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Spotlight on SCWO Legal Clinics

Mdm. Tan has been contemplating filing for divorce from her husband for the past few years. Their relationship has grown increasingly strained with her husband leaving their marital home for weeks at a time. This has taken a severe toll on her mental and physical health. She fears that the conflict at home will have a negative influence on her two young children as well. Her role as a stay-at-home mother has made her hesitant to seek legal aid as she lacks the personal finances to hire a lawyer. However, she felt that it is important to know her rights as a wife and mother so she can know how best to help herself and her family.

In June 2019, Mdm. Tan contacted the Singapore Council of Women Organizations (SCWO) to see how we could assist her. Working with our social service executives, she was informed of our legal clinics and how it would be beneficial to her situation. Held twice a month, clients like Mdm. Tan can register for either our Civil or Syariah law legal clinics and receive free consultation from our volunteer lawyers. During these individual sessions, the lawyers are able to guide our clients through any legal family matter and inform them of their respective rights. As for Mdm. Tan, after attending her legal clinic session, she felt more confident in her decision-making. The lawyer advised her not only of her rights but how the divorce process works and the legal aid options available for her despite her financial situation. She also shared that the patience and kindness shown by the lawyer and the SCWO staff made her feel more comfortable in sharing details of her marriage. She now knows what actions she needs to take and understands the legal landscape better.

SCWO Legal Clinics are catered to clients like Mdm. Tan with issues regarding Family Law. We started in 2011 and to date, we’ve assisted over 1350 women through this service. We work closely with the Singapore Association with Women Lawyers (SAWL) as well as the Law Society of Singapore’s Muslim Law Practice Committee (MLPC) to provide this service for you.

Legal clinics take place on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month from 6:00pm – 8:30pm. For Muslim clients, Syariah law legal clinics are held on the 3rd Monday of each month. Our legal clinics are free and each client receives 30 mins of legal counselling. While the lawyers are unable to represent clients outside of these sessions, we do assess each case and refer them to pro-bono legal aid services if eligible.

For more information or to register for this service, kindly contact us at 65710185 or email us at mscentral@scwo.org.sg.

Do note that our legal clinics are strictly by appointment only and eligibility criteria applies.

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