21. If any person seeking or receiving legal aid or advice in furnishing any information in his application knowingly makes any false statement or false representation, he shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction in a Magistrate’s Court to a fine not exceeding $5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.
—(1) The like privileges and rights as those which arise from the relationship of client and solicitor acting in his professional employment shall arise from the following relationships:
the relationship between an applicant for legal aid and the Director and the solicitor (if any) to whom the application is referred;
the relationship between an aided person and the Director and the solicitor (if any) assigned to act for him in any proceedings to which a legal aid certificate relates;
the relationship between a person seeking legal advice and the Director and the solicitor (if any) who gives the advice.
(2) Notwithstanding anything in subsection (1), the privileges therein referred to shall not arise in relation to any information tendered to the Director concerning the property or income of the applicant for a legal aid certificate.
(3) Unless this Act or any regulations made thereunder otherwise provide, the rights conferred by this Act on a person receiving legal aid or advice, as the case may be, shall not affect the rights or liabilities of other parties to the proceedings or the principles on which the discretion of any court or tribunal is normally exercised.
—(1) The Minister may make regulations not inconsistent with this Act prescribing all matters (other than the rules regulating the practice and procedure of any court referred to in section 19) which by this Act are required or permitted to be prescribed or which are necessary or convenient to be prescribed for carrying out or giving effect to this Act.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the regulations may —
regulate all matters relating to fees, charges and costs in relation to proceedings to which an aided person is a party;
remit or provide for the remission of any fees or charges in any such proceedings;
make provision as to the cases in which a person may be refused legal aid or advice by reason of his conduct when seeking or receiving legal aid or advice (whether in the same or related matter or in a different matter);
make provision for the recovery of sums due in respect of legal aid and for making effective the charge created by this Act on property recovered or preserved for a person receiving legal aid, including provision —
for the enforcement of any order or agreement for costs made in favour of a person who has received legal aid; and
for making a solicitor’s right to payment wholly or partly dependent on his performance of any duties imposed on him by regulations made for the purposes of this paragraph;
make any provision necessary to meet the special circumstances where —
a person seeks legal aid in a matter of special urgency;
a person begins to receive legal aid after having consulted a solicitor in the ordinary way with respect to the same matter, or ceases to receive legal aid before the matter in question is finally settled; and
there is any relevant change of circumstances while a person is receiving legal aid; and
prescribe any forms to be used under this Act.
(3) The regulations may apply generally to all legal matters, whether relating to proceedings in court or otherwise, or may apply to any specified class of matters or proceedings or to all matters or proceedings other than matters or proceedings of a specified class.
(3A) Any fund established under this Act to meet the costs, fees, disbursements or expenses in connection with legal aid or advice under this Act may be applied for the purposes of legal aid or advice under the International Child Abduction Act 2010.
[27/2010 wef 01/03/2011]
(4) The regulations may impose a penalty not exceeding $2,000 for any breach of the regulations.
(5) All regulations made under this Act shall be presented to Parliament as soon as possible after publication in the Gazette.
24. The Minister may, by notification in the Gazette, amend the Second Schedule.
—(1) All legal aid certificates granted, all orders and applications made, notices given and acts and things done under the repealed Legal Aid and Advice Act before 1st October 1995 shall have the same force and effect as if granted, made, given or done under this Act.
(2) A person who immediately before 1st October 1995 held office as the Director of Legal Aid, a Deputy Director of Legal Aid or an Assistant Director of Legal Aid shall continue to hold office as if he had been appointed under section 3 of this Act.