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Legal Services Division

The Legal Services Division (LSD) provides legal advice and services to MOM’s divisions and departments, prosecutes offenders for contravention of Acts administered by MOM and adjudicates work injury claims and infringement cases.

Mission

Administering justice through fair prosecution and adjudication, and providing effective legal solutions to advance MOM’s mission.

Trusted partner at the forefront of employment laws.

Vision

Fair prosecution | Just adjudication | Effective legal solutions

Structure

LSD is led by a Divisional Director, who oversees the 3 branches: Prosecution, Civil and Adjudication.

Each branch is headed by a Director or Deputy Director, supported by Senior Assistant Directors and other officers.

Functions

The Prosecution Branch is responsible for prosecuting offenders of the legislation within the purview of the Ministry. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (Cap. 91A)
  • Employment Act (Cap. 91)
  • Employment Agencies Act (Cap. 92)
  • Foreign Employee Dormitories Act 2015 (Act No. 3 of 2015)
  • Workplace Safety and Health Act (Cap. 354A)
  • Work Injury Compensation Act (Cap. 354)
  • Immigration Act (Cap. 133)
  • Child Development and Co-savings Act (Cap. 38A)

For information on Court Processes, please refer to the State Courts’ website.

The Civil Branch is responsible for:

  • Providing legal advice to the Ministry on its policies and operations.
  • Drafting and vetting contracts, tender documents, memoranda of understanding and licence agreements.
  • Handling civil litigation involving the Ministry or its officers.
  • Assisting in reviewing, drafting and vetting the legislation administered by the Ministry.

The Adjudication Branch is responsible adjudicating and for hearing cases under the Work Injury Compensation Act (WICA), the Employment of Foreign Manpower Act (EFMA) and the Employment Act (EA).

WICA provides injured employees with an alternative to common law (i.e. commencing a suit in the Singapore courts) to settle compensation claims. The Assistant Commissioners for Labour may, after a claim has been made, conduct a hearing and make such order he thinks just.

To lodge a claim, it is not necessary for claimants to engage a lawyer. However, claimants are able to seek legal representation should they wish to do so. Claimants who are unable to afford legal representation may wish to seek assistance from the Legal Aid Bureau.

Find out more about making a claim under WICA.

The Administrative Financial Penalty (AFP) regime under the EFMA allows MOM’s Deputy and Assistant Commissioners for Foreign Manpower to impose financial penalties on employers who have committed prescribed infringements as defined by the EFMA. These are wrongs which are more regulatory in nature, such as failure to pay an S-Pass holder by GIRO. Just like under WICA, the Commissioners have the power to hold hearings into cases before making a decision.

There is a similar Administrative Penalty Regime under the EA, under which an authorised officer of the Ministry may require employers to pay administrative penalties for committing civil contraventions such as failure to make and keep employee records, give employees their key employment terms and pay slips. Similar to the AFP regime under the EFMA, directions may also be issued to the employer to bring the civil contravention to an end or take certain action to remedy any effects of the civil contravention.