Presentation on theme: "Preliminary Conference and Trial on the Issues"— Presentation transcript:
1 Preliminary Conference and Trial on the Issues Rules 22 and 24Atty. Victor P. Lazatin
2 Technical Working Group MembersConsultants:Hon. Roberto A. AbadAtty. Victor P. LazatinHon. Raul Bautista VillanuevaAtty. Vicente M. JoyasHon. Selma P. AlarasAtty. Laurence ArroyoHon. Caridad Walse-LuteroAtty. Roberto MendozaHon. Jose Lorenzo R. Dela RosaAtty. Emily ManuelHon. Maria Rowena Modesto San PedroHon. Marjorie T. Uyengco-NolascoHon. Barbara-Aleli H. Briones
3 OUTLINEPreliminary Conference (Rule 22)Trial of Issues(Rule 24)
4 JUDICIAL AFFIDAVITS AND DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE OVERVIEWINITIATORY PLEADINGSUMMONSANSWER/REPLY/OTHER PLEADINGSJUDICIAL AFFIDAVITS AND DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCESec. 22.2TERMS OF REFERENCESec. 22.4PRELIMINARY CONFERENCESecsTRIAL OF ISSUESJUDGMENTAPPEALEXECUTIONJDR(Failed)`Rule 22Rule 24
5 I. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE POLICY OBJECTIVESRequire parties to make a full disclosure of known facts and to submit the affidavits and documents that evidence their claims (GOAL: To enable the court to accurately identify the issues)2. Treat litigations as a collective effort (not adversarial) to search for truth and to render justice to all
6 I. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE POLICY OBJECTIVESEmpower the judge to take a direct role in examining the witnessesEfficient use of the court’s time without sacrificing quality—Parties/Counsel to do certain things such as(1) Drafting TOR; and (2) Drafting Decision5. Raise level of professionalism of court and counsel
7 I. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE KEY FEATURESMandatory disclosure of evidence (Sec. 22.2)Judicial Affidavit Rule (JAR): Judicial Affidavit as Direct testimony of a witnessDocuments and object evidence attached and marked as Exhibits C, C-1, C-2, and so on (Complainant), Exhibits P, P-1, P-2, and so on (Plaintiff or Petitioner), Exhibits R-1, R-2, R-3, and so on (Respondent), Exhibits D, D-1, D-2, and so on (Defendant) in the Judicial Affidavit shall be deemed offered and admitted **Reply Judicial Affidavits on matters not touched upon by initial Judicial Affidavit within 15 days from receipt of adverse party’s Judicial Affidavits.** Subject to exclusion / cross-examination
8 I. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE KEY FEATURES2. Use of discovery procedures (Sec. 22.3)3. Terms of Reference (Sec. 22.4)Raffle to a Different Branch/Joint Motion to Retain JDR Judge (Sec. 22.2)Appearance of parties (Sec. 22.6)Non-appearance excused only for valid cause shown or if represented by another fully authorized to act
9 I. PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE KEY FEATURESDecision by default (Secs to 22.8)For failure to appear at the scheduled preliminary conference, decision on the other party’s claims will be based solely on the evidence already submittedMatters to be taken up (Sec. 22.9)
10 CONTROLS SCOPE OF TRIAL Terms of ReferenceTERMS OF REFERENCESummary of admitted factsSummary of totality of facts that the evidence (Petitioners’ and Respondents’) appear to have establishedStatement of factual issue(s)List of witnessesStatement of actual or potential legal issues that the case presentsCONTROLS SCOPE OF TRIAL
11 Terms of Reference (“TOR”) PROCEDUREA. If both parties submitB. If Petitioner does not submitPETITIONER SUBMITS DRAFT TORCOURT TO DIRECT RESPONDENT TO SUBMIT DRAFT TOR15 DAYSRESPONDENT SUBMITS Draft COMMENTCOURT FINALIZES TOR ON THE BASIS OF RESPONDENT’S DRAFT15 DAYSCOURT FINALIZES TOR
12 MATTERS TO BE TAKEN UP AT THE PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE Determine (in consultation with the parties and their counsel) if there is a need to make changes in the contents or wordings of the Terms of Reference. If yes, the court shall enter those changes on the face of the documents.If a party insists that the court try an excluded issue = included, provided such party makes a deposit of P10,000-50,0000 for court costs.
