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There are the two great legal traditions – the Civil Law Tradition, found in European & South American states, China, Japan, etc., and the Common Law Tradition, found in USA, the UK and Commonwealth states.

Singapore’s legal system, which has its roots in English Law, follows the Common Law Tradition. Unlike the Civil Law Tradition where laws are codified by comprehensive legislation, laws are made by judges on a case by case basis in the Common Law Tradition. This is the doctrine of judicial precedent (or stare decisis), where “the body of law is created incrementally by judges via the application of legal principles to the facts of particular cases” (Tan & Chan, 2009, para 1.3.2).

Within the legal system, there are two classifications of law – Civil Law and Criminal Law. In the area of Civil Law, the influence of the English common law is more prevalent, such as in Contract and Tort Law. In the area of Criminal Law, other jurisdictions have had an impact, i.e. the Penal Code from India (Tan & Chan, 2009).


Sources of Law

  1. Legislation

    • Laws passed by the parliament or government bodies authorised by parliament
      • Statutes (Bills passed by Parliament to become Acts of Parliament)
      • Subsidiary Legislation (Administrative/Operational details to implement parent Act)
    • Search for Bills introduced in Parliament here
    • Search for Parliamentary Debates (or Hansard) here
    • Free access to all Acts of Parliament which are in force is available through Singapore Statutes Online
    • New subsidiary legislation published in the Gazette are available for public viewing for 5 days in eGazette
    • Full details on any piece of legislation (e.g. Bills, Acts, Subsidiary Legislation and their supplements) are available in LawNet
  2. Case Law

    • Decisions made by judges in cases
    • Supreme Court (High Court & Court of Appeal) decisions are reported in Singapore Law Reports (SLR), available in LawNet. Access to judgments of the last 3 months is freely available here
    • Decisions of the Subordinate Courts are available in LawNet. Access the judgments of the last 3 months.

For more resources, click on the Resources tab on the navigation bar at the top.


Tan, E. and Chan, G. (2009). The Singapore Legal System.

Topics/Course Guides

Guide to Academic Writing and Avoiding Plagiarism

This guide is created by Han Lee Yen and maintained by Akbar Hakim bin Haji Harun. If you steal from one author, it’s plagiarism; if you steal from many, it’s research. ~ Wilson Mizner, 1876–1933 Of course Mizner was just kidding when he made the statement above on...

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Guide to Legal Citations

Content at a glance Introduction Case Law and Decisions Searching for Cases in LawNet Singapore Legislation Searching for Singapore Legislation Resources Introduction Legal citation, use in legal research and writing, as well as in court documents can sometimes be...

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Guide to Company Law

This guide is created by Han Lee Yen and maintained by Akbar Hakim bin Haji Harun. All companies in Singapore are principally governed by the Companies Act (Chapter 50, Cap 50 in short) Specific types of companies may also be regulated by other statues, such as:...

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Feel free to contact the library for your Research needs such as:

  1. Enquiries about library resources
  2. Requests for new resources
  3. Library orientation & tours
  4. Instructional classes
  5. Research Assistance

Contact Info:
Tel: (65) 6790 5776
Whatsapp: (65) 8395 0629

Advisory and Consultation:
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NTU Library Homepage

Selected Resources


Books in libraries are classified and arranged on the shelves by call numbers. In NTU Library, the call numbers for law books range from HD to K. The books are located mainly at Level B4 of Business Library (Block N2-B2). The following call numbers are a selected list for browsing the shelves.

Subject Call Number
Arbitration and Award K2400
Company Law KD2079
Intellectual Property K1401
Singapore Business KPP7.3
Taxation HJ2950
Unfair Competition K1575-K3871

Searching for books

Search the library catalogue for books, print journals, movies and other items in the Library. Take note of the call number and location of each item.

