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At your case management conference

Note

This page describes the simplified civil process for cases begun by a Writ of Summons (Writ) and heard in the Magistrate's Court or the District Court where all parties consent to the application of the simplified civil process.

Refer to Start a civil claim by Writ of Summons or Respond to a civil claim made by a Writ of Summons instead if either of the following applies to your case:

  • Civil cases begun by a Writ and heard in the General Division of the High Court.
  • Civil cases begun by a Writ and heard in the District Court where parties do not agree to the application of the simplified civil process.

You should bring the following for your case management conference (CMC):

  • Your identity card (NRIC), work permit, passport or other official identification documents that have your photo and personal particulars (photo ID).
  • Writing material to take notes (such as pens and notepad).

If you are represented by a lawyer, it is necessary for your lawyer to attend the CMC.

Tip

If you have lost your NRIC, work permit or passport and do not have any other photo ID, you can bring documents that support your reasons for not having a photo ID.

For example, you should bring along a police report as evidence of the loss of your NRIC. Alternatively, you can also show correspondences with the relevant agencies such as the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) as evidence of your attempts at obtaining a replacement NRIC or passport.

Proceedings at a CMC

At the CMC, the court may manage the case by:

  • Encouraging the parties to co-operate in the conduct of the proceedings.
  • Assisting parties to identify and narrow down issues at an early stage.
  • Dealing with any interlocutory applications.
    • This may include applications for amendment of pleadings, security for costs or the selection of a single joint expert to give expert evidence on behalf of both parties to the case.
    • The court may not require parties to file affidavits for such applications and may deal with them summarily.
  • Considering with the parties whether the likely benefits of any step proposed to be taken by a party would justify the costs that will be incurred.
  • Encouraging the parties to settle the whole or part of the case.
  • Giving directions as the court thinks fit in order to ensure that the case progresses quickly.
  • Fixing timelines to manage and control the progress of the case.
  • Taking actions as the court thinks appropriate in the circumstances.

Outcomes of a CMC

Refer to the following to find out the different outcomes which may arise from the CMC.

A dispute is considered resolved when the parties have reached an agreement. The terms of the agreement will be recorded before the judge as a court order.

After the settlement is recorded as a court order, a party may proceed with enforcement proceedings against another party if they do not fulfil their obligations under the final judgment.

If your case cannot be settled at the CMC, the court will give directions to the parties for either a simplified trial or a full trial.

These directions may include:

  • Inspection.
    • This involves the examination of the original documents in the list of documents and making copies (where necessary) to prepare the case for trial.
  • Exchange of Affidavits of Evidence-in-Chief (AEIC).
    • This involves the preparation and exchange of each party's and their witnesses' statements under oath (legally known as affidavits) which they are relying on, and any objections to such statements.
    • Any party or witness may not be allowed to be called to give evidence at trial if their AEIC has not been exchanged.
  • Number of witnesses.
    • This involves the number of witnesses a party may require and the number of days a trial may require.
  • Matters relating to evidence.

In general, cases that follow the simplified civil process will be fixed for a simplified trial. The court may convert a simplified trial to a full trial only if there are exceptional reasons to do so and after hearing the parties' respective positions.

Set down for trial

Once all the pre-trial matters to support a party’s case have been dealt with, the case must be set down for trial. This is a necessary step to inform the court that the parties are ready to schedule dates for the trial.

In general, the court will direct the party who filed the claim (the plaintiff) to file the Notice for Setting Down Action for Trial. When the case has been set down, the parties may be directed to attend a Pre-Trial Conference.

 

What you will need

If you are the plaintiff, you will need to prepare the following before you file:

How to file

You may choose to file the documents personally or through a lawyer. If you are represented by a lawyer, the documents will be filed by your lawyer.

If you are representing yourself, you must file the documents through eLitigation at the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau.

You must follow the Rules of Court and the State Courts Practice Directions to prepare your documents before heading down personally to do the filing.

After you file, you must serve a copy of the Notice for Setting Down an Action for Trial on all parties within 24 hours from the time that the Notice is filed.

Estimated fees

Refer to the following to find out the possible fees for filing the documents. You may also refer to Appendix B of the Rules of Court for the full list of court fees.

Magistrate's Court cases

In addition to the fees listed in the table, there are also other fees payable to the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau.

Item or service

Fees

Setting down a cause or matter for hearing or judgment

$150

Filing of the set down bundle

$10

District Court cases

In addition to the fees listed in the table, there are also other fees payable to the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau.

Item or service

Fees

Setting down a cause or matter for hearing or judgment

$200

Filing of the set down bundle

$10

Pre-trial conferences

A PTC will be conducted after the plaintiff files the Notice for Setting Down an Action for Trial. The court may consider the following at a PTC:

  • Seek an update on the status of an action.
  • Monitor the progress of the case.
  • Give necessary directions in order for the just, quick and economical resolution of the case.
  • Consider the possibility of settlement of all or any of the issues in the case or proceedings.
    • Parties who reach a settlement at a PTC may record the settlement in court.

Once all pre-trial matters and applications are dealt with, the court will schedule a date for the trial. In general, this will be within 28 days from the date of the PTC.

If there is a settlement on the issue of liability only, parties may enter a consent interlocutory judgement to assess the amount of money (also known as the quantum of damages) to be awarded to the winning party.

Depending on the nature of your case, the court may then arrange for an assessment of damages hearing.

Note

In general, instead of an assessment of damages hearing, an assessment for damages court dispute resolution conference (ADCDR) is arranged for all personal injury cases and non-injury motor accident matters where the quantum claimed by the plaintiff is below $250,000.

Medical negligence cases are excluded from the list of personal injury cases referred to an ADCDR.

Need help?

The information here is for general guidance as the courts do not provide legal advice. If you need further help, you may want to get independent legal advice.

Find out more

Resources

Refer to the Guide to Common Civil Justice Processes (PDF, 1476 KB).
Refer to:

Go to Step-by-step guide

Step-by-step guide

2021/10/13

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