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Chapter

Cover Cross & Tapper on Evidence

XIII. Hearsay in civil proceedings  

This chapter discusses the hearsay rule in the context of civil proceedings. It begins with a consideration of Section 1 of the Civil Evidence Act 1995 (CEA). Doubts have been raised as to whether the Act is compatible with the ECHR, and on any basis, there are procedural differences between the methods of adducing different forms of hearsay under the provisions of the act. Consideration of the effect of the act in changing the law thus constitutes the first, and more important, section of this chapter. The chapter then turns to how the provisions of the act indicate that some of the existing rules relating to the admissibility of hearsay in civil proceedings remain in force.

Chapter

Cover Murphy on Evidence

11. The rule against hearsay II  

Common law and statutory exceptions

This chapter discusses the statutory exceptions to the inadmissibility of hearsay evidence in criminal cases that were created by the Criminal Justice Act 2003. The impact of the Human Rights Act 1998 on the admissibility of hearsay evidence is discussed, including the important cases of Horncastle and Al-Khawaja and Tahery v United Kingdom, where the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights came into conflict over whether an accused may be convicted where the ‘sole and decisive’ evidence against him is hearsay. The common law exceptions preserved by the Criminal Justice Act 2003 are then considered—res gestae. The chapter ends with discussion of the abolition of hearsay in civil proceedings by the Civil Evidence Act 1995.

Chapter

Cover The Modern Law of Evidence

13. Hearsay admissible by statute in civil proceedings  

Under the common law rule against hearsay, any assertion, other than one made by a person while giving oral evidence in the proceedings, was inadmissible if tendered as evidence of the facts asserted. The Civil Evidence Act 1968 constituted a major assault upon the common law rule in civil proceedings by making provisions for the admissibility of both oral and written hearsay subject to certain conditions. In June 1988 the Civil Justice Review recommended an inquiry by a law reform agency into the usefulness of the hearsay rule in civil proceedings and the machinery for rendering it admissible. The subsequent recommendations of the Law Commission were put into effect by the Civil Evidence Act 1995. This chapter discusses the admissibility of hearsay under the Civil Evidence Act 1995; safeguards; proof of statements contained in documents; evidence formerly admissible at common law; and Ogden tables.

Chapter

Cover Murphy on Evidence

12. The rule against hearsay III  

Admissions and confessions

Admissions and confessions are the most important common law exceptions to the rule against hearsay. Section 118(1) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 preserves any rule of law relating to the admissibility of admissions made by agents in criminal proceedings. This chapter is divided into two parts, the first of which discusses admissions, covering the principles of admissibility; what admissions may bind a party; and what may be proved by admission. The second part deals with confessions, covering the admissibility of confessions; the exclusion of confessions; evidence yielded by inadmissible confessions; excluded confessions as relevant non-hearsay evidence; confessions by the mentally handicapped and those otherwise impaired; the Codes of Practice and the discretionary exclusion of confessions; the use of confessions by co-accused; confessions implicating co-accused; and partly adverse (‘mixed’) statements.

Chapter

Cover Evidence

11. Hearsay Evidence  

Chapter 11 discusses the law on hearsay evidence. It covers the admissibility of hearsay evidence in civil proceedings, now governed by the Civil Evidence Act 1995; other proceedings in which the hearsay rule is inapplicable; and the admissibility of hearsay evidence in criminal proceedings.

Chapter

Cover The Modern Law of Evidence

23. Admissibility of previous verdicts  

This chapter examines the circumstances in which a verdict is admissible in subsequent proceedings as evidence of the facts on which it was based. It analyses the rule in Hollington v Hewthorn & Co Ltd, which has been widely criticized, that judgments are not admissible as evidence of the facts on which they are based. Its effect, in both civil and criminal proceedings, has been largely removed by the Civil Evidence Act 1968 and the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, respectively. Concerning civil proceedings, consideration is given to previous convictions generally, previous convictions in defamation proceedings, previous findings of adultery and paternity, previous acquittals, and other previous findings. Concerning criminal proceedings, consideration is given to previous convictions of the accused, previous convictions of persons other than the accused, and previous acquittals.

Chapter

Cover Evidence

Introductory remarks on the law of evidence  

Titles in the Core Text series take the reader straight to the heart of the subject, providing focused, concise, and reliable guides for students at all levels. This introductory chapter discusses the origins of a ‘law of evidence’ and the properties of the law of evidence. The law of evidence is rapidly evolving and, particularly in criminal cases, the Criminal Procedure Rules have transformed the environment within which they operate. Since it determines the critical issue of which particular items of proof parties are permitted to produce before a court in support of their contentions, it would be hard to exaggerate the subject’s importance and relevance.

Chapter

Cover Evidence

10. Character Evidence  

Chapter 10 begins with a discussion of the relevance of evidence of character. It then deals with the admissibility of character evidence in civil and criminal proceedings. In civil cases, the admissibility of evidence of a party’s bad character is governed simply by the test of relevance. In criminal proceedings, the entitlement of a defendant to a direction on the significance of his or her good character is taken seriously. The Criminal Justice Act 2003 now provides a comprehensive statement of the law on evidence of bad character in criminal proceedings.