PUBLIC GUARDIAN AND BOARD OF VISITORS
—(1) For the purposes of this Act, there shall be an officer known as the Public Guardian to be appointed by the Minister.
(2) If the Public Guardian is temporarily absent from Singapore or temporarily incapacitated by reason of illness or for any reason temporarily unable to perform his duties, the Minister may appoint a person to act in the place of the Public Guardian during any such period of absence from duty.
(3) The Public Guardian may in writing appoint any public officer as an authorised officer for the purposes of this Act.
(4) The Public Guardian may delegate to any authorised officer all or any of the functions or powers conferred on the Public Guardian by this Act except the powers conferred by this subsection.
(5) The Public Guardian may disclose information obtained in connection with the administration or execution of this Act to any authorised officer if this is necessary to enable such officer to perform his official duties under this Act.
(6) An authorised officer to whom information under subsection (5) is disclosed may only disclose or use such information to the extent necessary for performing his official duties under this Act, but not otherwise.
(7) Any person who contravenes subsection (6) shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $10,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.
(8) Subsections (5) and (6) are without prejudice to any right of disclosure under this Act or any other written law or rule of law.
(9) The Public Guardian shall be deemed to be a public servant for the purposes of the Penal Code (Cap. 224).
—(1) The Public Guardian has the following functions:
establishing and maintaining a register of lasting powers of attorney;
establishing and maintaining a register of orders appointing deputies;
supervising deputies appointed by the court;
directing a member of the Board of Visitors to visit —
a donee of a lasting power of attorney;
a deputy appointed by the court; or
the person granting the lasting power of attorney or for whom the deputy is appointed (“P”),
and to make a report to the Public Guardian on such matters as he may direct;
receiving security which the court requires a person to give for the discharge of his functions;
receiving reports from donees of lasting powers of attorney and deputies appointed by the court;
reporting to the court on such matters relating to proceedings under this Act as the court requires;
dealing with representations (including complaints) about the way in which a donee of a lasting power of attorney or a deputy appointed by the court is exercising his powers;
dealing with representations (including complaints) about any act purportedly carried out under section 10;
investigating any contravention or alleged contravention of any provision of this Act;
publishing, in any manner the Public Guardian thinks appropriate, any information he thinks appropriate about the discharge of his functions.
(2) The functions conferred by subsection (1)(c), (h) and (i) may be discharged in co-operation with any other person who has functions in relation to the care or treatment or the property and affairs of P.
(3) The Minister may, by regulations, make provision —
conferring on the Public Guardian other functions in connection with this Act;
in connection with the discharge by the Public Guardian of his functions.
(4) Regulations made under subsection (3)(b) may in particular make provision as to —
the giving of security by deputies appointed by the court and the enforcement and discharge of security so given;
the fees which may be charged by the Public Guardian;
the way in which, and funds from which, such fees are to be paid;
exemptions from and reductions in such fees;
remission of such fees in whole or in part;
the making of reports to the Public Guardian by deputies appointed by the court and others who are directed by the court to carry out any transaction for a person who lacks capacity.
[UK MCA 2005, s. 58]
—(1) The Public Guardian may, for the purpose of discharging his functions under this Act —
require any person who has any information which relates or is reasonably believed to relate to a person who lacks capacity to furnish the Public Guardian with such information;
require any person who has in his custody or under his control any document which relates or is reasonably believed to relate to a person who lacks capacity —
to furnish the Public Guardian with a copy of or an extract from the document; or
unless the document forms part of the records or other documents of a public authority or any court of competent jurisdiction, to furnish the Public Guardian with the document itself for his inspection; or
(2) The Public Guardian shall be entitled without payment to keep any copy or extract furnished under subsection (1).
(3) Where a document furnished for inspection under subsection (1)(b)(ii) is not held by any person entitled to the custody of the document, the Public Guardian may keep it or deliver it to any other person who may be entitled to the custody thereof.
(4) The Public Guardian shall at all times have full and free access to all buildings, places, books, papers and electronic computing or storage devices for the purpose of discharging his functions under this Act, and may, without payment, inspect, copy or make extracts from any such books, papers or electronic computing or storage devices.
