The Straits Times
Published on Jan 14, 2013

More needy Singaporeans, permanent residents to qualify for legal aid


The Law Ministry wants to change the law so that more needy Singaporeans and permanent residents can receive legal aid.

Now, applicants must pass both a means test and a merit test to receive legal aid.

The means test looks at annual disposable income - that is, income after deductibles and reliefs - and disposable capital. To pass, these amounts cannot exceed $10,000.

The Legal Aid and Advice (Amendment) Bill, introduced in Parliament on Monday, will increase the deductibles and reliefs so that more people can qualify.