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Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China (For Trial Implementation)

Date Issued: 03-08-1982 Effective Date: 10-01-1982

Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China

Date Issued: 04-09-1991 Effective Date: 04-09-1991
Part ONE General Provisions
CHAPTER I The Aim and Basic Principles CHAPTER I The Aim, Scope of Application and Basic Principles
Article 1 The Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China is formulated on the basis of the constitution and in the light of the actual conditions of our country and its experience in trying civil cases. Article 1 The Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China is formulated on the basis of the Constitution and in the light of the experience and actual conditions of our country in the trial of civil cases.
Article 2 The aim of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China is to ensure that the people's courts ascertain facts, distinguish right from wrong, apply the law correctly, try civil cases promptly, affirm the rights and duties in civil affairs, impose sanctions for civil wrongs, protect the rights and interest of the state, collectives and individuals, and educate citizens to voluntarily abide by the law. Article 2 The Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China aims to protect the exercise of the litigation rights of the parties and ensure the ascertaining of facts by the people's courts, distinguish right from wrong, apply the law correctly, try civil cases promptly, affirm civil rights and obligations, impose sanctions for civil wrongs, protect the lawful rights and interests of the parties, educate citizens to voluntarily abide by the law, maintain the social and economic order, and guarantee the smooth progress of the socialist construction.
Article 3 All those who engage in civil lawsuits within the territory of the People's Republic of China must abide by this Law.
The provisions of this Law are applicable to administrative cases that by law are to be tried by the people's courts.
Article 4 Whoever engages in civil litigation within the territory of the People's Republic of China must abide by this Law.
Article 4 The people's courts shall exercise the judicial authority with respect to civil cases.
The people's courts shall try civil cases independently, in accordance with the law, and shall not be subject to interference by any administrative organ, public organization or individual.
Article 6 The people's courts shall exercise judicial powers with respect to civil cases.
The people's courts shall try civil cases independently in accordance with the law, and shall be subject to no interference by any administrative organ, public organization or individual.
Article 5 In conducting civil proceedings, the people's courts must base themselves on facts and take the law as the criterion; the law applies equally to all parties to a lawsuit; and the parties shall be guaranteed equal exercise of their litigation rights. Article 7 In trying civil cases, the people's courts must base themselves on facts and take the law as the criterion.

      Article 8 The parties in civil litigation shall have equal litigation rights. The people's courts shall, in conducting the trials, safeguard their rights, facilitate their exercising the rights, and apply the law equally to them.
Article 6 In conducting civil proceedings, the people's courts shall stress conciliation; if conciliation efforts are ineffective, they shall render judgments without delay. Article 9 In trying civil cases, the people's courts shall conduct conciliation for the parties on a voluntary and lawful basis; if conciliation fails, judgments shall be rendered without delay.
Article 7 In handling civil cases, the people's courts shall, wherever necessary and possible, send out circuit tribunals to conduct trials on the spot.
Article 8 In trying civil cases, the people's courts shall, as provided for by law, apply the system whereby the second hearing is final, and the systems of public trial, collegial panel and withdrawal of judicial personnel. Article 10 In trying civil cases, the people's courts shall, according to the provisions of the law, follow the systems of panel hearing, withdrawal, public trial and the court of second instance being that of last instance.
Article 9 Citizens of all nationalities shall have the right to use their native spoken and written languages in civil proceedings.
Where people of a minority nationality live in a concentrated community or where a number of nationalities live together in one area, the people's courts shall conduct hearings and issue legal documents in the spoken and written languages commonly used by the local nationalities.
The people's courts shall provide translations for any party to the court proceedings who is not familiar with the spoken or written languages commonly used by the local nationalities.
Article 11 Citizens of all nationalities shall have the right to use their native spoken and written languages in civil proceedings.
Where minority nationalities live in aggregation in a community or where several nationalities live together in one area, the people's courts shall conduct hearings and issue legal documents in the spoken and written languages commonly used by the local nationalities.
