Page 1 of 1

Arbitration clause on Tenancy Agreement

Posted: Tue, 08 Sep 2020 6:49 pm
by camberiu
Hi everyone,

We have decided not renewed our condo lease with a difficult landlord. The landlord is now withholding our security deposit under the most absurd claims (we have proof and evidence that all his claims are false and without merit) and we are ready to go to the small claims court. However, upon looking at our lease agreement, there is at the very end a clause about disputes that we haven't noticed until now. It is as follows:
If any dispute or difference shall arise between the Landlord and the Tenant touching any clause, matter or thing whatsoever herein contained or the operation or construction thereof or any matter or thing in any way connected with this Agreement then in every such case the dispute or difference shall be referred to one arbitrator to be appointed by the President of the Law Society of Singapore in accordance with the provisions of the Arbitration Act or any statutory modification or re-enactment thereof for the time being in force.
Does anyone have any experience with this? Getting an arbitrator from the Law Society of Singapore (whatever the hell that is) seems significantly more expensive and complicated than simply using the small claims court. Any advice would be greatly appreciated

Re: Arbitration clause on Tenancy Agreement

Posted: Wed, 09 Sep 2020 11:22 pm
by sndy
camberiu wrote:
Tue, 08 Sep 2020 6:49 pm
Hi everyone,

We have decided not renewed our condo lease with a difficult landlord. The landlord is now withholding our security deposit under the most absurd claims (we have proof and evidence that all his claims are false and without merit) and we are ready to go to the small claims court. However, upon looking at our lease agreement, there is at the very end a clause about disputes that we haven't noticed until now. It is as follows:
If any dispute or difference shall arise between the Landlord and the Tenant touching any clause, matter or thing whatsoever herein contained or the operation or construction thereof or any matter or thing in any way connected with this Agreement then in every such case the dispute or difference shall be referred to one arbitrator to be appointed by the President of the Law Society of Singapore in accordance with the provisions of the Arbitration Act or any statutory modification or re-enactment thereof for the time being in force.
Does anyone have any experience with this? Getting an arbitrator from the Law Society of Singapore (whatever the hell that is) seems significantly more expensive and complicated than simply using the small claims court. Any advice would be greatly appreciated
Sorry to break this to you but in case of arbitration clause one cannot go to SCT, I remember seeing this as a perquisite check while filing a SCT case.

Not sure on arbitrator costs though, if you decide to go with that route

Re: Arbitration clause on Tenancy Agreement

Posted: Thu, 10 Sep 2020 7:25 am
by PNGMK
Oh you got done! The only fair court on this matters is the SCT. Arbitration costs a small fortune (thousands per day or hundreds per hour) and is NON BINDING.

This is a huge problem and warning. You need legal advice way above the free advice on this board.

Re: Arbitration clause on Tenancy Agreement

Posted: Thu, 10 Sep 2020 8:40 pm
by x9200
Yep, sounds bad, but don't lose all hope yet. Take a look here:
https://www.lawsociety.org.sg/wp-conten ... ndbook.pdf
There is a chapter on pro bono arbitration for less than 20k claims. Perhaps you manage to fall under it.
But I agree with PNGMK, you'd better find a lawyer.

Re: Arbitration clause on Tenancy Agreement

Posted: Sat, 12 Sep 2020 12:08 pm
by camberiu
Thanks everyone. I will look for a lawyer.