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Revised Editions of Legislation

The 2020 Revised Edition of Acts

The Law Revision Commission and the AGC have completed a universal revision of Singapore’s Acts of Parliament. The 2020 Revised Edition of Acts came into force on 31 December 2021.

The 2020 Revised Edition of Acts comprises 510 Acts which have been revised and updated to 1 December 2021. It is the sole and only proper Statute Book of Singapore with respect to the Acts contained in it. All Acts are available both on Singapore Statutes Online and in hard copy.

The revisions to the Acts include several new and improved features:

Simplified and modernised language

Plain English is used as far as possible, including gender-neutral language where appropriate, e.g. “chairperson” is used instead of “chairman”, “him or her” is used instead of “him”.

Archaic words and long expressions are replaced with simpler alternatives without any change in meaning, e.g. “despite” instead of “notwithstanding”, “to avoid doubt” instead of “for the avoidance of doubt”.

These updates to existing legislation complement AGC’s plain English drafting techniques for new legislation.

Streamlined and more informative citations 

The short title of a revised Act now includes the year the Act was enacted, e.g. “Penal Code 1871”. Chapter numbers are no longer required. This allows users to distinguish Acts that have been repealed and re-enacted from earlier Acts with the same title, and will give some historical context to the Act.

This means that it will generally be sufficient to cite the short title of a revised Act without its chapter number. Citing the chapter number (together with the year of the Revised Edition) will only be necessary when citing a specific historical version of an Act.

Comprehensive legislative history

A legislative history continues to be provided for every revised Act but with additional information about the progress of the Bill through Parliament, amendments made to the Act over time, any consolidations during revision exercises, any changes to the short title, among other details. Diagrams are provided for Acts with complex legislative histories. Information on predecessor Acts which were repealed is also included.

The 2020 Revised Edition marks the completion of a project that started more than five years ago. The genesis of it was the PLUS project that started in 2013. AGC’s Legislation Division has since embarked on various initiatives to transform how it writes new legislation to ensure that the law will be effective, navigable and readable to all its readers, and not just judges and lawyers.

Revising the existing stock of Acts to simplify the language is in line with that spirit of keeping Singapore laws accessible.

Please refer to the materials below for additional information relating to the amendments made in the 2020 Revised Edition of Acts.

AGC's media statement of 20 December 2021

• Infographics on the 2020 Revised Edition of Acts (Click on the infographics to expand and read.)
UR Infographic 1 UR Infographic 2

Foreword, Preface and the alphabetical and chronological lists of Acts

Guide to the 2020 Revised Edition of Acts

List of Standard Revision Changes for the 2020 Revised Edition of Acts 

List of Acts renumbered at section level

Revised editions of the Acts are published online at Singapore Statutes Online.

To purchase hard copies of the Revised Acts, please visit the Government Printer’s website here. Alternatively, you may purchase the hard copies from the Government Printer’s Resource Centre during its business hours at:

Toppan Leefung Pte Ltd
Resource Centre
1 Kim Seng Promenade
#18-01/06 Great World City East Tower
Singapore 237994

Tel: 6826 9691
Fax: 6820 3341
Email: legalpub@toppanleefung.com 

Background on the Law Revision Commission and revised edition of Legislation
Singapore’s Acts and subsidiary legislation are revised from time to time by the Law Revision Commission (LRC) under the Revised Edition of the Laws Act 1983. The LRC is headed by the Attorney-General and comprises 5 other Law Revision Commissioners.

AGC’s Legislation Division assists the LRC in preparing the revised editions for approval and publication. The LRC has authority to make clerical, editorial and other changes of a non-substantive nature to legislation. The legislative history is also updated with each revision.

Every revised Act is transmitted to the President, and comes into operation on a date specified by the President by way of an order published in the Gazette. From the date it comes into operation, the revised edition of Acts and subsidiary legislation is authoritative and is, in all courts and for all purposes, the sole and only proper law in respect of those Acts and subsidiary legislation.