13 MATTERS TO BE TAKEN UP AT THE PRELIMINARY CONFERENCE Final attempt to persuade the parties to settle theirdisputes amicably.The court shall summarize the arrangements in the Preliminary Conference and issue an Order of Trial, copy furnished the parties.May render judgment or cause dismissal of action should a valid ground for the same exists. If evidence is required for adjudicating a ground for dismissal, court shall set case for reception of such evidence.
14 ORDER OF TRIALTrial of the Issues and not Plaintiff’s or Defendant’s entire caseFix order in which issues are to be triedIdentify witnesses who need to be present and testify on such issuesSet specific dates for reception of evidenceDetermine whether regular or simple trialWitness exemption from face-to-face examination—(1) Rule on Examination of Child Witness; and (2)one who is mentally, psychologically, or physically challenged or disadvantaged in a face-to-face confrontation
15 POLICY CONSIDERATIONS II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIALPOLICY CONSIDERATIONSPromote a non-adversarial environmentGive the judge a more active role in the proceedingsIssue-based examination of witnesses and presentation of evidenceEqual time for witnesses from opposing sides to give testimony and reply to each other immediately5. Avoid unnecessary delays (e.g.,objections, postponements, etc.)
16 WHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6) II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIALWHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6)a) Court shall actively examine and determine the truthfulness of the judicial affidavits;b) Witnesses from all contending sides shall appear together and simultaneously swear to the truth of their respective testimonies;c) Witnesses shall sit face-to-face around the table in a non-adversarial environment and answer questions from the court and the parties’ counsel respecting the factual issue under consideration;
17 WHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6) II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIALWHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6)The court shall initiate the inquiry into each factual issue strictly in the sequence provided in the Order of Trial although such inquiry may cover two or more closely related issues;e) Witness or witnesses may testify on one or more issues in accordance with the Order of Trial;
18 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIALWHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6) f) Only one person at a time shall speak during the trial and always with prior permission from the court which shall take steps to ensure that the person who speaks is identified for the record; (grounds: rules of civility/courtesy); g) Witnesses shall address their answers to the examining judge or counsel;
19 WHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6) II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIALWHAT IT REQUIRES (Secs. 24.3, 24.4,24.5, 24.6)Witnesses shall not pose questions to the other witnesses relating to their testimonies but shall be given equal opportunity and equal time to respond to the same; andEach party shall have take turns to cross examine, redirect, and re-cross the witnesses.Not Face-to-Face trial (Sec )Rule on Examination of Child Witness; andA person who is mentally, psychologically, or physically challenged, or has a similar condition that puts him at a disadvantage in a face-to-face confrontation
20 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIAL KEY FEATURES Language used during trial (Sec )English or FilipinoIf there is language difficulty, conducted in a dialect known to him with interpreter.It is the recording of the actual answers (not the English or Filipino translation), which will be the official and binding testimony of the witness.
21 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIAL KEY FEATURES 2. Exclusion of disqualified witness or inadmissibletestimonies and exhibits from judicial affidavits before examination (Sec. 24.4)If granted, excluded answer will be placed in brackets under the initials of proper court personnel.If exhibits to be excluded are voluminous, motion in writing before trial.Without prejudice to a tender of excluded evidence.
