Saturday, September 8, 2012

Judicial Affidavit Rule

Starting January 1, 2013, all courts in the Philippines will adopt the rule on judicial affidavit. Supreme Court Administrative Matter No. 12-8-8-SC or the Judicial Affidavit Rule aims to address the problem of congestion and delays in most courts arising from so many cases filed each year and how slow the courts are in resolving them. This can be achieved by reducing the time needed for completing the testimonies of witnesses.

As such, the new rule requires parties to file with the court and serve on the adverse party, not later than five days before the pre-trial or preliminary conference or the scheduled hearing of a motion, the judicial affidavits of their witnesses which shall take the place of such witnesses' direct testimonies, including the documentary or object evidences to be attached and marked as exhibits.

The judicial affidavit shall also have a sworn attestation at the end by the lawyer who conducted or supervised the examination of the witness. The lawyer will attest that he recorded the question and answer, and that nobody coached the witness regarding the latter's answers.

The entire rule can be read at the Supreme Court website: http://sc.judiciary.gov.ph/admin%20matters/others/A.M.%20No.%2012-8-8-SC.pdf

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