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Legal Research And Writing

1. Explian and elaborate on the various courts that make up the Supreme Court and the State Court.

2. What are the primary and secondry source of Law?

Sample Answer

1 Issue:
The main issue in this case is to explain various courts under Supreme Court and State Court at Singapore.

The governance of Singapore could be divided into three parts such as executive, legislative and judiciary. The establishment of courts are the subject matter falls under judiciary. The apex court of Singapore is Supreme Court and according to Article 93 of the Constitution, all the supreme powers relating to the judicial subjects have imposed on the Supreme Court. Further, it has been stated under the Judiciary sector, the head of the judiciary is Honourable Chief Justice. There are a number of courts consists in Supreme Court of Singapore such as Court of Appeal and High Courts (Harding, 2016). According to the structural criteria of Supreme Court, a court of appeal should deal with the civil and criminal cases and decide law points pending for the decision of the High Court. Further, all the appeal cases related to the public interest will be adjudged by the Court of Appeal. On the other hand, the power and scope of the High Court is quite wide and apart from the civil and criminal matters, certain other arenas like Probate and estate acquisitions are also dealt by the High Court. Further, the Constitution of Singapore empowers the high Court to pronounce death penalties in case of rare criminal offence (Jani & Hassan, 2015). However, the party who is aggrieved by the decision of High Court may apply to Supreme Court and Supreme Court will decide the case after examine all the scope and application of the legal provisions or precedents. According to section 3 of the Supreme Court of Judicature Act, 2007, it is the apex court of record. It has been stated under Article 94 (1) of the Constitution, Supreme Court could confer power on the High Court and Court of Appeal. According to section 2 of the Legal Profession Act, the members of the bench should hold a scholastic approach and should have ample of knowledge on law. The selected members should have to be a part of the Legal Service as stated in Article 96 of Constitution (Chan, 2017). Further, it has been stated in section 29 (4) of SCJA, Chief Justice should be the president of the Court of Appeal and he is liable to hear certain specific cases according to section 29(3) of the Act. The administrative works of the Supreme Court will be governed by its registry and the President on the recommendation of Chief Justice appoints the officers of the department.

In Singapore, the two-tier court system could be found. The first part is the Supreme Court and the second part is the subordinate courts or the state court (Tan, 2015). The state courts are divided into two parts such as the District Court and the Magistrate Court. According to a report submitted in the 2014 states that 95% judicial cases are tried by the subordinate courts and it includes Coroner’s court and small claim tribunal. Family Court has been established in 2014 to deal with the family disputes.

According to the rules mentioned for the Supreme Court in Singapore, it can be stated that the constitution of Singapore has given ample of judiciary power to this court. Further, it can be stated that the powers and authorities of the selected members of the court has made this institution able enough to deal with cases with impartial mentality. The Court of Appeal and the High Court has exercised all its duties within the judicial caricature and the wide judicial knowledge of the jurists has provided ultimate judgment to the people in Singapore. The title of “court of record” is belonged to the Supreme Court and it has been observed that this court has maintained all the legal norms with great calibre (Chan, 2017). The Court of Appeal in Singapore is dealing with both the civil and criminal appeal and the affected parties to the case can make appeal before the High Court. According to Article 94 of the Constitution, the Supreme Court has imposed certain special power to the High Court. Further, it has been observed that there are so many cases where the High Court has exercised their judicial minds to come into effective consequences. The member selection process of the court is also shows the high judicial obligation. According to the provision of SCJA, the presidents of the court of appeal is liable to hear certain important cases and it has able to resolve many cases skilfully. Further, the two-tier judicial system of Singapore has made serious judicial impression on the central and state sectors. Apart from the Supreme Court, there are certain state courts that deal with the local and district level cases with clarity. The transparent and wide judicial system of Singapore has made the court system a temple of justice. There are many cases where the court has created judicial impression precisely. According to the judicial system of Singapore, if a party has been affected by the order of the lower court, he can make an appeal either before the court of appeal or before the High Court. The judicial capacity and knowledge of the courts can be observed through various judgment made by these courts. In Woo Hon Wai and others v Ramachandran Jayakumar and others [2017] SGHC 17, certain housing development program has been initiated and an appeal has been made by the plaintiff and it has been stated that the defendant has violated the norm of the civil construction rule. A collective sale agree4ment has been made in between the parties and it has been observed that certain terms and conditions have also included under the agreement. However, the defendant has failed to maintain the provisions of section 84A (1) of the Land Titles (Strata) Act and appeal has been made by the appellant. After considering various judicial aspects and terms, the court of appeal has accepted the claims of the appellant and showed the impartial mentality of the court.

It can therefore, be stated that the Supreme Court and other State courts of Singapore has made effective impression on the Singapore judicial system.

