Overview of Functions
The Legislation Division is Singapore’s central law drafting office and keeper of the Singapore Statute Book. The Division provides law drafting, legislative consultancy services to all ministries, Organs of State and statutory bodies, and law publication and database management for the public. The Division supports the Rule of Law by providing comprehensive free 24/7 online public access to Singapore legislation through the Singapore Statutes Online website (https://sso.agc.gov.sg).
Our mission is to contribute to constitutional government, sustainable development and an accessible statute book for all through the provision of high quality, impartial and efficient services in legislative drafting and the revision of legislation.
Our vision is to create an effective Statute Book for Singapore. This means producing legislation that is —
- Constitutional, and consistent with the Rule of Law
- Compatible with the general body of law
- Clear and concise (having minimal judicial dispute)
- Able to give effect to policies with no unintended consequences
- Precise so as to minimise avoidance of the law
- Able to ensure the test of time without the frequent need for amendments
- Easily understandable (in plain English)
- Accessible and readily available to all; and
- Cost-effective for compliance.
The work of the Legislation Division consists of the following:
- advising the Government and public sector agencies a range of advisory services with respect to (a) the development of proposals for legislation, and (b) the process to enact and implement legislation;
- drafting Government Bills and accompanying explanatory statements for introduction to Parliament;
- drafting subsidiary legislation to implement the Acts administered by the Government and other public sector agencies;
- participating in inter-ministry and public-private sector committees driving emerging policies and law reform;
- providing access to accurate and updated legislation (both Acts and subsidiary legislation) on the Singapore Statutes Online website;
- maintaining LegiS@Gov, a database of Singapore legislation, on the Government Intranet;
- producing revised editions of legislation under the direction of the Law Revision Commissioners;
- providing training on effective law making and legislative drafting in partnership with the Civil Service College.
Who we are and what we do
The Legislation Division has 4 functional groups: the Law Drafting Group, the Law Editing and Revision Group, the Law Publishing, Database Management and Legislative Systems Group and the Legal Policy, Planning and Standards Unit.
Law Drafting Group
The Law Drafting Group comprises lawyers who draft Bills and Subsidiary legislation, advise the Government and other public sector agencies on legislative approaches and solutions, and on the initial implementation of legislation enacted. The drafters also carry out law revision work from time to time.
The Group is divided into 6 clusters, namely:
- Infrastructure and Environment Cluster
- Social Cluster
- Economic Cluster
- Centre of Government Cluster
- Law & Technology Cluster
- Security Cluster
Law Editing and Revision Group
The Law Editing and Revision Group comprises editors and editorial assistants and is responsible for:
(a) reviewing, editing and proof-reading draft legislation prepared by law drafters and editors to ensure that they are accurate, inherently consistent and error-free, and
(b) to ensure the timely production of legislation for introduction to Parliament and for publication in the Gazette.
The Law Revision unit within the Group also prepares revised editions of the laws under the authority of the Law Revision Commissioners.
Law Publishing, Database Management and Legislative Systems Group
The Law Publishing, Database Management and Legislative Systems Group is responsible for maintaining and publishing legislation that is introduced in Parliament and all enacted legislation on the Legislation Editing and Authentic Publishing System which supplies the following online systems:
- Versioned Legislation Database (VLDB) (internal)
- LegiS@Gov (for the Government Intranet)
- Singapore Statutes Online (SSO) (for the general public).
The Legislation Division has taken over the type-setting of legislation from the Government Printer, producing Presentation Copies for Bills and type-setting subsidiary legislation for publication. The Group also produces informal consolidations of all legislation.
If you require access to Singapore legislation, please visit the Singapore Statutes Online (SSO) website at https://sso.agc.gov.sg.
Legal Policy, Planning and Standards Unit
The Legal Policy, Planning and Standards Unit is responsible for collating and keeping a record of decisions and standards on legal policies for the drafting of legislation. It also works with the AGC-LS Academy to source and plan for training for the Division, and performs the secretariat function for annual Bill programme.