Metaverse connection

Singapore: Legal services can be offered in the metaverse, law ministry official says

Singapore’s legal sector is looking to keep up with emerging technologies like the metaverse. According to Singapore’s Second Minister for Law, Edwin Tong, legal services such as marriage proceedings, court case disputes, and government services may one day be offered in the metaverse.

Tong, who is also the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, was speaking at the TechLaw Fest 2022 event themed “Up Your Game.” The official highlighted that carrying out legal proceedings virtually and online has been gaining ground since the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the growing popularity of the metaverse innovation, it is not unthinkable that Singapore may one day have an integrated metaverse platform for legal services, he said. One key use case he envisions for such a platform is dispute resolution which Singapore’s legal system is a global leader in.

“I believe such an integrated platform will make the whole dispute resolution process more convenient, efficient, and it keeps pace with how the rest of the world is developing,” he stated.

An integrated metaverse platform can easily be used for holding information on various dispute resolution mechanisms and standard clauses; filing the case with a chosen institution; identifying arbitrators, mediators, experts, and witnesses; communicating with parties involved; booking facilities and dates; and making payments.

He stated that other technologies related to the metaverse, including augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and NFTs, can also be game-changing in the legal system. However, the minister concedes that for Singapore to embark on such a project, it will need to be in high demand from businesses.

“If businesses see a need for an online replica of what Singapore might offer in the physical space for this to be replicated in the metaverse space, we will explore building one,” Tong added.

Metaverse adoption in the legal sector

While Singapore is considering the possibilities, metaverse platforms have already found use cases in the legal sector. Earlier this year, Decentraland hosted its first marriage ceremony in its metaverse virtual world, although the union may not be legally recognized by law, according to a Business Insider report.

Singapore is not the only country considering offering government services in the metaverse or deepening its adoption. South Korea has set aside a $117 million budget for investment in driving metaverse innovation. One of its projects is to build a metaverse portal for government service in the city of Seoul.

Meanwhile, Japan has recently set up a Web 3.0 Policy Office that will oversee all efforts to build up the country’s business environment in relation to the metaverse.

Watch: The BSV Global Blockchain Convention presentation, Masters of the Metaverse

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