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Is legal aid free?

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1. Is legal aid free?

Legal aid is not free. Most people will be required to pay a contribution towards the costs of work done in the case. 

The contribution payable is assessed having regard to your financial means, the nature of your case, the amount of work done and the amount of money recovered for you.

2. How much contribution may I be required to pay?

The total contribution usually does not exceed S$1,500, but it may be more in some cases. You will usually be asked to pay a first instalment before any work is started on your case and a second instalment after your case has been completed. We will usually start representing you in Court only after you have paid your contribution.

3. What should I do if I am unable to pay the contribution?

If you are unable to pay in full, you must inform us and ask to pay in instalments.


4. What other charges may I be required to pay?

You are also required to pay for the preparation of various documents that are essential for your case, for example, medical reports and opinions from experts. You are also required to pay any fees incurred in the service of Court documents on the opposing party.

5. How do I pay my contribution or other charges to LAB?

You can make payment online at or you can come down to LAB to pay either by cash or by NETS.

For on-going payments, GIRO deductions can be arranged. Please fill up this form and send it to us.

6. Will I have to pay the costs of the opposing party if I lose the case?

If legal aid is granted to you, you will usually not be ordered by the Court to pay costs if you lose the case. However, there may be situations in which the Court may order you to pay costs. For example, when the Court decides that you have obtained legal aid through fraud or misrepresentation or that you have acted improperly in the conduct of your Court proceedings, it may order you to pay costs to the opposing party.

7. Will I be paid any costs if I win the case?

If you win a case, the Court may order costs to be paid by the opposing party to the Director of Legal Aid.

Last updated on 22 Jun 2017