Act. The previous Primary Dispute Resolution Centre, that provided ADR services for civil claims, has been subsumed within this new Centre.
  

​​May 2014

Expansion of Presumption of ADR

The State Courts Practice Directions Amendment No. 4 of 2014, which was passed on 19 March 2014, took effect on 1 April 2014.

These amendments expand the "Presumption of ADR" for civil suits (excluding motor accident and personal injury claims). Apart from summonses for directions, the "presumption" and the requirement to file the ADR Form will now apply to cases that are called for pre-trial conferences 4 months after the writ is filed. PTCs will be called for cases in which 4 months have lapsed from the date of writ; a Defence has been filed; no SFD or application for summary judgment, striking out, stay, transfer or consolidation of proceedings has been taken out; and no CDR session has been fixed.

The presumption of ADR was first introduced in May 2012 in consultation with a Law Society working group. The principles of this scheme, which was publicised in the Law Society Gazette, remains the same.

The changes to our Practice Directions apply to writs filed on or after 1 April 2014. In order to help lawyers be familiar with these new PTCs, the State Courts will be introducing a pilot from 5 May 2014 onwards. PTC letters will be sent to lawyers involved in the relevant 4-month old writs. Formal implementation will then take place in August 2014.

30 September 2013

eLitigation

The Practice Directions have been amended from 30 September 2013 onwards to introduce eLitigation. Please note the following changes to practice within PDRC:

(a) Requests for CDR should no longer be faxed using Form 7 of the Practice Directions. Form 7 has been deleted. All Requests for CDR must be filed through eLitigation. Refer to this guide for steps on filing the Request.

(b) Requests for adjournment or vacation of CDR sessions should no longer be faxed using Form 8 of the Practice Directions. Form 8 has been deleted. A "Request for Re-fixing/Vacation of Hearing Dates" must now be filed through eLitigation. Please also refer to the above guide for steps on filing this request.

(c) Correspondence to PDRC should no longer be faxed to PDRC. The relevant "request" has to be filed through eLitigation. Refer to paragraph 139 of the Practice Directions.

(d) Minor changes have been made to the Opening Statement Template for Neutral Evaluation. Opening Statements for both Mediation and Neutral Evaluation may be downloaded on this website. These should be tendered in hard copy to PDRC at least 2 days before the mediation or neutral evaluation. As "without prejudice" documents, they should not be filed within eLitigation.

(e) NIMA and PI cases: A new Form 9I (recording settlement / entering judgment by consent) has been introduced. All other forms (indication forms, Form 9C for O37 directions) have not been changed.

Mediation Advocacy

The Singapore Mediation Centre launched its inaugural Mediation Advocacy workshop for lawyers in May 2013, with the support of the Subordinate Courts and Law Society. These regular workshops are now being run by Singapore Mediation Centre. Sign up to learn how to represent and advance your clients' interests more effectively during mediation.

Please refer also to an article on Mediation Advocacy written by PDRC in September 2012.

August 2012

The Practice Directions have been amended on 22 August 2012, and took effect on 22 November 2012. The amendments modify the Pre-Action Protocol for personal injury claims, by introducing a Single Joint Expert Scheme for case in which damages are less than $20,000. New forms for writing to medical experts may be found in these amendments and on this website.
14 May 2012

The Practice Directions have been amended on 14 May 2012, and will take effect on 28 May 2012. The amendments introduce a "Presumption of ADR" for civil cases, and amalgates all provisions within the Subordinate Courts Practice Directions concerning ADR for civil disputes. The ADR Form has been modified and a few new forms added. Read more about these amendments in the May issue of the Law Gazette. The updated forms may be downloaded on this website.
October 2011

A Registrar's Circular has been issued on 29 September 2011 and will take effect on 17 October 2011. This Circular introduces a pilot programme to use Neutral Evaluation as a new ADR process. Read more about Neutral Evaluation below on this website, and in a Law Gazette article.
April 2011

A Practice Direction has been released on 5 April 2011 and will take effect on 1 May 2011. The main changes include a) A pre-action protocol for personal injury claims, and Court Dispute Resolution sessions for all such claims; and b) a pre-repair inspection requirement for non-injury motor accident cases; c) new and updated forms for Court Dispute Resolution.
October 2010

The Subordinate Courts together with the Singapore Academy of Law have published a quick-reference book entitled Guidelines for the Assesment of General Damages in Personal Injury Cases, providing information on the estimated quantum of damages to be expected from a wide range of injuries suffered. Click here to access an extract from the book concerning neck injuries.
August 2010​

The PDRC has released a video illustrating the mediation process for civil cases in court. This video explains the purpose and benefits of mediation, and also provides tips on being well prepared for the mediation process.
May 2010

The Subordinate Courts have released a Practice Direction requiring an Alternative Dispute Resolution Form to be filed at the Summons for Directions stage. The Practice Direction took effect on 17 May 2010. Click here to read more about the ADR Form.
2010

A Code of Ethics and Basic Principles on Court Mediation is available for public reference. This document sets out the key ethical principles underlying mediation in the Subordinate Courts. It elaborates on court mediators' shared values and the key principles governing how mediation should be conducted in the Subordinate Courts. Click hereo access the Code.​​

Last updated on: 16/5/2016 4:31 PM
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