Getting a divorce can be a major life change. It is often stressful and complicated. Divorce almost always involves dealing with a number of related issues: custody of children, maintenance and division of assets. And each issue can have emotional, legal and economic considerations.
Before proceeding you may wish to consult a counselor to explore the impact this move will have on you and your family in order that you are emotionally prepared for the process or to explore other alternatives.
Brochures from the Subordinate Courts of Singapore
If you decide to proceed, you will need to see a lawyer for advice and assistance. The lawyer will advise you whether you can file for divorce and, if so, will prepare the necessary legal documents on your behalf.
If you would like to consult a lawyer about divorce proceedings or other matters, consider attending AWARE’s twice monthly legal clinic. Likewise if you would like to work through the emotional issues surrounding your marriage, consider speaking to a helpliner or meeting with one of our counselors.
Moving On: Divorce and ParentingMoving On is a guide that looks at how to deal with being a single parent in the event of divorce or death. It includes advice on how to talk to your child, money matters, finding a lawyer, work and childcare.
Frequently Asked Questions about Divorce
- What is a divorce?
- Who can apply for a divorce in Singapore?
- What are the legal requirements for a divorce?
- How do I apply for a divorce?
- What if I can’t find my spouse?
- Can I oppose a Writ for Divorce filed by my spouse?
- Is there a way for my spouse and I to come to an agreement so that we can avoid a contested divorce?
- Do I need a lawyer to get divorced?
- When can I remarry?
Custody, Maintenance and Division of Assets
Divorce often involves dealing with issues such as the custody of children, maintenance and division of assets.
The following resources provide information to address these issues:
- Subcourts Maintenance Summonses Fact Sheet
- Law Society – Custody and Maintenance
- Subcourts FAQ Matrimonial Property
Expats & PRs
AWARE is the only organisation in Singapore that offers practical advice for expat women in need of it. In cases of divorce, AWARE counsellors stress the importance of networking, finding out your rights as soon as possible, recording details of finances and assets, and always being prepared for the next step. – Expat Living
Legal Aid Bureau
If you cannot afford a lawyer, you may apply to the government-run Legal Aid Bureau for assistance (you have to pass a Means Test to qualify).
The Legal Aid Bureau is situated at:
45 Maxwell Road #08-12
The URA Centre, East Wing
Tel: (65) 1800 325 1424 (toll-free)
Fax: (65) 63251402
The following statistics come from Population Trends 2010 by Stastitics Singapore.
- The median marriage duration of divorcing couples was 10.1 years in 2009, slightly more than the 9.8 years in 2008.
- Divorces that occurred within 5-9 years of marriage constituted 32 per cent of divorces in 2009.
- There were 7,386 marrital dissolutions in 2009, an increase from 7,216 in 2008.
- Divorce rates for married residents have generally been increasing over the past 30 years