Singapore Civil Service - Declaration of Indebtedness and Financial Embarrassment

Civil servants or public officers in Singapore are expected to declare their financial standing when they first join and every year thereafter or whenever their  unsecured financial liabilities exceed 3 months salary.

This declaration of indebtedness is meant to ensure that civil servants remain of good financial standing and helps the Public Service know whether an officer becomes vulnerable due to financial embarrassment.  The intention is meant to protect the officer (and by extension the Public Service) and is not meant to penalise the officer.

An officer is considered to be financially embarrassed if he or she has defaulted in repayment of loans, credit facilities and liabilities for 3 consecutive months.

Other situations where one is financially embarrassed also include being an umdischarged bankrupt or where one takes a loan outside certain categories.

So this means that if one has not been making payments for credit card bills for 3 months consecutively, one will be considered financially embarrassed.  Or if one has borrowed from a money lender,  one will also be considered financially embarrassed.

So a civil servant must be careful to take only secured loans like housing or car loans. Other loans such as education loan, renovation loan is also allowed.  Unsecured loans like balance transfer or credit cards must be capped at 3 months salary.

A civil servant who is financially embarrassed must declare.

Check out other posts related to the civil service:


  1. So if a civil servant wnts to take up margin loan with his online broker, using his equities as collateral. It is a secured loan, but if it exceed 3mnth gross, it's still considered not allowed ?

  2. Types of loans allowed
    Public officers are specifically limited to loans from three categories:
    A. Secured loans and credit facilities e.g. housing and car loans
    B. Special category of unsecured loans and credit facilities
    e.g. education-related loans, renovation loans, loans from co-operatives
    C. Unsecured loans, credit facilities and liabilities capped at 3 times monthly salary e.g. lines of
    credit, credit card facilities. Officers are not allowed to borrow from licensed moneylenders.


Featured Post

Starting Pay in Civil Service and Yearly Bonuses

Many young graduates who are seriously considering joining the civil service are likely curious to find out what is the starting pay or sala...