(Jersey) Law 2003
A LAW to provide for the
admissibility of hearsay evidence and the proof of certain documentary evidence
in civil proceedings; and for connected purposes.
In this Law –
“civil proceedings” means civil proceedings before any
“court” means any tribunal in relation to which the
strict rules of evidence apply, whether as a matter of law or by agreement of
“document” means anything in which information of any
description is recorded, and “copy”, in relation to a document,
means anything onto which information recorded in the document has been copied,
by whatever means and whether directly or indirectly;
“hearsay” means a statement made otherwise than by a
person while giving oral evidence in the proceedings which is tendered as
evidence of the matters stated, and references to hearsay include hearsay of
“oral evidence” includes evidence which, by reason of a
defect of speech or hearing, a person called as a witness gives in writing or
“original statement”, in relation to hearsay evidence,
means the underlying statement (if any) by –
the case of evidence of fact, a person having personal knowledge of that fact;
the case of evidence of opinion, the person whose opinion it is;
“statement” means any representation of fact or opinion,
to paragraph (2) this Law applies to any civil proceedings begun on or
after 1st February 2005.
Law shall apply to civil proceedings begun before 1st February 2005
parties to those proceedings so agree; and
court so consents.
of hearsay evidence
shall not be excluded on the ground that it is hearsay.
in this Law affects the admissibility of evidence admissible apart from this
(3) Articles 4
to 8 do not apply to hearsay evidence admissible apart from this Article even
if it may also be admissible by virtue of this Article.
of proposal to adduce hearsay evidence
to the following provisions of this Article, a party proposing to adduce
hearsay evidence in civil proceedings shall give to the other party or parties
to those proceedings –
notice (if any) of that proposal; and
so requested, such particulars of or relating to the evidence,
as is reasonable and practicable in the circumstances to enable that
party or parties to deal with matters arising from the fact that evidence is
of Court may –
classes of proceedings or evidence in relation to which paragraph (1) does
not apply; and
provision as to the manner in which (including the time within which) the
duties imposed by that paragraph are to be complied with in the cases where it
parties to the proceedings may exclude paragraph (1) by agreement and a
party may waive any requirement for notice to be given to him or her.
failure to comply with paragraph (1), or with Rules of Court under
paragraph (2)(b), does not affect the admissibility of the evidence but
the court may take into account such failure –
considering the exercise of its powers with respect to the course of
proceedings and costs; and
a matter adversely affecting the weight to be given to the evidence in
accordance with Article 6.
to call witness for cross-examination on hearsay statement
Rules of Court may provide that where a party adduces hearsay
evidence of a statement made by a person and does not call that person as a
witness, any other party to the proceedings may, with the leave of the court,
call that person as a witness and cross-examine that person on the statement as
if that person had been called by the first-mentioned party and as if the
hearsay statement were that person’s evidence in chief.
relevant to weighing of hearsay evidence
estimating the weight (if any) to be given to hearsay evidence the court shall
have regard to any circumstances from which any inference can reasonably be
drawn as to the reliability or otherwise of the evidence.
may be had, in particular, to the following –
it would have been reasonable and practicable for the party by whom the
evidence was adduced to have produced the maker of the original statement as a
the original statement was made contemporaneously with the occurrence or
existence of the matters stated;
the evidence involves multiple hearsay;
any person involved had any motive to conceal or misrepresent matters;
the original statement was an edited account, or was made in collaboration with
another or for a particular purpose;
the circumstances in which the evidence is adduced as hearsay are such as to
suggest an attempt to prevent proper evaluation of its weight.
evidence shall not be admitted if or to the extent that it is shown to consist
of, or to be proved by means of, a statement made by a person who was not
competent as a witness at the time he or she made the statement.
the purposes of paragraph (1) –
competent as a witness” means suffering from such mental or physical
infirmity, or lack of understanding, as would render a person incompetent as a
witness in civil proceedings; but
child shall be treated as competent as a witness if, in the opinion of the
court the child understands that it is his or her duty to speak the truth and
the child has sufficient understanding to justify his or her evidence being
hearsay evidence is adduced and the maker of the original statement, or of any
statement relied upon to prove another statement, is not called as a
which, if he or she had been so called, would be admissible for the purpose of
attacking or supporting his or her credibility as a witness is admissible for
that purpose in the proceedings; and
tending to prove that, whether before or after he or she made the statement, he
or she made any other statement inconsistent with it is admissible for the
purpose of showing that he or she had contradicted himself or herself.