Selected book lists by subject

The following are lists for books on the respective topics that can be found in the Business Library:

  1. Business Law
  2. Company Law
  3. Consumer and Marketing Law
  4. Copyright and Intellectual Property
  5. Corporate Insolvency
  6. Employment Law
  7. Information Technology Law
  8. International Trade Law
  9. Negotiation and Dispute Resolution
  10. Taxation

Can’t find a particular book in NTU Library? Recommend it to us

Students can send an e-mail to with as much details about the item as possible – Title, Author/editor, Place of publication, Publisher or producer, Date of publication, ISBN, Edition and Price.

Staff can use Staff Link. Under Resource Request — Library Services — Book Recommendation.

Refer to New Title Recommendation for more details.


E-books or electronic books are the digital version of print books, designed to be read on a PC with Internet connection or on an e-book reader.


Searching through library catalogue

You can search for e-books in the library catalogue

1. Click on Advanced Search

2. Type in “e-book” in a search box and choose the subject field label

3. Type in the search term/s in any of the search boxes with the appropriate field label (i.e. author, title, subject, etc).


4. At the search result screen, click URL at the right bottom of the title displayed. Enter your NTU Network username and password if prompted.


Quite a few of the titles retrieved would be 17th century documents from the Early English Books. It might be better to browse in the e-book providers if you do not have a specific title or topic in mind.

Browsing in E-book Providers

  1. SpringerLink Under Subject Collection, click on Humanities, Social Sciences and Law. Next, in the left-hand panel, under Content Type, select either Book or Book Chapters.
  2. Wiley Online Library In the Browse column, click on Law and Criminology and select Law. Next, select the specific subject area in the left-hand panle, such as Bankruptcy Law, Company Law, etc. A list of e-books available will be shown.

Searching in OECD iLibrary

Some titles on taxation published by OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) cannot be searched in the library catalogue. You can search and access these at OECD iLibrary. 1. Access OECD iLibrary (NTU Network username and password required). 2. Click on the BOOKS tab at the top.


3. In the Themes column, click Taxation.


4. Choose to browse the collection by Title or Year index, read articles from the Annuals & Outlooks or Book Series, or view all publications from the theme of Taxation.


Reference Works

Reference works are secondary sources of law that help to explain and provide references to primary sources of law.

Content at a glance



Black’s law dictionary (c2009) [e-resource]
The most widely cited law book in the world today, the 9th edition of Black’s law dictionary, edited by the world’s leading legal lexicographer Bryan A. Garner, is the most authoritative, comprehensive law dictionary ever published. It contains more than 45,000 terms and definitions of more than 1,000 law-related abbreviations and acronyms, as well as almost 3,000 quotations drawn from sources over five centuries.

Find this book at the Business Library, Call No. KF156.B631 2009.

Dictionary of international business law(c2008)
This compact dictionary is designed to provide a handy source of brief definitions of business and legal terms that are used widely in the United States, the United Kingdom, and the European Union. It also provides basic business and legal examples drawn from Islamic law.

This dictionary is located at the Business Library, Call No. K1004.6.T91

An English-Chinese dictionary of Singapore law 新加坡法律英汉词典(c1999)
Published by Law News Publishers, this bilingual dictionary has a handy guide for English-Chinese translation of legal terms.

Find this dictionary at the Business Library, Call No. KPP2.6.S588


Halsbury’s Laws of England
Halsbury’s Laws of England is a definitive encyclopedic treatise on the laws of England published by LexisNexis Butterworths.

The online version of this encyclopedia is available at LexisNexis Academic.

Halsbury’s Law of Singapore
Halsbury’s Law of Singapore provides commentaries and analyses of Singapore statutes.

You can find it at the Business Library, Call No. KPP6.3.H196

Butterworth’s Annotated Statutes of Singapore
You can find it at the Business Library, Call No. KPP1.9.B988


A database is an organised collection of information that can be accessed and searched through the Internet or a CD-ROM. The following is a list of databases in the area of Law and Taxation:


