EVIDENCE BY DEPOSITION: EXAMINERS OF THE COURT
—(1) The Court may, in any cause or matter where it appears necessary for the purposes of justice, make an order in Form 73 for the examination on oath before a Judge or the Registrar or some other person, at any place, of any person.
(2) An order under paragraph (1) may be made on such terms (including, in particular, terms as to the giving of discovery before the examination takes place) as the Court thinks fit.
—(1) Where the person in relation to whom an order under Rule 1 is required is out of the jurisdiction, an application may be made —
for an order in Form 74 under that Rule for the issue of a letter of request to the judicial authorities of the country in which that person is to take, or cause to be taken, the evidence of that person; or
if the government of that country allows a person in that country to be examined before a person appointed by the Court, for an order in Form 75 under that Rule appointing a special examiner to take the evidence of that person in that country.
(2) An application may be made for the appointment as special examiner of a Singapore consul in the country in which the evidence is to be taken or his deputy —
if there subsists with respect to that country a Civil Procedure Convention providing for the taking of the evidence of any person in that country for the assistance of proceedings in the High Court; or
with the consent of the Minister.
(3) An application under this Rule can only be made in the High Court even if the proceedings are commenced in the Subordinate Courts.
—(1) Where an order is made under Rule 2 for the issue of a letter of request to the judicial authorities of a country to take, or cause to be taken, the evidence of any person in that country, paragraphs (2) to (6) shall apply.
(2) The party obtaining the order must prepare the letter of request and file it in the Registry, and the letter must be in Form 76 with such variations as the order may require.
(3) If the evidence of the person to be examined is to be obtained by means of written questions, there must be filed with the letter of request a copy of the interrogatories and cross-interrogatories to be put to him on examination.
(4) Unless the official language, or one of the official languages of the country in which the examination is to be taken is English, each document filed under paragraph (2) or (3) must be accompanied by a translation of the document in the official language of that country or, if there is more than one official language of that country, in any one of those languages which is appropriate to the place in that country where the examination is to be taken.
(5) Every translation filed under paragraph (4) must be certified by the person making it to be a correct translation; and the certificate must contain a statement of that person’s full name, of his address and of his qualifications for making the translation.
(6) The party obtaining the order must, when he files in the Registry the documents mentioned in paragraphs (2) to (5), also file in the Registry an undertaking in Form 77 signed by him or his solicitor to be responsible personally for all expenses incurred by the Minister in respect of the letter of request and, on receiving due notification of the amount of those expenses, to pay that amount to the office of that Minister and to produce a receipt for the payment to the proper officer of the Registry.
4. Where an order has been made under Rule 1 —
for the examination of any person before the Registrar or some other person (referred to in this Rule and Rules 5 to 14 as the examiner); or
for the cross-examination before the examiner of any person who has made an affidavit which is to be used in any cause or matter,
the attendance of that person before the examiner and the production by him of any document at the examination may be enforced by subpoena in like manner as the attendance of a witness and the production by a witness of a document at a trial may be enforced.
—(1) If any person, having been duly summoned by subpoena to attend before the examiner, refuses or fails to attend or refuses to be sworn for the purpose of the examination or to answer any lawful question or produce any document therein, a certificate of his refusal or failure, signed by the examiner, must be filed in the Registry, and upon the filing of the certificate the party by whom the attendance of that person was required may apply to the Court for an order requiring that person to attend, or to be sworn or to answer any question or produce any document, as the case may be.
(2) An application for an order under this Rule may be made ex parte.
(3) If the Court makes an order under this Rule it may order the person against whom the order is made to pay any costs occasioned by his refusal or failure.
(4) A person who wilfully disobeys any order made against him under paragraph (1) is guilty of contempt of Court.
—(1) The examiner must give the party on whose application the order for examination was made a notice appointing the place and time at which, subject to any application by the parties, the examination shall be taken, and such time shall, having regard to the convenience of the persons to be examined and all the circumstances of the case, be as soon as practicable after the making of the order.
(2) The party to whom a notice under paragraph (1) is given must, on receiving it, forthwith give notice of the appointment to all the other parties.
7. The party on whose application the order for examination before the examiner was made must furnish the examiner with copies of such of the documents in the cause or matter as are necessary to inform the examiner of the questions at issue in the cause or matter.
—(1) Subject to any directions contained in the order for examination —
any person ordered to be examined before the examiner may be cross-examined and re-examined; and
the examination, cross-examination and re-examination of persons before the examiner shall be conducted in like manner as at the trial of a cause or matter.
(2) The examiner may put any question to any person examined before him as to the meaning of any answer made by that person or as to any matter arising in the course of the examination.
(3) The examiner may, if necessary, adjourn the examination from time to time.
9. The examiner may, with the written consent of all the parties to the cause or matter, take the examination of any person in addition to those named or provided for in the order for examination, and must annex such consent to the original deposition of that person.
—(1) If any person being examined before the examiner objects to answer any questions put to him, or if objection is taken to any such question, that question, the ground for the objection and the answer to any such question to which objection is taken must be set out in the deposition of that person or in a statement annexed thereto.
(2) The validity of the ground for objecting to answer any such question or for objecting to any such question shall be decided by the Court and not by the examiner, but the examiner must state to the parties his opinion thereon, and the statement of his opinion must be set out in the deposition or in a statement annexed thereto.
(3) If the Court decides against the person taking the objection, it may order him to pay the costs occasioned by his objection.
—(1) The deposition of any person examined before the examiner shall be recorded under Order 38A, Rule 1(1) but, subject to paragraph (2) and Rule 10(1), the deposition taken under Order 38A, Rule 1(1)(b) need not set out every question and answer so long as it contains as nearly as may be the statement of the person examined.
(2) The examiner may direct the exact words of any particular question and the answer thereto to be set out in the deposition if that question and answer appear to him to have special importance.
(3) [Deleted by S 310/2005]
(4) The official record of hearing or transcript of the official record of hearing, as the case may be, authenticated by the signature of the examiner before whom it was taken, must be sent by the examiner to the Registry and shall be filed therein.
12. Before sending any deposition to the Registry, the examiner must endorse on the deposition a statement signed by him of the time occupied in taking the examination and the fees to be paid in respect thereof.
13. The examiner may make a special report to the Court with regard to any examination taken before him and with regard to the absence or conduct of any person thereat, and the Court may direct such proceedings to be taken, or make such order, on the report as it thinks fit.
—(1) If the fees and expenses due to an examiner are not paid, he may report that fact to the Court, and the Court may make an order against the party, on whose application the order for examination was made, to pay the examiner the fees and expenses due to him in respect of the examination.
(2) An order under this Rule shall not prejudice any determination on the taxation of costs or otherwise as to the party by whom the costs of the examination are ultimately to be borne.
—(1) Witnesses shall not be examined to perpetuate testimony unless an action has been begun for the purpose.
(2) Any person who would under the circumstances alleged by him to exist become entitled, upon the happening of any future event, to any honour, title, dignity or office, or to any estate or interest in any real or personal property, the right or claim to which cannot be brought to trial by him before the happening of such event, may begin an action to perpetuate any testimony which may be material for establishing such right or claim.
(3) No action to perpetuate the testimony of witnesses shall be set down for trial.