The Employment Claims Act (Act 21 of 2016) (the "Employment Claims Act") sets up the new Employment Claims Tribunals ("ECT"), which provide employees and employers with an expeditious and affordable avenue to resolve salary-related disputes and wrongful dismissal disputes. The Employment Claims Act also aims to facilitate the resolution of salary-related employment disputes for more employees.

The ECT came into operation on 1 April 2017.

1.    How do I file an ECT claim?
2.    Where can I file an ECT claim?
3.    Can I file a salary-related claim and a wrongful dismissal claim together?​
​4.What documents do I bring in order to file a claim at the ECT?
5.    I have salary-related claims from various months which total sum exceeds the claims limit. Can I submit separate mediation requests for each claim separately for each month?
6.    What are the fees payable for a claim to be filed at the ECT?
7.    How do I serve the documents that are used in ECT proceedings?
8.   Can I serve a document outside Singapore?
9. Can an employer object to a claim filed by an employee?
10. Can employees make a joint claim against their employer?
11. Can the respondent make a counterclaim against the claimant?
12. What should I do if I do not speak or understand English? Is there any interpreter to assist me?
13.  Where can I obtain legal advice for my claim?


 

1. How do I file an ECT claim?

Before a claim can be filed at the ECT, parties must first submit their request for mediation at the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management ("TADM"), whose role is to provide advisory and compulsory mediation services. Only unresolved disputes may be referred to the ECT.

The process to file an ECT claim is as follows: How do i file an ECT claim
ECT claims may be filed online using the Community Justice and Tribunals System (CJTS) at http://www.statecourts.gov.sg/CJTS/.

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2. Where can I file an ECT claim?

You can file an employment claim online using the Community Justice and Tribunals System (CJTS) available at http://www.statecourts.gov.sg/CJTS/.

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3. Can I file a salary-related claim and wrongful dismissal claim together?

No, you cannot file these claims together.

Salary-related claims, which includes both statutory and contractual salary-related disputes, must be filed separately from claims involving wrongful dismissal disputes.

You can file different salary-related disputes together in a single claim, but a claim for wrongful dismissal dispute must be filed separately. For example, if a claimant was not paid overtime pay and for sick leave, and feels she has been wrongfully dismissed, she cannot put all these heads of claims into a single claim. Her claim for overtime pay and sick leave can be filed together, but her wrongful dismissal dispute has to be filed as a separate claim.

Separate fees apply for each claim (S$30 for a claim of under S$10,000 or S$60 for a claim of over S$10,000). Separate and independent claim limits of $20,000 or $30,000* also apply to salary-related claims and wrongful dismissal claims.

*For employees who go through the Tripartite Mediation Framework or mediation assisted by their unions recognised under the Industrial Relations Act.

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4. What documents do I need to file a claim at the ECT?

When filing a claim online in the Community Justice and Tribunals System (CJTS), you should upload the following:

  1. Personal identification documents (photocopy)
    • For Singapore citizens or Permanent Residents - NRIC
    • For foreign citizens - Passport and Employment Pass
    • For non-individuals, e.g., companies, etc. - Latest company profile and identification documents of the company's authorised representative, including a letter of authorisation
  2. Claim Referral Certificate from the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM)
  3. Other supporting documents for the claim, for example:
    • Employment contract
    • Pay slip(s)
    • Written record of "Key Employment Terms"
    • Time-sheet(s)
    • Bank statement(s)

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5. I have salary-related claims from various months which total sum exceeds the claims limit. Can I submit separate mediation requests for each claim separately for each month?

You are not allowed to split your claims and pursue multiple ECT proceedings if the only reason for doing so is to bring the amount claimed within the claim limit.

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6. What are the fees payable for a claim to be filed at the ECT?

The fees for filing a claim at the ECT are as follows:

 

Claim amount

ECT

Claimant's filing fee

ECT

Respondent's filing fee

$10,000* and below$30$30

More than $10,000*

$60$60


 Depending on the complexity of your case, you may also incur other charges. Some of these common fees are:

S/No

Description

Fees

​1​Filing an application to register a settlement agreement or extend the validity of the settlement agreement​S$10
​2​Filing an application to set aside the registration of a settlement agreement​S$30
​3​Filing an application to set aside a jugdment or order of the Tribunal or the Registrar​S$30


For a full list of the fees involved, please refer to the First Schedule to the Employment Claims Rules 2017. The First Schedule can be viewed here.

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7. How do I serve the documents that are used in ECT proceedings?

You may serve the documents using the following modes:

Hand
  • (For individuals) Delivering the documents to the other party at his last known place of residence
  • (For non-individuals, e.g., companies) Delivering the documents to any director, manager or officer of the other party at its registered office, or principal place of business
Registered post
  • (For individuals) Sending the documents by registered post to the other party's last known place of residence or business in an envelope addressed to the person
  • (For non-individuals, e.g., companies) Sending the documents by registered post to the other party's registered office or principal place of business
Others
  • By any means (including by facsimile transmission or electronic mail) as directed by the ECT

After the documents are served, you are required to file a declaration of service (DOS) online in the Community Justice and Tribunals System (CJTS) before the date of the first case management conference. To file the DOS, log into CJTS and click on “Online Applications”, then “ECT” and choose the e-service “Declaration of Service”.