Core databases

  1. Singapore Statutes Online
    The Singapore Statutes Online, maintained by the Attorney-General’s Chambers, is a legal research tool which offers access to the full text of all current Acts of Parliament that are in force. It is updated on a monthly basis (generally on the 15th of the month). Use this database if you are searching the various Acts of Parliament, e.g. Income Tax Act (Cap 134), Companies Act (Cap 50) and etc. To know more, view the Singapore Statutes Online database information page.
  2. eGazette
    eGazette is the electronic version of the Singapore Government Gazette. It is published daily and Current Notices are available for public viewing for 5 days, after which they can be found in the Archive section. Use this database to search for gazetted subsidiary acts. For details, view its database information page.
  3. LawNet: Legal Research
    LawNet: Legal Research is a service provided by the Singapore Academy of Law. Use this database if you are looking for Singapore and Malaysia cases, English and Indian Case Law, Australia and New Zealand Legal Materials, Singapore Legislation, Singapore Parliamentary Reports and Singapore Treaties. For more details, view the LawNet database information page.
  4. LexisNexis Academic
    LexisNexis Academic provides access to a wide range of credible sources from around the world, covering news, legal and business information. Legal information includes federal and state case law, statutes, secondary sources such as law reviews, and state legal materials. View its database information page for more details.
    Lexis.Com provides access to a comprehensive collection of full-text primary legal source materials and information for business, financial, news and market information research, covering more than 30,000 titles on legal and business information including case law and statutes from the US, UK, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, financial data of public-listed companies and the world’s leading news and business sources. For more details, view database information page.
    * Note: when Security Warning window pops up, please select “No” to access the database.
  6. Westlaw International
    Westlaw International is an online legal information service which provides access to full text legal materials from Canada, Hong Kong, the European Union, the UK and the US. Also included are multinational collections of topical materials in the following areas: Arbitration and International Litigation, Banking & Finance, Bankruptcy / Insolvency, Insurance, Intellectual Property, International Organisations and Treaties. For details, view the Westlaw database information page.
  7. Index to Legal Periodicals Full Text
    Index to Legal Periodicals provides indexing of over 1,025 legal journals, law reviews, yearbooks, institutes, bar association publications, university publications, and government publications. In addition, this database also includes coverage of 1,400 monographs per year as well as international coverage and access to scholarly articles, symposia, jurisdictional surveys, court decisions, legislation, books, book reviews. View its database information pagefor more details.
  8. HeinOnline
    All of the library modules in HeinOnline are image-based (PDF), displaying pages as they originally appeared in hardcopy, including charts, graphs, tables and pictures. Search through their extensive collection of law reviews and journals on topics such as Bankruptcy, Commercial Law, International Business and Economics, Taxation, etc. To find out more, view its database information page.
  9. CLJ Legal Network
    CLJ Legal Network is a database of Malaysian Law. Use this database if you are looking for Malaysian legislation and case laws from the courts, procedures, directories and other legal information of Malaysia. To know more, view the CLJ database information page.
  10. Westlaw China
    Westlaw China replaces iSinolaw. It offers authoritative and comprehensive coverage of legal information on China’s laws, with over 800,000 laws and regulations and 500,000 cases since 1949. For more details, view its database information page.

Related databases

  1. Factiva
    Factiva is a news and business database, providing extensive coverage of international and regional news as well as trade and industry information. Use this database to search for local, regional or international news stories. For more details, view its database information page.
  2. Wiley Online Library
    Wiley Online Library provides access to full-text articles. Search in this database for journal articles under the category of ‘Law and Criminology’. View its database information page for more details.
  3. ISI Emerging Markets Global Information Service
    The ISI Emerging Markets Global Information Service provides extensive, in-depth business intelligence on more than 30 of the world’s main emerging economies in Asia, Central and Eastern Europe and Latin America. You can search for law-related news and information from these emerging economies from this database. To find out more, view its database information page.
  4. SpringerLink
    SpringerLink is one of the world’s leading online information services for scientific, technical, and medical books and journals. Use this database to access full-text articles and e-book contents related to law. For details, view its database information page.
Journals are an important part of the scholarly communication process. Scholarly journals and trade journals are extremely important in furthering the communication of research and practical knowledge.


