Enforcement Of Foreign Judgments

Always revitalising and evolving


About the project

The Singapore Academy of Law’s Law Reform Committee, at the request of the Honourable the Chief Justice Yong Pung How, set up a subcommittee in August 2004 to review the law on statutory enforcement of Singapore subordinate court judgments overseas and, if necessary or desirable, make recommendations for reform.

Among the Committee’s key recommendations were the following:

  • The statutory scheme for enforcement should be extended to cover subordinate court judgments as there is no reason in policy or principle to exclude such judgments from the benefits of enforcement by registration.
  • The scheme should be extended to non-money judgments, including pre-judgment relief.
  • The requirement of service of notice of registration should be tightened to ensure that no person will be deprived of property save in accordance with due process. Failure to serve a notice of registration in accordance with the prescribed rule should be a ground to set aside registration of a foreign judgment.
  • There should be only one scheme of registration of foreign judgments instead of the present dual scheme of registration applicable to Commonwealth judgments and foreign judgments respectively.

Project status: Completed

  • The report was published in June 2005.
  • The Ministry of Law conducted a public consultation (archived here) between 15 April and 24 May 2019 on a proposed Reciprocal Enforcement of Foreign Judgments (Amendment) Bill (archived here). The draft bill seeks to implement a number of the Committee’s recommendations, including the following:
    • Providing for the enforcement of judicial settlements, non-money judgments, interlocutory orders, and judgments from foreign ‘inferior’ or lower courts.
    • Allowing for the registration of a foreign judgment to be set aside if the notice of registration was not served on the judgment debtor or if the registration was defective.
    • Dealing with foreign judgments originating from both Commonwealth and non-Commonwealth jurisdictions under a single statutory regime.
  • The recommendations were implemented by Parliament in the Reciprocal Enforcement of Commonwealth Judgments (Repeal) Act 2019 (No 24 of 2019) and the Reciprocal Enforcement of Foreign Judgments (Amendment) Act 2019 (No 25 of 2019) which were passed on 2 September 2019. The latter Act came into force on 3 October 2019.

Areas of law

 Civil procedure


Click on the image above to view the report

Last updated 14 November 2019


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