Admiralty Proceedings

The admiralty jurisdiction of the High Court may be invoked in accordance with the provisions of High Court (Admiralty Jurisdiction) Act (Cap. 123 2001 Rev Ed). Admiralty proceedings may take the form of an action against a ship (action in rem) or against a person (action in personam). In some cases, admiralty proceedings may be commenced both against a ship and against a specific person or persons.

Admiralty proceedings are governed by Order 70 of the Rules of Court.


Issue and Validity of the Writ

A Writ issued in relation to admiralty proceedings is valid for 12 months. For an admiralty in rem action, the Writ should be in accordance with Form 159 of the Rules of Court. For an action in personam, the Writ should be in accordance with Form 2 of the Rules of Court. Although an in rem Writ may be issued when the ship is out of jurisdiction, (i.e. outside Singapore), the service of an in rem Writ can only be effected when the ship comes within jurisdiction. An application for the renewal of the Writ will be by way of a filing of a summons.

Arrest of Ships

A common feature of an admiralty in rem action is the arrest and detention of ships. Click on the following link to find out more about Arrest and Release of Vessels.


Pre-Trial Conference

Pre-Trial Conferences (“PTCs”) for shipping and admiralty cases are usually conducted by a Registrar within 6 weeks of the issuance of the Writ. At PTCs, the Registrar will usually seek an update on the status of an action. Directions will then be given for the parties to progress the action in an expeditious and fair manner e.g the filing of interlocutory applications and the timelines therein.

The Court Fees payable for the filing of the documents in respect of Admiralty Proceedings may be found in Appendix B of the Rules of Court.