What is the Small Claims Tribunals?

​The Small Claims Tribunals (the “Tribunals”) are part of the State Courts of Singapore. The Tribunals were established on 1 February 1985 to provide a quick and inexpensive forum for the resolution of small claims between consumers and suppliers.Laptop Icon

From 10 July 2017, the Tribunals will be using an electronic case filing and management system called CJTS (Community Justice and Tribunals System). CJTS allows parties involved in disputes to file claims and access Court e-services from the comfort of their homes or any place with an internet connection. For more information on CJTS, please refer to this promotional brochure.

An order of the Tribunals is of the same force and effect as an order of a Magistrate’s Court, and may be enforced accordingly.

Jurisdiction of the Tribunals

The Tribunals hear claims not exceeding $10,000. This limit can be raised to $20,000 if both parties agree to it and file a Memorandum of Consent online. A claim cannot be split or divided to bring it within the Tribunals' jurisdiction.

All claims must be filed within 1 year from the date on which the cause of action accrued, that is, the day the facts arose to give rise to a right to sue. For example, if a cause of action accrued on 5 January 2016, the last day to file the claim would be on 4 January 2017.

The Tribunals only hear specific types of cases. Click here to find out if your claim is covered by the Small Claims Tribunals.

Main Stages at the Tribunals

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Proceedings at the Tribunals begin when a claim is filed.

A person who files a claim is a “claimant”. A claimant files a claim against a “respondent”. A respondent can also file a "counterclaim" against the claimant in the same claim.

For claims filed after 10 July 2017, all parties are required to submit their claims / counterclaims online through CJTS.

 

The applicable fees for filing a claim or counterclaim are:

Claim / Counterclaim Amount Consumers Non-Consumers
Up to $5,000$10$50
Between $5,000 and $10,000$20$100

More than $10,000, up to $20,000*

* Consent of both parties required. A Memorandum of Consent must be filed/uploaded.

1% of claim amount3% of claim amount

   
 After a claim is filed, a Consultation date will be fixed for parties to appear before the Registrar in Court. At a Consultation, the Registrar will:

  • Assess if a claim is within the Tribunals’ jurisdiction
  • Give parties an opportunity to discuss their cases with a view to resolving their dispute amicably
  • Where parties are unable to settle a matter, fix the matter for a Hearing before a judge (Referee), or make such other orders as it deems fit

Note: Lawyers are not allowed to represent any of the parties in proceedings before the Tribunals.

Where a case is fixed for Hearing, the Hearing can occur within 24 hours of the date of the Consultation. At the Hearing, both parties will have a chance to present their cases to the Referee. The Referee will listen to the parties’ evidence, the evidence of witnesses (if any) and make a decision on the merits of the case and in accordance with the law.

An order by the Referee is binding on the parties and enforceable as an order of the Magistrate’s Court. For more information on Orders of Tribunals, please see the State Courts brochure “Orders of Tribunals”.

Last updated on: 10/7/2017 11:35 AM
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