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Digital audio recording and transcription services in the courts

Parties may apply to obtain a copy of the audio recording or transcript of court proceedings.

Refer to the following to find out the process to file a request for such services in the respective courts.

The Court Audio Services System (CAS) is the system used to facilitate the digital audio recording of court hearings and the preparation of transcripts in the Supreme Court. Epiq Singapore Pte. Ltd is the service provider for the CAS audio recording and transcription services at the Supreme Court.

CAS is available by default for all criminal trials and trials in civil actions commenced by Writ of Summons (Writ). Parties involved in the following hearings may file a request for audio recording and transcription services to be made available:

  • Originating Summons (OS).
  • Company winding-up cases.
  • Bankruptcy matters.
  • Non-trial matters in an open court.
  • Appeals to a judge in chambers.
  • Special date and assessment of damages hearings before registrars.

In a hearing where an audio recording system approved by the registrar is used, the audio recording is the official record of the hearing(1).

For criminal matters, evidence recorded in writing or, if it is not recorded in writing, the transcript of the evidence recorded, must be in English and signed by the judge hearing the case; and forms part of the record(2).

Parties may obtain a copy of the audio recording or transcript of court proceedings, subject to the court’s approval and upon payment of the necessary fees. Refer to the following to find out the procedure to apply.

Applications for certified transcripts

If you are representing yourself in a criminal or civil case heard in the Supreme Court, you may file a request for certified transcripts via eLitigation at the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau at Supreme Court (level 1) at least 7 working days before your scheduled hearing.

For civil cases, you will also need to provide all of the following to Epiq Singapore Pte. Ltd (wherever applicable) at least 2 working days before the hearing starts:

  • Authorities or bundles of authorities.
  • Documentary exhibits or bundles of documents.
  • Written submissions.
  • Lists of the names of witnesses.
  • Any documents tendered at the hearing.
Note
If you file your request after the hearing has started, or after the hearing has concluded, the documents must be supplied together with the request form.

For such requests, the delivery timeline will be 7 working days after the date of the request.

The court will not certify any unofficial transcript as a certified transcript of the official record of hearing. The court will also not entertain any request to decide on any of the following:

  • The accuracy of an unofficial transcript.
  • (If more than one unofficial transcript is produced or obtained) Which unofficial transcript to adopt.
    • If there are issues or disputes relating to unofficial transcripts, parties are to obtain a certified transcript of the official record of hearing from the court. Normal fees and charges will apply in respect of such a certified transcript.

Transcription rates

Refer to the following to find out the transcription rates you will have to pay.

Item or service

Rates

24-hour turnaround

$0.068 per word

3 working days turnaround

$0.049 per word

5 working days turnaround

$0.043 per word

7 working days turnaround

$0.040 per word

14 working days turnaround

$0.036 per word

Tip
For transcript requests with a 24-hour turnaround, the transcripts will be ready for collection after 5.00pm the working day after the date of the request.

Application for audio recordings

If you are representing yourself in a criminal or civil case heard in the Supreme Court, you can file a request via eLitigation at the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau at Supreme Court (level 1).

Note
Audio recordings are only available for trial proceedings. They are not available for appeals or any other non-trial proceedings.

For trials where only the parties involved in the proceedings are allowed to attend (in private), special reasons and permission of the judge are required before audio recordings are released.

Audio recording rates

Refer to the following to find out the audio recording rates.

Item or service

Rates

Normal delivery request

$35 per audio recording

Expedited request (For collection by 9.00pm on the same day for hearings that end before 5.00pm)

$100 per audio recording

The requesting parties will receive a secure link to access the audio recordings directly via a website managed by the vendor.

Collection schedule

Refer to the following to find out the collection timing for audio recordings.

 

Hearing time

Collection time

Normal collection

Hearing that ends by 2.00pm

5.00pm on the same day

Normal collection

Hearing that ends after 2.00pm

10.00am on the next working day

Premium collection

Hearing that ends by 5.00pm

9.00pm on the same day

If you need assistance, you may contact Epiq Singapore Pte. Ltd or the Court Reporting Section at 6332 1055 or 6332 4143 for enquiries about the Supreme Court's audio recording and transcription services.

All courtrooms in the State Courts are equipped with a digital audio recording transcription system (DART) to digitally record criminal and civil court proceedings.

The audio recordings are transcribed by the State Courts’ designated transcription service provider, Epiq Singapore Pte Ltd when required. These transcripts are deemed the official records of hearings.

