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Enforcement of maintenance orders using video-conferencing facilities

8 March 2017

Question

Mr Leon Perera
Non-Constituency Member of Parliament


To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development (a) in the past three years, how many applications for the enforcement of maintenance orders have been made using video-conferencing facilities at the Singapore Council of Women's Organisations and the Tampines Family Service Centre; and (b) how does this compare to the overall number of applications.

Answer

From 2014 to 2016, 23 to 26 applications for the enforcement of maintenance orders were filed annually through video-conferencing at the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations’ Maintenance Support Central (SCWO-MSC), Tampines Family Service Centre (FSC), and at HELP FSC1, one of the Divorce Support Specialist Agencies (see table 1). 

The cases comprised around 1% of the total number of enforcement applications annually from 2014 to 2016, which was around 2,600 to 3,000. 

Table 1: Number of Applications for Enforcement of Maintenance at SCWO’S Marriage Support Central, Tampines Family Service Centre, and HELP Family Service Centre, out of Total Enforcement Applications.

 Year  2014 2015 2016
(A)        Number of Enforcement Applications (Sec 71+) Filed through Video-Conferencing at SCWO-MSC [1]  23  23  24
(B)        Number of Enforcement Applications (Sec 71) Filed through Video-Conferencing at Tampines FSC [2] 2^ NA
NA
(C)        Number of Enforcement Applications (Sec 71) Filed through Video-Conferencing at HELP FSC [3] NA NA 2
(D)        Total Number of Enforcement Applications (Sec 71) Filed through Video-Conferencing (D = A + B + C)  25  23  26
       
Overall Number of Applications for Enforcement of Maintenance (Sec 71) [4](% filed through video-conferencing)  2,927 (0.85%) 2,753 (0.84%) 2,651 (0.98%)

 + Refers to Section 71 of the Women’s Charter.
^ Figure only from January 2014 to June 2014, as Tampines FSC has ceased provision of the video-conferencing service from July 2014 onwards. 
* Figure only from September 2016 to December 2016, from when HELP FSC first offered the service. 

Sources: 
[1] Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations
[2] Tampines Family Service Centre
[3] HELP Family Service Centre
[4] Family Justice Courts

 
The Ministry has been working closely with the Family Justice Courts (FJC) to simplify and increase accessibility of the enforcement process. Apart from video-conferencing and assistance with applications, SCWO-MSC and HELP FSC provide a more comprehensive suite of services to parties seeking enforcement of maintenance, including credit bureau reporting and counselling. The Ministry will continue to work with the FJC and the service centres to raise awareness of the services provided at the centres.   

 


1Tampines FSC has ceased provision of this service since July 2014; we have also included the number of applications from HELP FSC from when they started offering the service in September 2016.

 

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Published On Wed, Mar 8, 2017
Last Reviewed On Mon, Apr 17, 2017

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