Legal Help from a Government Divorce Lawyer

While in some cases, both the husband and wife in Singapore are not happy with their marriage and wish to end it, only one spouse, often, is not happy with the marriage. For instance, the husband may be shouting at the wife or abusing her in other ways, due to which the wife may want to get a divorce. However, hiring a divorce lawyer can be expensive, so if the wife does not have sufficient savings or funds to pay the lawyer she may be advised to get a government lawyer. Hence, the married woman will want to learn what is government divorce lawyer. She wants to find out whether she is eligible for the services or not.

Free legal aid

Like most other countries, the Singapore government will offer free legal assistance to some citizens or permanent residents if they do not have sufficient funds to pay the lawyer. However, to be eligible for the free legal help or government lawyer, the person applying for assistance should meet the means criteria. The government expects people who have sufficient income and savings to pay for their lawyer. To get a government lawyer, the person applying for legal aid, should prove that he or she does not have disposable income and assets above a certain amount which the government specifies.


If a Singapore citizen is having income, he can deduct $6000 annually towards his own expenses. Also, if he has a dependent, a parent for example, he can also deduct $6000 for each dependent annually from the income. If the citizen is living in a rented house, he can also deduct a maximum of $20,000 from the disposable income towards rental expenses. The provident fund (PF) contribution of the citizen is also deducted from the income. After all these deductions, if the disposable income remaining is above $10000, the citizen is not eligible for a government lawyer, he has to spend his own money for a lawyer.

Assets / capital

Additionally the Singapore resident should also not have enough disposable capital. This includes the clothes, furniture, savings and other assets which the person has. Only citizens whose disposable capital and disposable income is valued at less than $10000 are eligible for free legal aid from government agencies. The person applying for a government lawyer will have to provide the documents required to show that he or she does not have sufficient income and also the savings/assets to hire a competent lawyer himself or herself for the divorce, and he requires legal assistance from the government.

Other criteria

In addition to meeting the financial requirement, the person applying for divorce should also be able to provide a valid reason why the government should spend taxpayer money to provide legal assistance. The government may reject some applications, especially if the divorce is due to personal reasons like an extra-marital affair. In case, it is very difficult to get government assistance for the divorce, either spouse should try to reduce the divorce expenses to the extent possible. For example, persuading the other spouse to agree to the divorce, to make it uncontested can greatly reduce the legal cost for getting a divorce.



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