The people's courts shall provide translations for any participant in the proceedings who is not familiar with the spoken or written languages commonly used by the local nationalities.
Article 10 The parties to a civil lawsuit shall have the right to argue about the issues in dispute. Article 12 Parties to civil actions are entitled in the trials by the people's courts to argue for themselves.
Article 11 The parties to a civil lawsuit shall be entitled, within the scope stipulated by law, to dispose of their rights in civil affairs and their litigation rights. Article 13 The parties are free to deal with their own civil rights and litigation rights the way they prefer within the scope provided by the law.
Article 12 The people's procuratorates shall have the right to exercise legal supervision over the civil proceedings of the people's courts. Article 14 The people's procuratorates shall have the right to exercise legal supervision over civil proceedings.
Article 13 If the civil rights and interests of the state, a collective or an individual have been infringed, a state organ, public organization, enterprise or institution may support the injured unit or individual to initiate legal action in a people's court. Article 15 Where an act has infringed upon the civil rights and interests of the State, a collective organization or an individual, any State organ, public organization, enterprise or institution may support the injured unit or individual to bring an action in a people's court.
Article 14 The people's conciliation committees shall be mass organizations to conciliate disputes among the people, which are to function under the guidance of the grass-roots people's governments and the basic people's courts.
A people's conciliation committee shall conduct its conciliation through peruasion and education in accordance with the provisions of law and the principle of voluntariness. The parties concerned shall execute the agreement reached upon in the conciliations; those who refuse a conciliation or those for whom a conciliation has failed may initiate legal action in a people's court.
If a people's conciliation committee violates any policies or laws in conciliating a case, a people's court shall make corrections.
Article 16 The people's conciliation committees shall be mass organizations to conduct conciliation of civil disputes under the guidance of the grass- roots level people's governments and the basic level people's courts.
The people's conciliation committee shall conduct conciliation for the parties according to the Law and on a voluntary basis. The parties concerned shall carry out the settlement agreement reached through conciliation; those who decline conciliation or those for whom conciliation has failed or those who have backed out of the settlement agreement may institute legal proceedings in a people's court.
If a people's conciliation committee, in conducting conciliation of civil disputes, acts contrary to the law, rectification shall be made by the people's court.
Article 15 The people's congresses of the national autonomous areas and their standing committees may formulate certain adoptive or supplementary provisions in accordance with the principles of the Constitution and this Law and with the specific circumstances of the local nationalities. Such provisions made by an autonomous region shall be reported to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for the record. The provisions made by an autonomous prefecture or autonomous county shall be submitted to the standing committee of the people's congress of the relevant autonomous region or province for approval and to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for the record. Article 17 The people's congresses of the national autonomous regions may formulate, in accordance with the Constitution and the principles of this Law, and in conjunction with the specific circumstances of the local nationalities, adaptive and supplementary provisions. Such provisions made by an autonomous region shall be submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for approval; those made by an autonomous prefecture or autonomous county shall be submitted to the standing committee of the people's congress of the relevant province or autonomous region for approval and to the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress for the record.
CHAPTER II Jurisdiction CHAPTER II Jurisdiction
Section 1 Jurisdiction by Level Section 1 Jurisdiction by Forum Level
Article 16 The basic people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over civil cases, unless otherwise stipulated in this Law. Article 18 The basic people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over civil cases, unless otherwise provided in this Law.
Article 17 The intermediate people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over the following civil cases:
(1) cases involving foreign interests; and
(2) cases that have major impact on the area under their jurisdiction.
Article 19 The intermediate people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over the following civil cases:
(1) major cases involving foreign element;
(2) cases that have major impact on the area under their jurisdiction; and
(3) cases as determined by the Supreme People's Court to be under the jurisdiction of the intermediate people's courts.
Article 18 The higher people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over civil cases that have major impact on the areas under their jurisdiction. Article 20 The high people's courts shall have jurisdiction as courts of first instance over civil cases that have major impact on the areas under their jurisdiction.
Article 19 The Supreme People's Court shall have jurisdiction as the court of first instance over the following civil cases:
(1) cases that have major impact on the whole country; and
(2) cases that it deems it should try.