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8. Can I serve a document outside Singapore?

A claim or summons cannot be served on any person outside Singapore.

If a party you wish to claim against is residing overseas (for individuals), or whose registered office or place of business is overseas (for non-individuals), you would have to seek your own legal advice on your available course of action.  
However, once a claim is filed and served in Singapore, all subsequent documents relating to the ECT proceedings may be served on persons outside Singapore (except for summonses).

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9. Can an employer object to a claim filed by an employee?

No, an employer cannot prevent a claim from being filed by its employee. All employees covered under the Employment Claims Act are entitled to file a salary-related claim with the ECT.

If an employer does not agree to a claim made against it, the employer may file a response online using the Community Justice and Tribunals System (CJTS). The employer should log into CJTS using the one-time reference number found on the Notice of Case Management Conference which the employer should have received from the employee together with the claim. The employer may then continue to present its case during the Case Management Conference and the Hearing at the ECT.

The employer may then continue to present its case during the Case Management Conference and the Hearing at the ECT.

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10. Can employees make a joint claim against their employer?

No, they may not. Employees are required to submit their mediation request / their claims separately. The claims limit will be applicable to each individual's claims.
Although the claims cannot be submitted or filed collectively, the claims may be mediated at TADM or heard at the ECT together, if, depending on the facts of the case, it is convenient to do so.

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11. Can the respondent make a counterclaim against the claimant?

Yes, the respondent can. If the respondent has a counterclaim, he/she should submit a mediation request for the counterclaim at TADM.

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12. What should I do if I do not speak or understand English? Is there any interpreter to assist me?

If you need the services of a Court interpreter for the Chinese (including dialects), Malay and Tamil languages, you must inform the Employment Claims Registry when you are filing the claim, or before the CMC or other proceedings during which the interpreter is required.
For any other languages, you would need to engage an interpreter to be present at the CMC or other proceedings. If you require assistance, you may approach the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM).

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13. Where can I obtain legal advice for my claim?

As the State Courts must remain neutral and independent in adjudicating matters that are filed in the Courts, the State Courts staff are not in the position to provide advice for any matter that is or may come within our court system. If you require legal advice, you may find this list of organisations and their websites useful:

Ministry of Manpower (MOM)                                 www.mom.gov.sg/employment-practices For enquiries about information not found on the website, please call 6438 5122.
Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management (TADM) www.tadm.sg
  • For Singaporeans and PRs:

    Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability

    80 Jurong East Street 21, #03-03, Singapore 609607

     
  • For work pass holders:

    MOM Services Centre

    1500 Bendemeer Road, Hall A Level 3, Singapore 339946

     

Migrant Workers' Centre (MWC)

 

www.mwc.org.sg 
  • MWC Serangoon:

    579, Serangoon Road, Singapore 218193

     
  • MWC Geylang:
    82, Geylang Lorong 23, Atrix, #01-06, Singapore 388409

     

    Helpline: (+65) 6536 2692

    Email: feedback@mwc.org.sg

     
National Trades Union Congress (NTUC)

www.ntuc.org.sg

 

www.ntuc.org.sg/wps/portal/up2/home/industrialrelations/unionsandu

 

For contact details of the various NTUC centres, please refer to https://www.ntuc.org.sg/wps/portal/up2/home/contactus.
Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF) www.snef.org.sg

Head Office:
60 Paya Lebar Road, #13-45, Paya Lebar Square (Lobby 2), Singapore 409051

 

Telephone: (+65) 6290 7633

Email: webmaster@snef.org.sg

 

Community Justice Centre (CJC) www.cjc.org.sg

Address:
1 Havelock Square, Level 1 State Courts building, Singapore 059724

 

Telephone: (+65) 6557 4100

Email: help@cjc.org.sg

 

The Law Society of Singapore's Pro Bono Services Office

 

probono.lawsociety.org.sg

General Office

Address:
50 Market Street, #10-04, Golden Shoe Car Park, Singapore 048940

 

Telephone: (+65) 6536 0650

Email: probonoservices@lawsoc.org.sg

 

(Office in State Courts is only for Criminal Legal Aid Scheme matters)

 

Commissioners for Oaths & Notaries Public www.conp.sg/co-np-directory-listing

Address:
1 Supreme Court Lane, Level 5M, Singapore 178879

 

Telephone: (+65) 6332 4388

Email: enquiries@sal.org.sg

 

Singapore Statutes Online https://sso.agc.gov.sg 

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Last updated on: 15/4/2019 9:07 AM

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