Advice for sellers Legal issues

There are many categories of health products deemed illegal in the eyes of the law. Some of these are:

  1. Adulterated product - a product that contains undeclared substances
  2. Counterfeit product - a product that is presented in a manner to resemble or pass off as a registered health product
  3. Unregistered product - a product not approved for sale in Singapore

Those caught importing or selling illegal health products may be subject to prosecution under the Medicines Act, Poisons Act, and/or Health Products Act.

  • Medicines Act

    Fine of up to $5,000 and/or 2 years imprisonment

  • Poisons Act

    Fine of up to $10,000 and/or 2 years imprisonment

  • Health Products Act

    Fine of up to $100,000 and/or 3 years imprisonment

Click here to learn about the legislation regarding the sale of health products in Singapore.

Tips Before Selling Health Products

  • Make sure that the health product you are selling meets the legal requirements.
  • Ascertain the origin of the product you are selling. Be doubly sure that it is from a reputable source.
  • If the price is too good to be true, it would be wise to be cautious.
  • Do not sell prescription drugs without a valid licence.
  • Find out your legal responsibilities before selling any health products.
  • Online health product sellers are subject to the same regulations that physical pharmacies are.

Case Study

In 2012, a 22-year-old woman was charged in court for selling an assortment of unregistered health products comprising oral contraceptives, condoms and pregnancy test kits, with a street value of over $5,000. She was fined $19,000 for contravening the Medicines Act, Poisons Act and Health Products Act. To date, this is the most severe penalty meted out to an individual for selling illegal health products online.