A Singaporean Woman’s Rights under the Women’s Charter

Last updated on January 15, 2024

What are the rights of a Singaporean woman under the Women’s Charter?
  1. The wife shall have the right to use her own surname and name separately. (section 51)
  2. The husband and the wife shall have equal rights in the running of the family home. (section 48)
  3. Housekeeping allowance given by the husband to the wife shall be treated as belonging to both parties in equal shares, unless there are exceptional agreements proving otherwise (section 49)
  4. Parents have a duty to maintain their children. (section 68)
  5. Any married woman whose husband fails to provide her reasonable maintenance may apply for her maintenance of either a monthly allowance or a lump sum to the Court. (section 69)
  6. Divorce cannot be filed within 3 years of a marriage and can only be for the sole reason that marriage has irretrievably broken down. The Court would accept the following as grounds for divorce:
    1. One party has committed adultery;
    2. One party has behaved in a way that the other cannot be reasonably expected to continue living with him or her;
    3. One party has deserted the other for at least 2 years;
    4. The parties have separated for at least 3 years, and the defendant consents to divorce
    5. The parties have separated for at least 4 years, and whether the defendant has consented to the divorce is irrelevant
  7. Judicial separation can also be filed, allowing both parties to stop cohabiting, for the above mentioned reasons.
  8. The court can order for the division of matrimonial assets upon divorce.
  9. The court can order a man to pay maintenance to his wife upon divorce, separation or annulment of marriage.
  10. Pimping (living on the earnings of a prostitute), as well as the trafficking of women and girls, are all offences under the Women’s Charter, in addition to other acts. (section 140, 141)

 

Marriage
  1. Remarriage for Divorcees in Singapore: When Can I Remarry?
  2. Civil Marriage in Singapore: How to Register and Solemnise
  3. Muslim Marriage in Singapore: How to Register, Inter-Faith and More
  4. What is the governing law for your marriage?
  5. Marriage Counselling: How Does It Work and What to Expect
  6. A Singaporean Woman's Rights under the Women's Charter
Abortion
  1. Termination of Pregnancy: Is Abortion Legal in Singapore?
Adoption
  1. Adopting a Child in Singapore: What You Need to Know
  2. Why Might an Unwed Parent Adopt His or Her Own Biological Child?
  3. Hiring a Surrogate: 6 Legal Issues for Singaporean Couples
  4. Adoption Leave in Singapore: An Essential Guide For Employees
Legal Guardianship
  1. Applying to be a Legal Guardian in Singapore
Assisted Reproduction
  1. Who are the legal parents of children conceived through assisted reproduction?
  2. In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) in Singapore: Process & Costs
Raising Children
  1. Parents’ Guide to Family Guidance Orders in Singapore
  2. Parents' Guide to Baby Bonus in Singapore: Eligibility, Payout & More
  3. 7 Brutal Truths About Having an Illegitimate Child in Singapore
  4. Foster Care: How Do I Become a Foster Parent in Singapore?
  5. Voluntary Care Agreement for Children in Singapore
  6. Parents’ Guide to Beyond Parental Control Orders in Singapore
Miscellaneous
  1. Teenage Pregnancy and Rights of Teen Parents in Singapore
  2. Mandatory Counselling: When Will It be Ordered by the Court?
  3. Must Your Report and Register a Birth or Death in Singapore?
  4. Running Away From Home in Singapore: Is It Legal?
  5. Adding a Parent's Name to Your Child's Birth Cert in Singapore
  6. Vulnerable Adults: How Caregivers Can Protect & Care For Them
  7. Maintenance of Parents: Your Child’s Duties and How to File