2 Issue:
The main issue in this part is to determine what primary and secondary source of law in Singapore are.

According to the judicial interpretation rule, the source of law can be divided into two parts; such as the primary source and the secondary source. The statement that has been derived from the government authority could be renamed as primary source of law. The instances of the primary law can be court decision, statutes, legislative bills and other legal documents (Jayasuriya, 2017). On the other hand, the secondary source of law is indicating the background resources of law. This resources help to explain and interpret the legal provisions. The instances of this law are legal reviews, encyclopaedias and legal restatements. These sources are important to interpret and analyze the legal provisions and help the judges to come out with effective decisions. Considering the rule of judicial interpretation, the legal sources of Singapore can be divided into three parts such as legislation, judicial precedents and customs. The term legislation can be statutes and subsidiary legislations (Tushnet, 2018). It is a part of the primary source of law and further, it can be observed that the judicial system of Singapore is quite depended on various statutes published by the parliament on different occasions. Further, it can be observed that in many cases, the courts are depended on the repealed statutes. Among many important statutes, Constitution of the Republic of Singapore is inevitable. However, there are certain rules prescribed for the acceptance and application of the statutes. According to the rules, the terms and provisions of the statutes should be clear and there should not be any inconsistencies. According to the Singaporean law, the common law jurisdiction is based on the principle of equity and important judgments are included in the primary legislation. According to the various provisions of the important legislative provisions such as the Contract Law, Equity and Trust law and Property law are derived its originality from the important decisions made by prominent jurists (Quek et al., 2016). This has made judicial precedents an important source of law and this is an example of the secondary source of law. Further, customs are also helpful for the judicial interpretation and they form part of the secondary sources of law. However, according to the norms of custom, they are not applied on the cases forcefully; but if it has been included, the provisions of the customs become mandatory.

All the legislative and State councils are following the legal writing of the statutes and it can be observed that the provisions of the statutes are before it is repealed. Most of the statutes of Singapore are clear and transparent and it follows all the rules regarding the statute rule properly. Certain services are provided by the chambers of the Attorney General in Singapore to make the provisions of the statutes relevant. The statements published in the Government Gazette are also forms a part of the primary source of law and it helps to make certain passage for the government bills. Certain matters relating to the monetary and tax impositions get help from these gazettes. The rules of the various statutes are inserted in certain Acts of Singapore. According to section 17(1) of the Environmental Public Health Act, matters related to the public health and place are inserted according to the Application of English Law Act. Further provisions of the Maintenance of Religious Harmony Act and section 27A (1) of the Miscellaneous Offences (Public Order and Nuisance) Act have also reflected the norms of the above named statute. According to section 2(1) Interpretation Act 1999, delegated legislations are also a source of law in Singapore. The term delegated legislation includes the order of the council, proclamation by the crown and rules of the courts. Penalty provision of regulation 16 of the Environmental Public Health Regulation is an example of the delegated legislation.

According to the rules mentioned above, it can be stated that the secondary rules are also an important source of the law and therefore the judicial precedents have taken an important role in the judicial system of Singapore. The portions of the legal subjects like the Contract Act, Trust Law and Property Law are invariably attached to the judicial precedents (Li, 2014). Further, the provisions of the judicial precedents made by the judges of Court of Appeal are applied mandatorily on the High Court in Singapore. Additionally, the principle of stare decisis is applicable on the legal principles, which determines the outcome of the case. There are various cases where the judicial precedents have been applied. In Chng Suan Tze v Ministers for Home Affairs (1988) 2 S.L.R. the Court of Appeal has applied the judicial review and amend the provision of the Internal Security Act to come to a conclusion. Various customs are there in Singapore and therefore the principle of custom is an effective part of the Singaporean Judicial system. Acts as Administration of Muslim Law Act has been recognised under the customs and certain provisions of the Act has been included here. There are many agreements present in the continents of Singapore that serves as important primary source of law. Provisions of the Free Trade Agreement and Singapore Treaty on the Law of Trademarks are certain examples of such primary source of law. Apart from all the mentioned legal sources, the administrative regulation, court decisions and looseleaf services are playing important role in the judicial services of Singapore. According to the views of different court cases and process, it can be stated that Singapore has maintained all its provisions particularly and succeed to establish a wide and liberal judicial structure in the world.

To conclude, it can be stated that Singaporean judicial system has able to maintain the rules of primary and secondary source of law.

Bradley, A., Ewing, K., & Knight, C. (2018). Constitutional and administrative law. Pearson Higher Ed.

Chan, S. K. (2017). Basic structure and supremacy of the Singapore constitution. SAcLJ, 29, 619.

Chan, S. K. (2017). Basic structure and supremacy of the Singapore constitution. SAcLJ, 29, 619.

Chng Suan Tze v Ministers for Home Affairs (1988) 2 S.L.R.

Harding, A. J. (2016). 2 Does the hbasic structure doctrinei apply in Singaporeis Constitution?. Constitutional Interpretation in Singapore: Theory and Practice.

Jani, N., & Hassan, R. (2015). Dispute Resolution in Singapore: Challenges and Opportunities for Islamic Finance. Journal of Islamic Economics, Banking and Finance, 113(3158), 1-20.

Jayasuriya, K. (2017). The rule of law and capitalism in East Asia 1. In Singapore (pp. 113-134). Routledge.

Li, R. Y. M. (2014). Law, economics and finance of the real estate market: A perspective of Hong Kong and Singapore. Springer Science & Business Media.

Quek, A., Wu, D., Xu, W., & Guo, L. (2016). Feasibility of Singapore IBA waste for land reclamation. Environmental Geotechnics, 4(1), 56-64.

Tan, K. Y. (2015). The Constitution of Singapore: A Contextual Analysis. Bloomsbury Publishing.

Tushnet, M. (2018). Constitutional Interpretation in Singapore: Theory and Practice.

Woo Hon Wai and others v Ramachandran Jayakumar and others [2017] SGHC 17


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