paragraph (3), evidence may not be given of any matter of which, if the
maker of the original statement, or of any statement relied upon to prove
another statement, had been called as a witness and had denied that matter in
cross-examination, evidence could not have been adduced by the cross-examining
statements of witnesses
to the following provisions of this Article, the provisions of this Law as to
hearsay evidence apply equally (but with any necessary modifications) in
relation to a previous statement made by a person called as a witness in the
party who has called or intends to call a person as a witness in civil
proceedings may not in those proceedings adduce evidence of a previous
statement made by that person, except –
the leave of the court; or
the purpose of rebutting a suggestion that his or her evidence has been
(2) shall not be construed as preventing a written statement of oral evidence
which a party to the proceedings intends to lead, from being adopted by a
witness in giving evidence or treated as his or her evidence.
any enactment or rule of law makes provision as to –
far a witness may be discredited by the party producing the witness;
proof of contradictory statements made by a witness; and
as to previous statements in writing,
this Law does not authorize the adducing of evidence of a previous
inconsistent or contradictory statement otherwise than in accordance with such
enactment or rule.
(4) is without prejudice to any provision made by Rules of Court under
in this Law affects any rule of law as to the circumstances in which, where a
person called as a witness is cross-examined on a document used by the person
to refresh his or her memory, that document may be made evidence in the
in this Article shall be construed as preventing a statement of any description
referred to in this Article from being admissible by virtue of Article 3
as evidence of the matters stated.
admissible at customary law
rule of law whereby in civil proceedings an admission adverse to a party to the
proceedings, whether made by that party or by another person, may be given in
evidence against that party for the purpose of proving any fact stated in the
admission is superseded.
rule of law whereby in civil proceedings –
works dealing with matters of a public nature (for example, histories,
scientific works, dictionaries and maps) are admissible as evidence of facts of
a public nature stated in them;
documents (for example, public registers, and returns made under public
authority with respect to matters of public interest) are admissible as
evidence of facts stated in them; or
(for example, Acts of Court, treaties and commissions) are admissible as
evidence of facts stated in them,
shall continue to have effect.
rule of law whereby in civil proceedings –
of a person’s reputation is admissible for the purpose of proving the person’s
good or bad character; or
of reputation or family tradition is admissible –
(i) for the purpose
of proving or disproving pedigree or the existence of a marriage, or
(ii) for the purpose
of proving or disproving the existence of any public or general right or of
identifying any person or thing,
shall continue to have effect in so far as it authorizes the court
to treat such evidence as proving or disproving that matter.
any rule referred to in paragraph (3) applies, reputation or family
tradition shall be treated for the purposes of this Law as a fact and not as a
statement or multiplicity of statements about the matter in question.
words in which a rule of law mentioned in this Article is described are
intended only to identify the rule and shall not be construed as altering it in
of privilege against incrimination of self or spouse or civil partner in
proceedings relating to intellectual property
Article 9(1), in any proceedings to which this paragraph applies a person
shall not be excused, by reason that to do so would tend to expose that person,
or his or her spouse or civil partner, to proceedings for a related offence or
for the recovery of a related penalty –
(a) from answering any questions put to that person in the
first-mentioned proceedings; or
(b) from complying with any order made in those proceedings.