Article 21 The Supreme People's Court shall have jurisdiction as the court of first instance over the following civil cases:
(1) cases that have major impact on the whole country; and
(2) cases that the Supreme People's Court deems it should try.
Section 2 Territorial Jurisdiction Section 2 Territorial Jurisdiction
Article 20 A civil lawsuit shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the defendant has his domicile; if the defendant's domicile is different from his residence, the lawsuit shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of his residence.
A civil lawsuit against an enterprise, institution, state organ or public organization shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the defendant unit is located.
Where the domiciles or residences of several defendants in one lawsuit fall under the jurisdiction of two or more people's courts, all of those people's courts shall have jurisdiction over the lawsuit.
Article 22 A civil lawsuit brought against a citizen shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the defendant has his domicile; if the place of the defendant's domicile is different from that of his habitual residence, the lawsuit shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place of his habitual residence.
A civil lawsuit brought against a legal person or any other organization shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the defendant has his domicile.
Where the domiciles or habitual residences of several defendants in the same lawsuit are in the areas under the jurisdiction of two or more people's courts, all of those people's courts shall have jurisdiction over the lawsuit.
Article 21 The civil lawsuits described below shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the plaintiff has his domicile; if a plaintiff's domicile is different from his residence, the lawsuit shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of his residence. The relevant lawsuits are:
(1) those brought by civilians against servicemen;
(2) those concerning the status of persons not residing in the People's Republic of China;
(3) those against persons who are undergoing rehabilitation through labour; and
(4) those against imprisoned persons.
Article 23 The civil lawsuits described below shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the plaintiff has his domicile; if the place of the plaintiff's domicile is different from that of his habitual residence, the lawsuit shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place of the plaintiff's habitual residence:
(1) those concerning personal status brought against persons not residing within the territory of the People's Republic of China;
(2) those concerning the personal status of persons whose whereabouts are unknown or who have been declared as missing;
(3) those brought against persons who are undergoing rehabilitation through labour; and
(4) those brought against persons who are in imprisonment.
Article 22 A lawsuit initiated over an infringing act shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the infringement took place. Article 29 A lawsuit brought on a tortious act shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the tort is committed or where the defendant has his domicile.
Article 23 A lawsuit initiated over a contract dispute shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the contract is performed or where it was signed. Article 24 A lawsuit brought on a contract dispute shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the defendant has his domicile or where the contract is performed.
Article 24 A lawsuit arising from railway, highway or water transport or through transport shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the administrative organ in charge of investigating and handling such disputes is located. Article 28 A lawsuit arising from a dispute over a railway, road, water, or air transport contract or over a combined transport contract shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place of dispatch or the place of destination or where the defendant has his domicile.
Article 25 A lawsuit arising from air transport shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the transport began, where it ended or where the contract was signed. Article 28 A lawsuit arising from a dispute over a railway, road, water, or air transport contract or over a combined transport contract shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place of dispatch or the place of destination or where the defendant has his domicile.
Article 26 A lawsuit concerning claims for damages caused by an aviation accident shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the accident took place or where the aircraft first landed after the accident. Article 30 A lawsuit brought on claims for damages caused by a railway, road, water transport or air accident shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the accident occurred or where the vehicle or ship first arrived after the accident or where the aircraft first landed after the accident, or where the defendant has his domicile.
Article 27 A lawsuit concerning claims for damages caused by a ship collision or any other maritime accident shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the injured ship first docked after the accident or where the ship af fault was detained or in the port area where the ship at fault is registered. Article 31 A lawsuit brought on claims for damages caused by a collision at sea or by any other maritime accident shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the collision occurred or where the ship in collision first docked after the accident or where the ship at fault was detained, or where the defendant has his domicile.
Article 28 A lawsuit concerning claims for maritime salvage shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the salvage took place or where the salvaged vessel first docked after the disaster. Article 32 A lawsuit instituted for expenses of maritime salvage shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the salvage took place or where the salvaged ship first docked after the disaster.
