At one point, governments have seen money lenders as illegal scammers preying on employees, individuals, and Singaporeans who have financial issues. Some unscrupulous groups had set forth terms that they can change as the borrower finishes their paying term. Fortunately, with Singapore’s Ministry of Law (MinLaw) finally enacting the Moneylender’s Act and having the RoM in place, money lending is now both legal and helpful for many Singaporeans.
The RoM isn’t just the list that comprises all regulated and licensed moneylenders in Singapore. It acts as the central hub of information that Singaporeans and foreigners in Singapore can refer to if they intend to borrow from any money lender in the country.
The Primary Responsibilities of The Registry
The RoM’s responsibility is to be the repository of knowledge about Singapore’s money lending industry in addition to keeping records of all registered and licensed moneylenders in the country. Furthermore, the RoM links itself directly to Singapore’s MinLaw, which oversees all money lending activities and acts as arbiters in all money lender vs borrower cases.
In addition, the RoM is the best way to register a Singapore moneylender business through their e-Services facility. Alternatively, applicants can just walk into the Ministry of Law to register their business provided they bring and fulfill all necessary requirements.
Helping Money Lenders Start a Legitimate Business
If you’re a Singapore money lender looking to start your own financing business, you’ll need to register through the Registry’s e-Services facility as a sole proprietor or partnership business. You can choose to be incorporated as a money lending entity in the country.
It’s the Registry’s decision to grant your licensure as a money lender. The RoM will then have you go through the money lender’s test. The test mostly comprises of knowledge about the Moneylender’s Act and money lending rules in Singapore.
The money lender’s test costs about S$130 for every attempt. Once you pass, you can submit an online application to begin and manage a money lending business that the RoM will record as part of its list.
A Throve of Information for Borrowers
Singaporeans and foreigners who are new to money lending and want to make sure they’re working with legitimate money lenders won’t just have to refer to the existing list of legitimate entities. They can familiarise themselves with the laws that protect borrowers and lenders from unfair business practices and problematic borrowers respectively.
The RoM website has a full list of frequently asked questions. These questions help borrowers narrow down which financing they need, understand their legal responsibilities, know when their money lender has committed an illegitimate act, and all their rights proceeding from having financing.
Furthermore, it can inform you about the legitimate amounts Singaporeans and foreigners can borrow, the differences, and the reason and logic behind the rates and fees.
Can I Complain About Illegal Money Lender Practices At The Registry?
If you’ve encountered money lenders who ask for your SingPass User ID, passwords for bank accounts, social media accounts, and other information you consider delicate, then your money lender has committed an illegal activity. Unfortunately, the RoM will not handle your complaint against the offending party.
Instead, you’ll need to pursue this matter with Singapore’s Small Claims Tribunal or the Court. As a consumer, any borrower has the right to question their money lender’s activities through the Consumer Protection Act. Additionally, Singapore’s Court can render unfair or illegitimate charges aside and invalid or forgiven.
Can The Registry Help Me Find Great Money Lenders to Work With?
The Registry via their website provides the complete and regularly updated list of licensed moneylenders you can trust to provide you legitimate loan lending services. No question about it, you can definitely work with any licensed moneylender you find on their list and get your financing within the same week or just a few days.
In addition, the RoM can answer any questions you might have about Singapore moneylenders. However, the exact amount of time the RoM will respond regarding the money lender you intend to work with depends on their availability during the time.
Will The Registry Help Me If I Can’t Repay My Money Lenders Due to Financial Difficulties?
The RoMis not responsible for handling any consolidation or mediation between you and your money lender if you have financial difficulties. However, Singapore has many other institutions that can help you with debt consolidation or negotiating high-interest debts. For example, the Adullam Life Counseling, Blessed Grace Social Services, and other organizations that specialize in debt consolidation will make themselves available to you if you can qualify for their initial requirements.
Similarly, most money lenders may forgive your loans by refinancing your current debt with a debt consolidation deal. This is possible especially if you use the debt consolidation service of the money lender you’re indebted to.
Is The RoM Where I Can Renew My Money Lender’s Licence?
Yes. However, you must fulfill a series of requirements before you can have your money lender’s license renewed. One is having had great conduct with minimal to zero complaints from borrowers.
Next, you’ll need to submit a new tenancy agreement of one-year leasing. This new year lease must be set right after the end of the previous leasing for the branch or branches. You’ll also need to present a proof of premise to them to approve your license renewal.
If you have a Certificate of Exemption from the Moneylenders Act, you can renew your certificate with them as well using their e-Services readily available on their website. However, you’ll also need to fulfill a different set of requirements to proceed with your Certificate of Exemption.
The Registry Is Always Within Reach If You Need Help
The Singapore MinLaw has the RoM easily accessible if you have any questions. Its FAQ section is available for you to read at any time you need clarification about certain moneylenders you intend to work with.
Additionally, you can learn about your rights as a consumer in case the moneylenders perform illegitimate activities that have harmed you as a person. In doing so, the MinLaw can act against the money lender, and you can have yourself protected immediately.