(5) The Public Guardian may take possession of any book, paper or electronic computing or storage device referred to in subsection (4), and remove it from any building or place, where in his opinion —
the inspection, copying thereof or extraction therefrom cannot reasonably be performed without taking possession;
the book, paper or electronic computing or storage device may be interfered with or destroyed unless possession thereof is taken; or
the book, paper or electronic computing or storage device may be required as evidence in proceedings for an offence under this Act.
(6) Any person who fails to comply with any requirement specified under subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or to both and, in the case of a continuing offence, to a further fine not exceeding $50 for every day or part thereof during which the offence continues after conviction.
(7) If a person is charged with an offence for failing to comply with any requirement specified under subsection (1), it shall be a defence for him to prove that he had a reasonable excuse for failing to comply with such requirement.
(8) Any person who —
knowingly or recklessly furnishes to the Public Guardian or an authorised officer any information or document which is false or misleading in a material particular; or
wilfully alters, suppresses, conceals or destroys any document or any part of such document which he is or may be required to furnish under this Act,
shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $10,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both.
(9) Nothing in this section shall —
compel a professional legal adviser to disclose or produce a privileged communication, or a document or other material containing a privileged communication, made by or to him in that capacity; or
authorise the taking of any such document or other material which is in his possession.
(10) Subject to subsection (11), the Public Guardian may disclose to another public officer any information received by him under or for the purposes of this Act, where the disclosure is made for any purpose —
connected with the discharge of the functions of the Public Guardian; and
of enabling or assisting that other public officer to discharge any of his functions.
(11) Where any information disclosed to the Public Guardian under this Act is so disclosed subject to any express restriction on the disclosure of the information by the Public Guardian, the Public Guardian’s power of disclosure under subsection (10) shall, in relation to the information, be exercisable by him subject to any such restriction.
[Charities Act 2007 Ed., ss. 9, 10, 11(3), 11(4); Competition Act 2006 Ed., ss. 66(3), 75(3)]
—(1) There shall be a body to be known as the Public Guardian Board (referred to in this section as the Board).
(2) The Board’s duty is to scrutinise and review the way in which the Public Guardian discharges his functions and to make such recommendations to the Minister about that matter as it thinks appropriate.
(3) The Minister must, in discharging his functions under sections 30 and 31, give due consideration to recommendations made by the Board.
(4) The members of the Board are to be appointed by the Minister.
(5) The Board shall have —
at least one member who is a District Judge; and
at least 4 members who are persons appearing to the Minister to have appropriate knowledge or experience of the work of the Public Guardian.
(6) The Minister may, by regulations, make provision as to —
the appointment of members of the Board (and, in particular, the procedures to be followed in connection with appointments);
the selection of one of the members to be the chairman;
the term of office of the chairman and members;
their resignation, suspension or removal;
the procedure of the Board (including quorum);
the validation of proceedings in the event of a vacancy among the members or a defect in the appointment of a member.
(7) Subject to any regulation made under subsection (6)(c) or (d), a person is to hold and vacate office as a member of the Board in accordance with the terms of the instrument appointing him.
(8) The Minister may make such payments to or in respect of members of the Board by way of reimbursement of expenses, allowances and remuneration as he may determine.
(9) The Board shall make an annual report to the Minister about the discharge of its functions.
[UK MCA 2005, s. 59]
34. The Public Guardian shall make an annual report to the Minister about the discharge of his functions.
[UK MCA 2005, s. 60]
—(1) The Minister may, by notification in the Gazette, appoint persons to be members of a Board of Visitors.
(2) The Board of Visitors shall consist of —
Special Visitors; and
(3) A person is not qualified to be a Special Visitor unless he —
is a registered medical practitioner or appears to the Minister to have other suitable qualifications or training; and
appears to the Minister to have special knowledge of and experience in cases of impairment of or disturbance in the functioning of the mind or brain.
(4) A General Visitor need not have a medical qualification.
(5) A member of the Board of Visitors —
may be appointed for such term and subject to such conditions; and
may be paid such remuneration and allowances,
as the Minister may determine.
(6) For the purpose of carrying out his functions under this Act in relation to a person who lacks capacity (“P”), a member of the Board of Visitors may, at all reasonable times, examine and take copies of —
any health record; and
any record held by any person and compiled in connection with a social services function,
so far as the record relates to P.
(7) A member of the Board of Visitors may also for that purpose interview P in private.
[UK MCA 2005, s. 61]