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Singapore Medical Council overcharged Susan Lim: Courts

High Court ruled that the legal bills sought by the Singapore Medical Council from Dr Susan Lim, in relation to an earlier court case, were overcharged.

Ironically, the case that was awarded in favour of SMC two years ago against Dr Lim was the result of a probe into whether Dr Lim has overcharged her client.

Dr Lim was earlier investigated for overcharging her client, a member of the Brunei royal family, for services which totalled about $24 million. She was found guilty of professional misconduct in 2012 and was suspended for three years, censured and fined $10,000 by the SMC.

SMC then proceeded to file claims against her, to the sum of $1.33 million. However, the High Court ruled on Wednesday, 1 October that the legal bills sought by SMC were themselves inflated, and reduced them to $317,000.

SMC is believed to be seeking an appeal against the High Court judgement.

SMC's legal work for the case was done by Senior Counsel Alvin Yeo, a Member of Parliament, and lawyers Melanie Ho and Lim Wei Lee.

The following is a sample of the overcharged items.

ItemSMC claimed it cost…High Court ruled it should cost…
Total legal fees$1.33 million$317,000
Legal cost for trial$900,000$180,000
Legal cost for appeal hearing$150,000$70,000
Legal assessment for the case$235,000$22,000
Expert witnesses$52,000$14,000
Ring binders for documents$6 per unit$2.50 per unit