Singapore: courts and law firms subject to COVID-19 circuit breaker measures


COVID-19 circuit breaker measures implemented to minimise public interactions

In an effort to curb the escalation of locally-transmitted COVID-19 infections, the Singapore government announced "circuit-breaker" measures on 3 April 2020. From 7 April 2020 to 4 May 2020 (both dates inclusive) (the "Relevant Period"), schools and "non-essential" workplace premises will be closed so as to minimise movements and interactions in public and private places. In line with the CVID-19 circuit-breaker measures, the Singapore courts will hear only "essential" and "urgent" matters during the Relevant Period.

Closure of "non-essential" workplace premises

As part of the enhanced "circuit-breaker" measures, all "non-essential" businesses are required to stop operations at their physical workplaces, though work may still be performed by telecommuting from home.

Essential services include food and beverage outlets, food suppliers, healthcare, social services, financial services, cleaning services, water, energy and environment-related services, transport services, telecommunications services, construction, banking and finance and other selected services required for daily living. A comprehensive list of essential services can be accessed at

List of legal services deemed to be "essential"

As such, save for law practices providing legal services in "essential" areas, law firms are also required to close their office premises during the Relevant Period. The following is the exclusive list of legal services deemed to be "essential".   read more

Source: Jonathan Choo, Shaun Lee, YiHui Teo | Bird & Bird

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