Latest updates

The Mareva Injunction Against a Foreign Party
  • Singapore
  • 11 October 2005

A decision of the Singapore High Court, upheld by the Court of Appeal, highlights the requirements involved in obtaining and maintaining a Mareva injunction in relation to a foreign party and a foreign arbitration award where no separate cause of action exists within the jurisdiction. The decision confirms the view that the right to obtain an interlocutory injunction is not a cause of action.

Developers Can Rely on Independent Contractor Defence
  • Singapore
  • 02 August 2005

In a landmark decision, the Singapore Court of Appeal recently held that a developer is entitled to rely on the independent contractor defence to defeat a claim in tort by a management corporation. The court ruled that a developer who has exercised proper care in appointing an independent contractor is not vicariously liable for that contractor's negligence.

High Court Rules on Company Liquidation Issue
  • Singapore
  • 17 May 2005

A recent Singapore High Court decision considers the duties of company directors, in particular the duty owed to creditors in the event of company insolvency. The court has adopted a flexible, pragmatic approach that recognizes the limits of adhering to strict tests and the realities of commercial business.

Court Rules on Derivative Actions of Minority Shareholders
  • Singapore
  • 14 December 2004

A recent case is the first reported judgment by the Singapore Court of Appeal concerning the scope of the statutory derivative action found in Section 216A of the Companies Act. It introduces a new barrier that could potentially defeat the successful invocation of a Section 216 action, even if the statutory conditions to obtain that remedy are satisfied.

Negligence and Pure Economic Loss
  • Singapore
  • 31 August 2004

A recent Supreme Court decision indicates that the courts have now adopted a more conservative definition of limits of tortious liability for negligently caused pure economic loss. This is a welcome clarification of the position regarding liability for negligently caused economic loss, the ambit of which was potentially very far-reaching under previous case law.

Appeals against Domestic Arbitration Awards
  • Singapore
  • 29 June 2004

The Singapore Court of Appeal has clarified that leave to appeal against a domestic arbitration award will only be granted if there is a question of law as opposed to a mere error of law, and the question of law is not a one-off point. Even if the question is one-off, leave may be granted if a strong prima facie case can been made out that the arbitrator was wrong.

Assessing and Taxing Liquidators' Remuneration
  • Singapore
  • 06 April 2004

The Singapore High Court has issued a decision that will be of substantial interest to insolvency practitioners and creditors of troubled companies. The judgment addresses an important aspect of insolvency practice: how the court assesses the reasonableness of a liquidator's remuneration or that of insolvency practitioners such as judicial managers.

Court Analyzes Amendments to Summary Judgment Procedure
  • Singapore
  • 03 February 2004

Previously, a plaintiff was at liberty to take out an application for summary judgment once the defendant had entered an appearance in the claim. As a result of recent amendments, however, a plaintiff can apply to enter summary judgment on its claim only once the defendant has filed its defence in the proceedings. The Court of Appeal has now considered the impact of these amendments.

Conditions Influencing Court Approval of Schemes of Arrangement
  • Singapore
  • 13 January 2004

Schemes of arrangement are frequently utilized in Singapore, especially in relation to the insolvency of a company. Under the provisions of the Companies Act, such schemes are subject to approval by the courts. In a recent decision the Court of Appeal had to revisit the factors under which court approval will be granted.

High Court Considers Law of Constructive Trusts
  • Singapore
  • 04 November 2003

The Singapore High Court recently addressed the issue of the imposition of a constructive trust over moneys paid under mistake of fact. In reaching its decision the court referred to the English case of Westdeutsche Bank v Islington LBC, which set out four fundamental requirements for the imposition of a constructive trust under these circumstances.

High Court Rules on Application for Setting Aside Arbitral Award
  • Singapore
  • 26 August 2003

A recent decision on the setting aside of an arbitral award is the first reported decision by Justice Prakash since she was appointed to preside over all arbitration-related matters brought before the High Court. The case also marks a first step towards the anonymous reporting of arbitration cases in Singapore.

Courts Consider Judicial Management of Insolvent Company
  • Singapore
  • 12 August 2003

A recent case saw a public company with ties to a well-known and financially troubled Indonesian conglomerate successfully retain control of its rehabilitation process and fend off a judicial management petition. This case was a challenge not only to the judicial management/insolvency regime in Singapore, but also to its corporate regulatory system as a whole.

Court Rules on Director's Statutory Duty of Care and Skill
  • Singapore
  • 05 August 2003

Following a recent High Court decision, the standard of care for criminal liability in directors appears to be the same as is imposed for civil liability - that is, an objective rather than a subjective test. A negligent director could therefore be liable both criminally and civilly, with little to distinguish the two, and without having to show gross negligence or loss to shareholders.

Stay of Proceedings for Forum Non Conveniens
  • Singapore
  • 29 July 2003

The Singapore courts recently issued two decisions on applications for a stay of proceedings on the grounds of forum non conveniens ('inconvenient forum'). The cases reinforce the legal principles related to stays for forum non conveniens.

High Court Rules on Verification Clauses in Banking Contracts
  • Singapore
  • 22 July 2003

In a recent case the opportunity arose to revisit the principles governing verification clauses in banker-customer contracts. The Singapore High Court addressed a number of issues relating to the extent to which customers are bound by clauses purporting to place them under a duty to check and verify statements of account.

Banking Secrecy: Recent Case Law
  • Singapore
  • 29 April 2003

Two recent cases have centred on the new Section 47 of the Singapore Banking Act, which was amended in June 2001. The new Section 47 lists a more extensive set of circumstances than was formerly allowed under which banks can disclose customer information, as well as the terms of such disclosure.

Third Specialist Commercial Court is Set Up
  • Singapore
  • 29 April 2003

Singapore's Admiralty and Intellectual Property Courts have been joined by a dedicated Arbitration Court. The establishment of these specialist courts is part of Singapore's continued policy of ensuring that judges with the requisite expertise and experience preside over cases involving highly specialized areas of law and commercial practice.

Overview (March 2003)
  • Singapore
  • 04 March 2003

Including: The Courts; Source of Laws; Jurisdiction, Registration and Enforcement; Timeframes; Changes to Court Procedures; Technology and the Courts.

Rules of Court are Revised
  • Singapore
  • 04 March 2003

Under new amendments to the Singapore Rules of Court, a plaintiff can now only apply for summary judgment once the defendant has served a defence and must do so within 14 days of the date on which the pleadings are deemed to have closed. Hearing fees in the subordinate courts and Supreme Court have also been increased.

Court Considers Payment of On-Demand Bond
  • Singapore
  • 27 March 2001

A recent Court of Appeal decision is the latest in a string of cases regarding when the courts will grant an injunction to restrain a party from calling on an 'on-demand' performance bond. The case looks at the factors that will be taken into consideration by the courts.