The procedure and fees to apply for certified transcripts in the State Courts will depend on the case type. The State Courts does not provide copies of audio recordings for court proceedings.

For criminal cases

If you are a party in a criminal case heard in the State Courts and your case is registered on the Integrated Case Management System (ICMS), you can file a request for certified transcripts via ICMS.

If your case is not registered on ICMS, you will have to complete and submit a hard copy of the Application Form for Court Records (Form 30) through one of the following ways:

Estimated fees

Refer to the following to find out the estimated fees you will have to pay depending on the type of document you wish to obtain.

If you wish to obtain...

You will have to pay a total of...

A Registrar’s Certificate (RC) and charges(3)
  • $35 ($20 is the fixed fee for the RC and a minimum of $15 is the charge payable with the RC).
    • You will have to pay the total amount when the application is made.
    • Any additional amount (based on the number of pages for charges) is payable before the documents can be collected.
All other documents (including a copy of any judgment, sentence, order, deposition or other part of the record of any criminal proceedings)(4)
  • $5 for each type of document requested in the application and $0.50 per page thereof, subject to a minimum of $15 per document.
    • You will have to pay a minimum of $15 per document when the application is made.
    • Any additional amount (based on the number of pages provided) is payable before the documents can be collected.

A payment advice chit will be sent to you via email. If you do not have an email account, you will be informed via phone to report to the Service Hub, Level 2 State Courts during the operating hours to collect the payment advice chit and make payment at the payment kiosk.

You will have to pay the applicable fee online or in person before your application is processed. You can make payment through the following means:

If you are...

You can make payment by....

Located in Singapore

  • Cash.
  • NETS.
  • PayNow.
  • Cheque by a local law firm made payable to Registrar, State Courts.
    • You will have to indicate the case reference number at the back of the cheque.

Located overseas

A bank draft in Singapore currency made payable to Registrar, State Courts.

After payment is made

All applications are subject to the approval of the court and you will be informed via email of the outcome of your application. If you do not have an email account, you will be informed via phone.

Once your request has been approved, you must collect the certified transcripts within 21 working days from the Service Hub, Level 2 State Courts at the following times:

Monday to Friday: 9.00 am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 5.00pm

Any documents not collected from the State Courts within the stipulated period will be destroyed and you will have to submit a fresh request if you still require the documents.

If you have made the application through ICMS, you can download the documents from ICMS.

For civil cases

If you are a party in a civil case heard in the State Courts and your court proceedings are audio recorded, you may apply directly to the State Courts’ designated transcription service provider, Epiq Singapore Pte Ltd for a copy of the transcripts.

If a certified copy of the transcript is needed, you will need to separately apply to the court to certify the transcript.

If your court proceedings are not audio recorded and you are representing yourself, you will need to file a request form via eLitigation at the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau. Your application for certified transcripts will be subjected to the approval of the court.

Audio recordings are transcribed by the court's designated transcription service provider, Amdatex Las Piñas Services Inc when required. These transcripts are deemed the official records of hearings.

The procedure and fees to apply for certified transcripts in the Family Justice Courts (FJC) will depend on the case type. The FJC does not provide copies of audio recordings for court proceedings.

In general, the transcription of the audio recordings requires a turnaround time of at least 14 working days upon approval of your request for transcript by the appointed Judicial Officer.

For trials in action

All trials in action in the FJC are audio recorded using the digital audio recording transcription system (DART) for physical hearings or using Zoom for virtual hearings.

If you are representing yourself in a trial conducted in the Family Justice Courts (FJC), depending on the type of case, you may file a request for certified transcripts via eLitigation at the LawNet & CrimsonLogic Service Bureau, via the Integrated Family Application Management System (iFAMS) or via the Integrated Case Management System (ICMS) for Youth Court cases. Self-represented parties for Youth Court cases may also complete and submit a hard copy of the Application For Records of Court Proceedings (Form 211) in person at the FJC Youth Courts during operating hours.

All other hearings

If no audio recording is made, the notes of the hearing will be taken down by the judge, judicial officer or court officer. In these cases, the transcript of the notes of the hearing will be considered the official record of the hearing.

Private real time court reporting services

Parties who need transcription services in real-time, daily or by 10.00am the next working day should approach the following approved service providers:

If you are a vendor interested in providing private real-time court reporting services, you may email court_reporting@judiciary.gov.sg for more information.

Resources

Refer to:

 


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