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Singapore and Its Legal System - Essay Example

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Some of their beliefs have influenced the way the country handles issues to do with discipline and the respect for nature, and has differentiated Singapore’s laws and rules from those of other countries like Australia. People say that Singapore has fine cities because of their fines, but it is really more of common sense and good etiquette. Tan (2007), highlights that “the most powerful judicial institutions in Singapore is made up of Supreme and subordinate courts”. The president does appointment of judges in Singapore, and the prime minister recommends other judges after consultations with the chief justice. Specialist judges were appointed to the bench in the year 2006, drawn from legal practitioners and academia with an aim of supplementing expertise to the subordinate courts (Tan & Chan, 2007). However, since 1992, capital offences trials have been heard and addressed by a single judge after amendment of the constitution. Capital punishment is still legally in force in Singapore, and offenders are executed according to the laws of the land. The United Nations terms the executions in Singapore to have the highest rates in the world, which are executed by hanging at down on Friday. The practice of capital punishment in Singapore was borrowed from Britain since Singapore was a British colony, and this is different from what other countries in Europe, America and Australia do(Tan & Chan, 2007). The legal system in Singapore includes the common law and higher courts decisions are binding to other less status courts. The judiciary system is made up of “the court of appeal, the high court, the constitutional tribunal, the subordinate courts, the district and magistrates’ courts, the small claims tribunals and the family courts” (Tan & Chan, 2007). “The court of appeal is the highest court,” and is mandated to hear civil and criminal appeals, which come from the high court and other subordinate courts (SamSim, 2007). The high court in Singapore comprises of judges who have security of tenure and contracted judicial commissioners. The high court in Singapore has powers to hear civil and criminal cases and their appeals. In addition, the high court has specialist roles of specializing in arbitration cases. The constitutional tribunal was founded in the Supreme Court with jurisdiction of hearing cases and issues that the president refers on the effect of provisions of the constitution (SamSim, 2007). All other courts and small claims tribunals in the country make up the subordinate courts. In addition, there are criminal and commercial civil courts that were established under the subordinate courts and they deal with business transactions and complex cases (SamSim, 2007). The district and magistrates’ courts both have equal powers over jurisdictions such as claims on debts, damages, and monies recovery actions. Their difference is on the monetary limits jurisdiction of each, and the powers on criminal sentences. The small claims tribunals are courts that have jurisdiction on small claims cases with $ 20,000 limits, and they offer faster and cheaper administration of justice (Tan & Chan, 2007). Finally, there are family courts which have jurisdiction on divorce, maintenance child and property custody and adoption cases. There are various laws and rules observed in Singapore in order to avoid legal actions and penalties. However, some of these laws and rules are ...Show more


Republic of Singapore is a country located south of the Malaysian peninsula and is composed of sixty-three islands, which form the state. It was started as a British colony in the nineteenth century and was established as a trading colony. The trading hub image has propelled the country to great development as one of the most successful countries with the busiest ports globally…
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