“Feel the fear and do it anyway”
Ong Pei Ching
LL.B. (HONS) (NUS)
PARTNER
Fellow of the Singapore Institute of Arbitrators
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“From time to time in the years to come, I hope you will be treated unfairly, so that you will come to know the value of justice.”

 

These unconventional words of wisdom by US Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts resonate well with Pei Ching, who had vowed to right the world’s wrongs, having experienced and witnessed her fair share of unfairness. The skilful litigator finds satisfaction and meaning in fighting for the vulnerable, such as when she helped the parents of an infant born with cerebral palsy due to medical negligence.

Pei Ching joined TSMP in 2018 with 10 years of legal experience under her belt at two large firms, also earning valuable client-side training when she was seconded to a bank to manage Madoff fraud-related litigation. Her insatiable curiosity means that she relishes working with a wide range of clients from individuals to restaurant chains and manufacturers, on a variety of matters involving employment, shareholders’ disputes, intellectual property, defamation and general corporate disputes. Their business is her business; Pei Ching invests an immense amount of time to thoroughly understand each and every client.

During her rare downtime, Pei Ching has a proclivity for heading outdoors, where she enjoys hiking, diving and snowboarding. In this area, she considers scaling Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain, as her crowning achievement.

We hear you like the great outdoors?

Absolutely. Being in nature, with its awesome but unforgiving beauty, gives me a sense of perspective.

Much like the practice of high-stakes litigation, one is only as good as one’s team. Trekking or diving trips with those who look out for each other, and share the same values, make all the difference. We had a magical encounter with a whale shark cut short, when one member of the group wandered too close for a better photo, depriving the rest a chance to view the majestic animal when it swam away.

Having said that, I too learnt to respect nature, when I lost my board river surfing in Malaysia.

Have you surfed since then?

With a pre-schooler son now, the only surfing I do is on the TV. I am partial to comedies. It’s the ideal way to relax after a full day of working and parenting.

Also, it’s a study of the human condition, in an enjoyable way. After all, a common saying is “it’s funny because it’s true”. Cross-examination is very similar to making a sitcom joke – both depend on timing and keen observations of human behaviour, by both cross-examiner/writer and the audience/judge.

Which one is your favourite?

I have so many. Schitt’s Creek and Modern Family with their clever jokes but heart-warming moments. “Don’t be a Lawyer” on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend cracked me up. Classics like Friends continue to be relatable and binge-worthy. And who can forget the dark humour and irreverence of Fleabag?

But Big Bang Theory ranks high on the list, even though some of the physics-based jokes may have gone over my head.  Lawyers are quite different from physicists. I suspect it’s my curiosity into the worlds other people inhabit that explains both my delight in Big Bang Theory and interest in my clients’ businesses.

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