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There is one thing worse than an Enbloc ----- and that is an Enbloc done badly. Since the majority have the necessary mandate to sell, then they owe it to all SPs to make a success of it. Minority SPs can only watch and wait, if they sell then lets pray it's at a price we can move on with, if they don't sell, then we are happy to stay for a few more years.

Interest on deposit

UPDATE:  August 1, 2011

New rules to protect conveyancing money kick in Aug 1

In a news release, the Ministry of Law said: “With the new measures, clients’ money in conveyancing transactions will enjoy a higher standard of protection.”
Under the new rule, lawyers will no longer be allowed to receive and hold monies used for purchase or sales of properties unless they are deposited in a specific conveyancing account with five appointed banks, kept with the Singapore Academy of Law (SAL) under its Conveyancing Money Service or placed in an escrow account jointly opened by lawyers acting for the respective parties.
The five appointed banks are Bank of China, DBS Bank, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), The Bank of East Asia, and United Overseas Bank (UOB).
Lawyers who violate this provision may be fined up to $50,000 or jailed for a term not exceeding three years, or both.
They could also face disciplinary proceedings under the Legal Profession Act, the ministry said.
Conveyancing monies are used to pay stamp duties, option deposits, and balance of sales proceeds. Cases of lawyers running away with clients’ conveyancing monies have prompted a public consultation and pilot trials of the new measures.
Property buyers and sellers who opt to have their lawyers hold their conveyancing money should deposit the money into the law firm’s conveyancing account using the suffix, “-CVY” after the law firm’s name.
For clients who choose to use SAL’s Conveyancing Money Service, the agency has set up an electronic Payment Instructions service (ePI). This is to enable efficient and secure system for initiating and countersigning payment instructions for the withdrawal of the conveyancing accounts or SAL.
MinLaw said it had embarked on several outreach activities to prepare lawyers for the smooth implementation of the new rules.
Source : Channel NewsAsia – 31 Jul 2011

ALSO: Banks are giving zero interest on the deposits held - or so I am told.

The en bloc lawyer will no longer be able to hold the 10% deposit paid by the Developer-Buyer into his account and claim that as stakeholder he should be payed for this service by keeping the interest accrued (subject to contractual approval by a sale committee).

It's a feather taken out of the lawyer's cap; the feather of implied integrity that is, just because a few bad apples absconded with their client's money.

Effect on en bloc sales: It remains to be seen whether or not the free service rendered by lawyers in an en bloc sale will continue in it's present form - no sale, no pay. A failed attempt at the STB/Courts could leave the en bloc lawyer severely out of pocket. The interest on the deposit was, in some cases at least, a welcome cushion from the fall
  • Alternatively, it could make en bloc lawyers even more aggressive and/or conniving in their push to complete the sale by any means. Remember their clients are the sale committee and not the majority owners. Remember too their integrity is compromised by having to take their own best interest into consideration as well as their clients. If there is a toss up between the two - guess which one takes precedence.

    En bloc lawyers will not have any reason for delaying application for sale to the STB and/or stretching out the proceedings in order to accumulate interest earned on the deposit in a high interest yielding account (just a supposition on my part).


  1. Hi

    Just want to find out what happened to the $700 plus that each majority owners paid sometime in 2007?

  2. I presume it went towards payment for the newspaper notice, disbursements and application for sale to the STB. I am not privy to how many people payed up - but quite a few refused, so if there were a shortfall I have no idea who paid for that.