Article 29 In cases where the implementation of Articles 22 to 28 proves difficult, the provisions of Article 20 or 21 may be applied.
Article 30 The following cases shall be under the exclusive jurisdiction of the people's courts herein specified:
(1) A lawsuit initiated over real estate shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the real estate is located.
(2) A lawsuit concerning harbour operations shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the harbour is located.
(3) A lawsuit concerning a registration shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the registration office is located.
(4) A lawsuit concerning an inheritance shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the decedent had his domicile, of where the principal part of his estate is located.
Article 34 The following cases shall be under the exclusive jurisdiction of the people's courts herein specified:
(1) a lawsuit brought on a dispute over real estate shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the estate is located;
(2) a lawsuit brought on a dispute over harbour operations shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the harbour is located; and
(3) a lawsuit brought on a dispute over succession shall be under the jurisdiction of the people's court of the place where the decedent had his domicile upon his death, or where the principal part of his estate is located.
Article 31 When two or more people's courts have jurisdiction over a lawsuit, the plaintiff may bring by choice his lawsuit in one of these people's courts; if the plaintiff brings the lawsuit in two or more people's courts that have jurisdiction over the lawsuit, it shall be handled by the people's court that first receives the bill of complaint. Article 35 When two or more people's courts have jurisdiction over a lawsuit, the plaintiff may bring his lawsuit in one of these people's courts; if the plaintiff brings the lawsuit in two or more people's courts that have jurisdiction over the lawsuit, the people's court in which the case was first entertained shall have jurisdiction.
Section 3 Referral and Designation of Jurisdiction Section 3 Transfer and Designation of Jurisdiction
Article 32 If a people's court discovers that a case it has accepted is not under its jurisdiction, if shall refer the case to the people's court that does have jurisdiction over the case; the people's court to which a case has been referred shall not independently refer it again to another people's court. Article 36 If a people's court finds that a case it has entertained is not under its jurisdiction, it shall refer the case to the people's court that has jurisdiction over the case. The people's court to which a case has been referred shall entertain the case, and if it considers that, according to the relevant regulations, the case referred to it is not under its jurisdiction, it shall report to a superior people's court for the designation of jurisdiction and shall not independently refer the case again to another people's court.
Article 33 If a people's court which has jurisdiction over a case is unable to exercise the jurisdiction for special reasons, a superior people's court shall designate another court to exercise the jurisdiction.
In the event of a jurisdictional dispute, it shall be resolved by the disputing parties through consultation; if the disputes cannot be resolved through consultation, it shall be reported to a people's court superior to both disputing parties for the designation of jurisdiction.
Article 37 If a people's court which has jurisdiction over a case is unable to exercise the jurisdiction for special reasons, a superior people's court shall designate another court to exercise jurisdiction.
In the event of a jurisdictional dispute between two or more people's courts, it shall be resolved by the disputing parties through consultation; if the dispute cannot be so resolved, it shall be reported to their common superior people's court for the designation of jurisdiction.
Article 34 People's courts at higher levels shall have the authority to try civil cases over which people's courts at lower levels have jurisdiction as courts of first instance; they may also transfer civil cases over which they themselves have jurisdiction as courts of first instance to people's courts at lower levels for trial.
If a people's court deems it necessary for a civil case of first instance under its jurisdiction to be tried by a people's court at a higher level, it may request such a people's court to try the case.
Article 39 The people's courts at higher levels shall have the power to try civil cases over which the people's courts at lower levels have jurisdiction as courts of first instance; they may also transfer civil cases over which they themselves have jurisdiction as courts of first instance to people's courts at lower levels for trial.
If a people's court at a lower level that has jurisdiction over a civil case as court of first instance deems it necessary to have the case to be tried by a people's court at a higher level, it may submit it to and request the people's court at a higher level to try the case.
