Written Answer by Minister for Law, Mr K Shanmugam, to Parliamentary Question on Rationale for Imposing Cost to File a Claim Before Community Disputes Resolution Tribunals
06 Oct 2020 Posted in Parliamentary speeches and responses
Mr Gerald Giam Yean Song (Member of Parliament for Aljunied GRC)
To ask the Minister for Law (a) what is the rationale for imposing a cost of $150 to file a claim before the Community Disputes Resolution Tribunals (CDRT); and (b) whether this fee can be waived for lower income residents in order to make the CDRT more accessible to residents with intractable neighbour disputes.
In 2015, the Community Disputes Resolution Tribunals (“CDRT”) were established as specialised courts to deal with neighbour disputes with the intention that they be faster, less costly and less adversarial than traditional civil proceedings, so as to better preserve relationships between the neighbours.
Proceedings are therefore governed by simplified procedures and are judge-led. Lawyers are not involved, unless parties agree to legal representation and the CDRT judge permits it.
Consistent with this, the costs of proceedings before the CDRT are generally less than normal civil proceedings.
The filing fee was pegged at a level commensurate with the nature of the disputes, and lower than the filing fees for civil proceedings before the District Court and Magistrate’s Court.
A successful CDRT applicant may claim the cost of filing his application from the respondent as a disbursement for his case. Additionally, an applicant who is able to show that he cannot afford to pay a filing fee may be granted a waiver, upon application. These are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Last updated on 06 Oct 2020