There are a few ways to access journal articles:

  • NTU Library Subscribed E-journals A-to-Z list

If you have a specific journal in mind, always try to find the electronic copy in the NTU Library Subscribed E-journals A-to-Z list first. There are 4 tabs for searching/browsing the A-to-Z list: ejournals

      1. Browse the index of e-journal providers (e.g. ABI/INFORM, HeinOnline Law Journal Library)
      2. Browse by title of journal
      3. Browse by subjects
      4. Search for titles either by Title Name, Publisher Name, ISSN, Subjects or all of the above

The search result will present the databases that the journal can be found in and the period covered. In the case below, Industrial Law Journal is available in 6 databases subscribed by NTU Library. Click on any one of the links to access the journal. Law_Law-journal2 * Note: If there is an embargo of 1 year for a particular database, access to issues in the last 12 months will not be available.

  • Databases

If you do not have a specific journal in mind and would like to search on a specific subject or topic, you should use the databases instead as you will be able to conduct a search across several journals indexed in the database. Some databases to try:

      1. Wiley Online Library
      2. HeinOnline
      3. Index to Legal Periodicals Full Text
      4. LexisNexis Academic
      5. SpringerLink
      6. Westlaw International

For a full list of databases, please go to Databases.

  • Print Journals

Sometimes, a journal may be available in both print and electronic versions, or it may only be available in either the print version or electronic version. Current issues of print journals are located at Level B2 of Business Library, in the Current Periodicals section. Bound journals (i.e. past issues) are at Level B4. You can search for print journal titles in the library catalogue.

Recommended Journal List

Click on the Law-journal3 or Law-journal4 icons for details on the print or electronic copy of the journal respectively. To subscribe to RSS feeds for Table of Contents of the journals, click on the law-journal5 icon.




RSS Feed

Singapore Academy of Law Journal

Australian Law Journal

Cambridge Law Journal

Journal of Business Law

Available in Westlaw International DB as JBL. Click  to access.

Law Quarterly Review

Lloyd’s Maritime and Commercial Law Quarterly

Modern Law Review

Oxford Journal of Legal Studies

British Tax Review (U.K.)

Available in Westlaw International DB as BTR. Click  to access.

Journal of Economic Psychology (JEP) (The Netherlands)

Journal of the American Taxation Association (U.S.A)

National Tax Journal (U.S.A)


Content at a Glance

Video On Demand titles in Library Catalogue
Chip Taylor Communications
Seton Hall University School of Law
Legal Network Televisions
Other Law-related Videos at the Business Library
Other Law-related videos in NTU Library

The AV collection in the Business Library is located at Level B2, next to the Reserves Collection. Staff and students are free to browse the collection for titles that are of interest to them. Undergrads are only allowed to view DVDs and VCDs in the library, while staff and postgrad students may borrow them home. View the borrowing privileges for students (undergrads and postgrads). View the borrowing privileges for staff, including faculty.

There are a number of law titles in the collection which are on Video Cassette Tapes. These can be viewed on Video Cassette Recorders in the library. To search/browse for AV materials on law in the library catalogue that are available in the Business Library, select “Business Library (AV Collection)” for the location.


Video On Demand titles in Library Catalogue

These videos can be accessed remotely on your PC. Use Internet Explorer and follow the instructions on screen to install the video player if you are using this for the first time.

  1. Passage of law: Singapore’s legal system
    Launch the video via VOD.
  2. International e-commerce regulation and the problem of democracy: business law seminar
    Launch the video via VOD.

Chip Taylor Communications

This set of 3 videos on Copyright are produced by Chip Taylor Communications:

  1. Copyright, research & publication: Copyright FAQs (2006)
    This 36 min. DVD is available in the Business Library, Call No. KF2995.C785R
  2. Copyright and fair use (2006)
    This 36 min. DVD is available in the Business Library, Call No. KF2995.C785
  3. Copyright: the Internet, multimedia and the law (1996)
    To borrow this 40 min. videocassette, enquire at Business Library Service Desk, Call No. L500830

Seton Hall University School of Law

The following videos on International Law are produced by Seton Hall University School of Law with funding from the U.S. Department of Education Center for International Education. To borrow, please enquire at Business Library Service Counter:

  1. International law. Dispute settlement (19–)
    Call No. F508970
  2. International law. International economic law (19–)
    Call No. K508969
  3. International law. Law of treaties (19–)
    Call No. A509734
  4. International law. The nature and sources of international law (19–)
    Call No. G508962

Legal Network Televisions

There are 32 30-minute videos produced by Legal Network Televisions on such topics as Arbitration, Company Law, Intellectual Property and etc. Click here for the list of titles and details. To borrow, do take note of the call numbers of the video and enquire at the Business Library Service Desk.