CHAPTER III Trial Organizations CHAPTER III Trial Organization
Article 35 Civil cases of first instance shall be tried in a people's court by a collegial panel consisting of both judges and assessors or of judges alone. The collegial panel must have an odd number of members.
Simple civil cases shall be tried by a single judge alone.
When carrying out their duties in a people's court, the assessors shall have equal rights with the judges.
Article 40 The people's court of first instance shall try civil cases by a collegial panel composed of both judges and judicial assessors or of judges alone.
The collegial panel must have an odd number of members.
Civil cases in which summary procedure is followed shall be tried by a single judge alone.
When performing their duties, the judicial assessors shall have equal rights and obligations as the judges.
Article 36 Civil cases of second instance shall be tried in a people's court by a collegial panel of judges. The collegial panel must have an odd number of members.
When retrying a case remanded by a people's court of second instance, the people's court of first instance shall form a new collegial panel in accordance with the procedures of first instance.
If a case for retrial was originally tried at first instance, a new collegial panel shall be formed according to the procedure of first instance; if the case was originally tried at second instance, a new collegial panel shall be formed according to the procedure of second instance.
Article 41 The people's court of second instance shall try civil cases by a collegial panel of judges. The collegial panel must have an odd number of members.
For the retrial of a remanded case, the people's court of first instance shall form a new collegial panel in accordance with the procedure of first instance.
If a case for retrial was originally tried at first instance, a new collegial panel shall be formed according to the procedure of first instance; if the case was originally tried at second instance or was brought by a people's court at a higher level to it for trial, a new collegial panel shall be formed according to the procedure of second instance.
Article 37 The president of the court or the chief judge of a division shall designate one member of the judicial personnel to serve as the presiding judge of the collegial panel; if the president or the chief judge participates in the trial, he himself shall serve as the presiding judge. Article 42 The president of the court or the chief judge of a division of the court shall designate a judge to serve as the presiding judge of the collegial panel; if the president or the chief judge participates in the trial, he himself shall serve as the presiding judge.
Article 38 When deliberating a case, a collegial panel shall observe the principle that the minority shall defer to the majority. The deliberations shall be recorded in writing, and the transcript shall be signed by the members of the collegial panel. Diverging opinions in the deliberations must be truthfully entered in the transcript. Article 43 When deliberating a case, a collegial panel shall observe the rule of majority. The deliberations shall be recorded in writing, and the transcript shall be signed by the members of the collegial panel.Dissenting opinions in the deliberations must be truthfully entered in the transcript.
Article 39 The president of the court shall submit major and difficult civil cases to the judicial committee for discussion and decision. The collegial panel must carry out the decisions of the judicial committee.
CHAPTER IV Withdrawal CHAPTER IV Withdrawal
Article 40 A member of the judicial personnel must voluntarily withdraw, and the parties to the case shall also have the right to request, orally or in writing, that he be withdrawn, in any of the following circumstances:
(1) if he is a party or a near relative of a party to the case;
(2) if he has a personal interest in the case; or
(3) if he has some other relationship with a party to the case that could influence the impartial handling of the case.
The above provisions shall also apply to clerks, interpreters and expert witnesses.
Article 45 A judicial officer shall of himself withdraw from the case, and the parties thereto shall be entitled to apply orally or in writing for his withdrawal in any of the following circumstances:
(1) he being a party to the case or a near relative of a party or an agent ad litem in the case;
(2) he being an interested party in the case; or
(3) he having some other kind of relationship with a party to the case, which might affect the impartiality of the trial.
The above provisions shall also apply to clerks, interpreters, expert witnesses and inspection personnel.
Article 41 When a party requests the withdrawal of a member of the judicial personnel, he shall explain the reason for this request and submit the request at the beginning of the proceedings; the request may also be submitted before the end of court debate if the reason for the withdrawal becomes known or occurs only after the beginning of the proceedings.
Personnel who have been requested to withdraw shall temporarily suspend their functions unless emergency measures are required by the case.
Article 46 In applying for the withdrawal, the party shall state the reason and submit the application at the beginning of the proceedings; the application may also be submitted before the closing of arguments in court if the reason for the withdrawal is known to him only after the proceedings begin.