(2) Paragraph (1)
applies to the following civil proceedings in the Royal Court,
(a) proceedings for infringement of rights pertaining to any
intellectual property or for passing off;
(b) proceedings brought to obtain disclosure of information relating
to any infringement of such rights or to any passing off; and
(c) proceedings brought to prevent any apprehended infringement of
such rights or any apprehended passing off,
where those proceedings began on or after the day this Article came
to paragraph (4), no statement or admission made by a person –
(a) in answering a question put to him in any proceedings to which paragraph (1) applies; or
(b) in complying with any order made in any such proceedings,
shall, in proceedings for any related offence or for the recovery of
any related penalty, be admissible in evidence against that person or (unless
they married after the making of the statement or admission) against the spouse
of that person.
in paragraph (3) shall render any statement or admission made by a person
as there mentioned inadmissible in evidence against that person in proceedings
for perjury or contempt of court.
this Article –
“intellectual property” means –
patent, trade mark or registered design;
within the meaning of Part 1 of the Intellectual Property (Unregistered
Rights) (Jersey) Law 2011; and
right conferred by Part 2, 3, 4 or 5 of the Intellectual Property
(Unregistered Rights) (Jersey) Law 2011 that is equivalent to copyright;
right, within the meaning of Part 7 of the Intellectual Property
(Unregistered Rights) (Jersey) Law 2011,
and any other technical or commercial information or other
“related offence”, in relation to any proceedings to
which paragraph (1) applies, means –
(a) in the case of proceedings within paragraph (2)(a) or (b) –
(i) any offence
committed by or in the course of the infringement or passing off to which those
proceedings relate, or
(ii) any offence not
within sub-paragraph (i) committed in connection with that infringement or
passing off, being an offence involving fraud or dishonesty;
(b) in the case of proceedings within paragraph (2)(c), any offence revealed by the facts on which the plaintiff
relies in those proceedings;
“related penalty”, in relation to any proceedings to
which paragraph (1) applies means –
(a) in the case of
proceedings within paragraph (2)(a) or (b), any penalty incurred in
respect of anything done or omitted in connection with the infringement or
passing off to which those proceedings relate;
(b) in the case of proceedings within paragraph (2)(c), any penalty incurred in respect of any act or omission
revealed by the facts on which the plaintiff relies in those proceedings.
reference in this Article to civil proceedings in the Royal Court of any
description includes a reference to proceedings on appeal arising out of such
10 Proof of
statements contained in documents
Where a statement contained in a document is admissible as evidence,
it may be proved –
the production of that document; or
or not that document is still in existence, by the production of a copy of that
document (however many copies away from the original) or of the material part
authenticated in such manner as the court may approve.
11 Proof of records
of business or public authority
document which is shown to form part of the records of a business or public
authority may be received in evidence without further proof.
document shall be taken to form part of the records of a business or public
authority if there is produced to the court a certificate to that effect signed
by an officer of the business or authority to which the records belong.
the purposes of paragraph (2) –
document purporting to be a certificate signed by an officer of a business or
public authority shall be deemed to have been duly given by such an officer and
signed by the officer; and
certificate shall be treated as signed by a person if it purports to bear a
facsimile of the person’s signature.
absence of an entry in the records of a business or public authority may be
proved by affidavit of an officer of the business or authority to which the
court may, having regard to the circumstances of the case, direct that all or
any of the provisions of this Article do not apply in relation to a particular
document or record, or description of documents or records.
this Article –
“business” includes any activity regularly carried on
over a period of time, whether for profit or not, by any body (whether
corporate or not) or by an individual;
“officer” includes any person occupying a responsible
position in relation to the relevant activities of the business or public
authority or in relation to its records; and
“public authority” includes any public or parochial
authority, statutory undertaking, States department and person holding office
under the States or under Her Majesty;
“records” means records in whatever form.
12 Rules of Court
power of the Royal Court to make Rules of Court under Article 13 of the
Royal Court (Jersey) Law 1948 shall include power to make
such provision as may be necessary or expedient for carrying this Law into
of Court made for the purposes of this Law in relation to proceedings in the
Royal Court shall apply to proceedings under the Arbitration (Jersey)
Law 1998 –
in so far as their operation is excluded by agreement; and
to such modifications as may be appropriate.
question arising as to what modifications are appropriate shall be determined,
in default of agreement, by the arbitrator.
in this Law affects the exclusion of evidence on grounds other than that it is
hearsay, whether the evidence falls to be excluded in pursuance of any
enactment or rule of law or for failure to comply with Rules of Court or an
order of the court, or otherwise.
in this Law affects the proof of documents by means other than those specified
in Article 10 or 11.
This Law may be cited as the Civil Evidence (Jersey) Law 2003.