22 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIAL KEY FEATURES Two-phase examination of witnesses (Sec. 24.7)First: Examination by the Court [Sec. 24.7(a)]Second: Examination by Counsel [Sec. 24.7(g)]Examination of Expert Witnesses (Sec )Face-to-Face alsowith leave of court, expert may ask questions directed to the other party’s expert witness
23 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIAL KEY FEATURES Intransferrability of settings (Sec )Except on grounds of fortuitous event or serious illness otherwise waiver of appearance (parties & counsel).No motion for postponement or resetting on ground of serious illness shall be granted unless a medical certificate is presented stating illness of such gravity to prevent from attending at the scheduled hearing.Judge may require physician to appear or order another physician either government employed or retained by adverse party to verify the truth of the certification.If false, certifying physician shall be held in contempt of court; also the party & counsel, to the extent possible
24 II. FACE-TO-FACE TRIAL KEY FEATURES Consequences of failure to appear at trial (Sec )Counsel = waiver, trial will proceed, witnesses examined in the usual course as if procured by the courtWitness = judicial affidavit expungedRegular v. Simple Trial SchedulesMemorandum, oral argument and judgment (Sec )
25 DRAFT DECISION BY WINNING PARTY REGULAR TRIALIssues are complex or numerousSeveral witnesses or numerous pieces of evidence1 or more hearing dates#1MEMORANDA(15 days)(10 days from #1)ORAL ARGUMENT#2(90 days from #2)WRITTEN DECISION#3vs.SIMPLE TRIAL**Issues are simple and fewLimited witnesses/evidenceONE-TIME face-to-face hearing(right after hearing)ORAL ARGUMENT#1ORAL JUDGMENT(right after #1)#2DRAFT DECISION BY WINNING PARTY(15 days from #2)#3(30 days from #2)WRITTEN DECISION#4**Conversion to Regular trial if it turns out to be complex
26 TWO-PHASE EXAMINATION BY THE COURTNo particular sequence on the issues/related issues at handCourt may direct question to one or more of the witnesses from contending sidesOther witnesses from the same side may supplement, clarify or qualify answer of first witnessEqual time and opportunity to replyAllow divergent exchanges provided new facts or new arguments are introduced; stop when repetitive/judge is sufficiently clarifiedCOURT MAY SUMMARIZE respective positions, then move onBY COUNSEL(may examine on the sameissue or related issues in the 1st phase)Unless court orders otherwise, sequence is:Petitioner’s WitnessCX/RD/RX –on the JudicialAffidavit & Answer in the 1st phaseRespondent’s WitnessCX/RD/RXOther Parties’ WitnessesCounsel may object to questions ormove to strike out answers givenCourt shall act on the objections orsimply note them
27 EXAMINATION OF WITNESSES JUDGE ASKS QUESTION 1 to WITNESS RMR. R answers JUDGEwith Court’s permission,MR. P replieswith Court’s permission,MR. R rebutswith Court’s permission,MR. P rejoinsJUDGE MAY SUMMARIZEWITNESS PWITNESS RJUDGE ASKS QUESTION 2 to WITNESS PMR. P answers JUDGEwith Court’s permission,MR. R replieswith Court’s permission,MR. P rebutswith Court’s permission,MR. R answersJUDGE MAY SUMMARIZE
28 TABLE OF OBJECTIONS/EXCEPTIONS EXCEPTIONS – Questions of the JudgeOBJECTIONS – Questions of the Counsel **--simply state the legal grounds for objection w/no further explanationTYPE of OBJECTIONOBJECTIONS TOCOURT ACTIONObjection as to formQuestions which are perceived as:1) argumentative;2) leading;3) multiple;3) repetitive;4) vague;5) impropercharacterization;6) confusing; or7) unfair.The court may:1) take note; or2) rephrase thequestion.** May also move to strike out answers given
29 TABLE OF OBJECTIONS/EXCEPTIONS TYPE of OBJECTIONOBJECTIONS TOCOURT ACTIONObjection as to substanceQuestions which are perceived to elicit answers that are inadmissible on public policy grounds such as:right against self-incrimination;privileged communication;disqualification;Statue of Frauds;2) rape shield law;3) bank secrecy laws;AMLA non-disclosure rule; or5) other similar laws orrules.The court shall promptly rule on such objections.
30 TABLE OF OBJECTIONS/EXCEPTIONS TYPE of OBJECTIONOBJECTIONS TOCOURT ACTIONObjection as to admissibilityAdmissibility under the rules governing:1) best evidence;2) parol evidence;3) conclusion or opinionevidence;4) hearsay evidence;5) irrelevant evidence; or6) character evidence.The court may simply take note of the exceptions and consider the same when deciding the case.