It was on 4th April 1956 when the Legal Aid and Advice Bill was introduced in the Legislative Assembly with the objective of making legal aid and advice easily available to the persons of "limited means". At first Singapore Legal Aid Bureau was set up as a department under the Ministry of Labor and Welfare and it functioned from the former Ministry of Labor Building on Havelock Road. Then, in 1964 it came under the Ministry of Social Affairs and since 1984 the Legal Aid Bureau is a department of the Ministry of Law till today.
We have a long history of the change of premises of the Legal Aid Bureau with the change in its character of departments.
It shifted from Havelock Road to Empress Place to Pearl's Hill and then to Colombo Court and now it is in the URA center at Maxwell Road.The vision of the Legal Aid Bureau can be summed up as "Blazing Trails In The Compassionate Practice of Law" as the members love to express.
And it operates with the mission of providing quality legal aid and suggestions to the non affluent section of the society. The Legal Aid Bureau follows certain core values like "Trust and Integrity", "Compassion and Passion" and "Teamwork and Innovation".
Legal Aid Scheme covers the civil matters including divorce, adoptions,custody of children, tenancy disputes, monetary and motor and industrial accident claims, estate matters and so on. Singapore Legal Aid Bureau does not handle criminal matters.
The bureau lends out its helping hand only to poor Singapore citizens who will satisfy the criterion of financial Means Test and to the permanent residents of Singapore.
The Legal Aid Bureau provides information on legal topics like wills, divorce, road accidents, deed of separation and custody and access and so on. The bureau also publishes brochures like "A guide to the Legal Aid Scheme" to provide necessary legal information to the common people.
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