Pending a decision by the people's court regarding the withdrawal applied for, the judicial officer concerned shall temporarily suspend his participation in the proceedings, with the exception, however, of cases that require the taking of emergency measures.
Article 42 The withdrawal of a court president who serves as the presiding judge shall be decided by the judicial committee; the withdrawal of judicial personnel shall be decided by the court president; the withdrawal of other personnel shall be decided by the presiding judge. Article 47 The withdrawal of the presiding judge who is president of the court shall be decided by the judicial committee; the withdrawal of judicial officers shall be decided by the court president; and the withdrawal of other personnel by the presiding judge.
Article 43 The decision of a people's court on a request for withdrawal may be made orally or in writing. if a party refuses to accept the decision, it may apply for one reconsideration. The trial of the case shall not be suspended during the time of reconsideration. Article 48 The decision of a people's court on an application made by any party for withdrawal shall be made orally or in writing within three days after the application was made. If the applicant is not satisfied with the decision, he may apply for reconsideration which could be granted only once. During the period of reconsideration, the person whose withdrawal has been applied for shall not suspend his participation in the proceedings. The decision of a people's court on the reconsideration shall be made within three days after receiving the application and the applicant shall be notified of it accordingly.
CHAPTER V Participants in Proceedings CHAPTER V Participants in Proceedings
Section 1 Parties Section 1 Parties
Article 44 Any person who has the capacity for litigation rights may become a party to a civil lawsuit.
Enterprises, institutions, state organs and public organizations may become parties to a civil lawsuit, and their principal leaders shall be their legal representatives.
Article 49 Any citizen, legal person and any other organization may become a party to a civil action.
Legal persons shall be represented by their legal representatives in the litigation. Other organizations shall be represented by their principal heads in the proceedings.
Article 45 The parties shall have the right to appoint agents request withdrawals, provide evidence, engage in debate, request conciliation, file an appeal and apply for execution.
With the permission of the people's court, the parties may consult the materials relating to the court proceedings of the case and may request that copies of the materials and other legal documents be made at their own expense. However, materials involving state secrets and the private affairs of individuals shall be exceptions.
The parties must exercise their litigation rights in accordance with the law, observe litigation procedures and carry out legally effective judgments, orders and conciliation agreements.
Article 50 Parties to an action shall have the right to appoint agents, apply for withdrawals, collect and provide evidence, proffer arguments, request conciliation, file an appeal and apply for execution.
Parties to an action may have access to materials pertaining to the case and make copies thereof and other legal documents pertaining to the case.
The scope of and rules for consulting and making copies of them shall be specified by the Supreme People's Court.
Parties to an action must exercise their litigation rights in accordance with the law, observe the procedures and carry out legally effective written judgments or orders and conciliation statements.
Article 46 The two parties may reach a compromise on their own. The plaintiff may relinquish or modify his claim. The defendant may confirm or repudiate the claim and shall have the right to file a counterclaim. Article 51 The two parties may reach a compromise of their own accord.

      Article 52 The plaintiff may relinquish or modify his claims. The defendant may admit or rebut the claims and shall have the right to file counterclaims.
Article 47 A joint lawsuit shall be constituted when one party or both parties consist of two or more persons and the object of their lawsuits are the same or of the same category and the people's court considers that the claims can be tried together.
If the individuals constituting a party to a joint lawsuit have identical rights and obligations with respect to the object of the lawsuit and the procedural acts of one person is recognized by the others of his party, then such acts shall be effective for all; if the individuals in one party do not have identical rights and obligations with respect to the object of the lawsuit, then the procedural acts of one person shall have no effect on the others of his party.
Article 53 When one party or both parties consist of two or more than two persons, their object of action being the same or of the same category and the people's court considers that, with the consent of the parties, the action can be tried combined, it is a joint action.
