Reed Smith Client Alerts

This article was originally published in Practical Law Arbitration. Reproduced with permission. This client alert is co-written by Reed Smith Pte Ltd and Resource Law LLC who together form the Reed Smith Resource Law Alliance in Singapore. Reed Smith LLP is licensed to operate as a foreign law practice in Singapore under the name and style, Reed Smith Pte Ltd (hereafter collectively, “Reed Smith”). Where advice on Singapore law is required, we will refer the matter to and work with Reed Smith’s Formal Law Alliance partner in Singapore, Resource Law LLC, where necessary.

The third party funding arrangements for international arbitration, introduced in 2017, have been extended to further categories of proceedings, including domestic arbitration proceedings, certain Singapore International Commercial Court proceedings and related mediation proceedings.

* Timothy Cooke is a Partner in Reed Smith's Singapore office. Germaine Chia is an Associate in Reed Smith's Singapore office. Jemma A. Collins is an Associate in Reed Smith's Singapore office. Khyati Raniwala is an Associate in Reed Smith's Singapore office.

On 28 June 2021, the third-party funding (TPF) arrangements for international arbitration were extended to further categories of proceedings.

Singapore first introduced its TPF framework for international arbitration in January 2017 by passing certain amendments to the Civil Law Act (Cap. 43) (Act) and other laws. For the first time in Singapore, qualified commercial funders were allowed to provide TPF to prescribed classes of proceedings, namely international arbitration proceedings, court or mediation proceedings connected with international arbitration and certain applications in relation to international arbitration proceedings.

On 21 June 2021, the Singapore Ministry of Law announced that those arrangements would be extended to further categories of proceedings. With effect from 28 June 2021, that framework now covers domestic arbitration proceedings, certain Singapore International Commercial Court (SICC) proceedings (while they remain in SICC) and related mediation proceedings. Under the first two categories, court proceedings arising from or connected to domestic arbitration proceedings, and appeal proceedings from decisions in SICC proceedings, are also covered.

Singapore’s TPF regime is currently governed by the Act and subsidiary legislation. These comprise the Civil Law (Third-Party Funding) Regulations, which provide for qualification requirements of funders and the Legal Profession Act and Legal Profession (Professional Conduct) Rules, which set out rules applicable to law firms and legal practitioners in Singapore. These rules continue to apply in the revised framework.