The Protection from Harassment Act (Cap 256A, 2015 Rev Ed) ("POHA") protects all persons from harassment, stalking, cyber-bullying, and other anti-social and undesirable behaviours. An applicant under the POHA can obtain both criminal sanctions and civil remedies against the perpetrator.
This overview provides a brief summary of the important steps in filing a POHA claim in Court. However, this is not a substitute for legal advice.
Before filing a claim
You may wish to seek the services of a lawyer to represent you in Court. Although this is not compulsory, your lawyer will be in the best position to assess your case and advise you accordingly.
If you choose to proceed without a lawyer, you may approach the Central Registry at Level 2 for assistance with the filing process. Do note that our staff cannot provide you with any legal advice.
You should bring the following:
- Your NRIC or other forms of personal identification;
- Evidence of the harassing act(s), such as print-outs of emails, blogs, websites, photographs; and
- Police report or medical report (if any).
Choosing your remedies
Before commencing any claim under the POHA, you must decide what type of remedies you are seeking.
If you wish to have the alleged perpetrator prosecuted for criminal behaviour, you may wish to make a police report or pursue a private prosecution by filing a Magistrate's Complaint.
Alternatively, if you wish to obtain any of the following civil remedies against the alleged perpetrator, you will need to commence a civil action:
- Protection Orders
- Orders relating to false statements of fact
- Monetary compensation
Filing your claim
If you are filing an application for orders relating to false statements of fact (including interim orders relating to false statements of fact), you will need to manually print and submit the relevant forms together with all supporting documentation at the Central Registry (Level 2, State Courts).
If you are seeking a Protection Order (PO) (including an Expedited Protection Order (EPO)), you should file an Originating Summons together with a supporting affidavit at the CrimsonLogic Service Bureau. If applying for an EPO, you must attend a Pre-Trial Conference (PTC) before serving the documents on the intended respondent. If applying for a PO, you must serve the Originating Summons together with the supporting affidavit on the intended respondent before attending the PTC.
If you are seeking monetary compensation, please refer to this page for details on filing a civil suit.