Other Law-related videos at the Business Library

  1. Copy not right: be creative, be original, be hip (2004) by Intellectual Property of Singapore; an Ad Idem Production. Call No. KPP112.C785
  2. Dispute resolved … by arbitration (1991) by The Society.
    Call No. HD6972.5.D612
  3. The Denning interviews (1984) by Butterworths & Co. and Reed Vision Ltd. Call No. G501715, J501716, L501717
  4. Internet governance (2005) by APDIP. Call No. K564.C6I61G
  5. Legal issues for managers (1996) by Business Advantage Inc.
    Call No.E510303
  6. The Paisley snail (1996) by Law Courts Education Society of British Columbia
    To borrow, enquire at Business Library Service Desk, Call No. J512696, or click here to launch via VOD
  7. Trade mark information for every business (2000) by Intellectual Property Office of Singapore
    Features the vision and mission of the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) to promote intellectual property rights. This presentation will help you understand why and how to protect your brand and corporate identity using trade mark with IPOS.
    This Multimedia CD-ROM is available in Business Library, Call No. KPP112.T763

Other Law-related videos in NTU Library

  1. Boston legal. Season 2 (2006) by Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Call No. B577415
  2. Boston legal. Season 4 (2008) by Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. Available in ACRC, Call No. PN1992.77.B67B747
  3. Company: a law & order enterprise (2002) by Eros Entertainment.
    Call No. PN1995.9.C737
  4. To kill a mockingbird (1998) by Universal Studios Home Video.
    Call No. PN1995.9.T627

This collection consists of textbooks, recommended texts and other reference materials which are core reading materials related to student coursework. Also known as Red-Spot or RBR books. Reserve titles are located in the Audio Visual and Reserves section on Level B2 of the Business Library. You can search for Reserve titles for your courses in the library catalogue. Do note that you can only borrow one Reserve title at a time, and for 2 hours at a time. Return them at the counter on time or you will be fined 50 cts/hr or part thereof.

Searching for Reserves

You can retrieve the Reserves titles by their respective Course Codes from the NTU Library Catalogue.
Go to NTU Library Catalogue:

  1. Click the Reserves tab on the top right-hand side
  2. Key in the course code
  3. Click Search by Course ID.

As seen in the diagram below.


Student Works

You can access reports and work done by NTU students, such as Final Year Reports (FYP), Industrial Attachment (IA) Reports, These and Dissertations, in our Digital Repository, AKA DR-NTU. As these are located in the restricted collection, you will need to log-in using your NTU network username and password.


You can do a search if you have some keywords in mind, or browse by Titles, Authors, Subjects orDate.

Staff Publications

The NBS Business Law Division contribute to the body of knowledge on business law and taxation in Singapore and the region by publishing their research in books, journals, as well as giving presentations in conferences.

Books and Book Chapters

The division have authored or co-authored a number of books on various law topics, as well as contributed to chapters in books. Details of their publications that are in our library collection can be view in this Library Catalogue search results.

Journal Articles and Conference Papers

NTU Library collects staff papers in our Digital Repository, DR-NTU (Open Access). Its aim is to capture, store, preserve and most importantly promote the scholarly output of Nanyang Technological University (NTU) to the global research community.

We encourage research staff to deposit their research papers with us in Digital Repository, DR-NTU (Open Access). Many publishers now allow the self-archiving of publications in institutional repositories. To find out if the journals or publishers that you are working with allow self-archiving, please refer to the Copyright policies and archiving guidelines from Sherpa Romeo.

If you would like to submit your journal articles or conference papers for inclusion into the NBS collection, please follow the instructions about submissions to DR-NTU.

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