- What is the Mandatory Parenting Programme?
The Mandatory Parenting Programme is a one-to-one consultation session for parents with one or more children below 21 years old, before they file for divorce. It is compulsory for persons who want to file a divorce, but cannot agree with their spouses on the matters relating to divorce and care arrangements for their children.
- Why is the Mandatory Parenting Programme necessary?
Due to recent amendments in the Women’s Charter in December 2016, it is compulsory for any party starting divorce or filing a counterclaim in a divorce, to attend the two hour Mandatory Parenting Programme before filing a divorce.
- Who provides this consultation under the Mandatory Parenting Programme?
It is provided by counselors from the Ministry of Social and Family Development’s Divorce Support Specialists Agencies (“DSSA”).
- What is the aim of Mandatory Parenting Programme?
The Mandatory Parenting Programme seeks to better protect children affected by their parents’ divorce. It aims to guide parents in considering living arrangements, finances and housing after the divorce, and to increase parents’ awareness on the impact of divorce on their children.
- Do I have to pay for the Mandatory Parenting Programme?
No. Both the online application and the one-time consultation are provided free at the DSSAs.
- Can I don’t attend the Mandatory Parenting Programme consultation?
If you are the applicant who wants to start the divorce, you will not be able to file the divorce if you do not attend the consultation.
If you are the applicant’s spouse and you do not attend the consultation, you will not be able to make a counterclaim during the divorce.
- How do I apply for the Mandatory Parenting Programme?
We can help you apply for it online when you come to us for your first consultation with us. Alternatively, you can apply for it on your own online. After the online application, the Ministry of Social and Family Development will process your application and a counselor will contact you to arrange an appointment.
- Can I get a lawyer to attend the Mandatory Parenting Programme on my behalf?
No, you must personally attend the 2-hour MPP consultation on your own at one of the DSSA centres.
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Ng Pui Khim is a senior lawyer with over 20 years of private practice experience focusing on divorces (family and matrimonial law), real estate (conveyancing practice), wills and succession law.
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