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Alternatives for Working in the Legal Field in Singapore

If you are not eligible for admission to the Singapore Bar , you may wish to consider alternatives for working in the legal field in Singapore, including:


(A) Practising Foreign Law as a Foreign Lawyer


If you are registered to practise law in an overseas jurisdiction, you can register with the Legal Services Regulatory Authority as a foreign lawyer under Part IXA of the Legal Profession Act to practise foreign law in Singapore. You will not need to take any courses or examinations. 


(B) Practising in Permitted Areas of Singapore Law as a Foreign Practitioner 


Foreign-qualified lawyers who pass the Foreign Practitioner Examinations (FPE) can register with the Legal Services Regulatory Authority as a foreign practitioner under Section 36B of the Legal Profession Act to practise in permitted areas of Singapore law.  Please refer to the Singapore Institute of Legal Education (SILE)’s website for more details on the FPE.


(C) Working as In-House Counsel


You may be able to work as in-house counsel in an organisation in Singapore. For more information, please refer to the Singapore Corporate Counsel Association’s website.


(D) Obtaining an Approved Law Degree from a Scheduled University in Singapore


You can apply for a place on an approved law degree programme at the National University of Singapore (NUS), the Singapore Management University (SMU) or the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS). 


If you are currently employed, the SUSS School of Law’s curriculum is credit-based and modular, with classes conducted in the evenings to cater to working students.  


(E) Exemption by the Minister for Law


If you are not eligible for admission to the Singapore Bar, you may wish to try submitting an application to the Minister for Law for an exemption.


Please note that each application for an exemption will be considered on its individual merits and may be granted subject to conditions. The onus is on the applicant to make a strong case for the exemption sought.


Last updated on 17 Jul 2018