The in-house profession in Singapore is not regulated. It is not necessary to be admitted to the Bar (whether in Singapore or elsewhere) or to hold a practising certificate before you can be employed as in-house counsel. The position is the same for both local and foreign lawyers practising in-house in Singapore.
There is no restriction as to which laws an in-house counsel in Singapore can advise on. However, you should be familiar with the relevant regulations and processes before you provide your advice.
In-house counsel cannot
As the in-house profession is not regulated, there is no code of conduct that binds all in-house counsel as such. In-house counsel who are admitted to the Bar (whether in Singapore or elsewhere) are subject to the disciplinary regimes that are applicable to them by virtue of their having being admitted to the Bar in their respective jurisdictions.
The Singapore Corporate Counsel Association (SCCA) has a Code of Ethics which is binding on its members.
Yes, under the amendments to the Evidence Act (Chapter 97) which came into force on 1 August 2012, communications between an in-house counsel and his client, made for the purpose of his employment as in-house counsel, are now protected by legal privilege. However, this protection does not apply to:
The relevant statute is the Legal Profession Act (Chapter 161). Singapore statutes are available online at http://statutes.agc.gov.sg.
You should join the Singapore Corporate Counsel Association and you can Apply Online.- Link this to our membership link.
Our Peers Chapter has launched a mentorship programme earlier in 2016 and you can write to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Please visit the Peers Website.
SCCA offers useful continuing legal education resources and regular legal updates on our website to its members