If a party of two or more persons to a joint action have common rights and obligations with respect to the object of action and the act of any one of them is recognized by the others of the party, such an act shall be valid for all the rest of the party; if a party of two or more persons have no common rights and obligations with respect to the object of action, the act of any one of them shall not be valid for the rest.
Article 48 If a third party considers that he has an independent claim to the object disputed by the parties to a lawsuit, he shall have the right to bring an action and become a party to the lawsuit.
If a third party has no independent claim to the object disputed by the parties to a lawsuit, but the outcome of the case will affect his interest legally, he may file a request to participate in the proceedings or may participate when so notified by the people's court.
Article 56 If a third party considers that he has an independent claim to the object of action of both parties, he shall have the right to bring an action.
Where the outcome of the case will affect a third party's legal interest, such party, though having no independent claim to the object of action of both parties, may file a request to participate in the proceedings or the people's court shall notify the third party to participate. A third party that is to bear civil liability in accordance with the judgment of the people's court shall be entitled to the rights and obligations of a party in litigation.
Section 2 Agents ad Litem Section 2 Agents ad Litem
Article 49 Any person with no capacity to engage in litigation shall have one or more agents ad litem to represent him in a lawsuit. The people's court may appoint an agent for any person who does not have an agent ad litem.
If the agents ad litem try to shift their responsibilities onto each other, the people's court may appoint one of them to represent the principal in litigation.
Article 57 Any person with no legal capacity to engage in litigation shall have his guardian or guardians as statutory agents to act for him in a lawsuit. If the statutory agents try to shift responsibility as agents ad litem upon one another, the people's court shall appoint one of them to represent the person in litigation.
Article 50 Each party, legal representative or agent ad litem may entrust one or two persons to represent him in litigation.
A party's near relative, a lawyer, a person recommended by a public organization or the unit to which a party belongs or any other citizen approved by the people's court may be entrusted as the party's agent ad litem.
Article 58 A party to an action, or statutory agent may appoint one or two persons to act as his agents ad litem.
A lawyer, a near relative of the party, a person recommended by a relevant social organization or a unit to which the party belongs or any other citizen approved by the people's court may be appointed as the party's agent ad litem.
Article 51 When a person entrusts another to act on his behalf in litigation, he must submit to the people's court a power of attorney bearing his signature or seal.
The power of attorney must specify the matter and limits of authority entrusted. An agent ad litem must possess special authorization from his principal to confirm, relinquish or modify the claim and to institute a compromise or file a counterclaim or an appeal.
A power of attorney issued by a Chinese citizen residing in a foreign country must be certified by the Chinese embassy or consulate in that country.
If there is no Chinese embassy or consulate in that country, the power of attorney must be certified by an overseas Chinese organization loyal to China.
Article 59 When a person appoints another to act on his behalf in litigation, he must submit to the people's court a power of attorney bearing his signature or seal.
The power of attorney must specify the matters entrusted and the powers conferred. An agent ad litem must obtain special powers from his principal to admit, waive or modify claims, or to compromise or to file a counterclaim or an appeal.
A power of attorney mailed or delivered through others by a citizen of the People's Republic of China residing abroad must be certified by the Chinese embassy or consulate accredited to that country. If there is no Chinese embassy or consulate in that country, the power of attorney must be certified by an embassy or a consulate of a third country accredited to that country that has diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China, and then transmitted for authentication to the embassy or consulate of the People's Republic of China accredited to that third country, or it must be certified by a local patriotic overseas Chinese organization.
Article 52 A party to a lawsuit shall inform the people's court in writing if he changes or revokes the authority of an agent ad litem, and the court shall notify the other party of the change or revocation. Article 60 A party to an action shall inform the people's court in writing if he changes or revokes the powers of an agent ad litem, and the court shall notify the other party of the change or revocation.
Article 53 A lawyer who serves as an agent ad litem may consult materials pertaining to the case in accordance with relevant stipulations. However, if such materials involve state secrets or the private affairs of individuals, he must keep the confidential information from his client and others. With the approval of the people's court, other agents ad lintem may also consult the materials relating to the court proceedings of the case, except those that involve state secrets or the private affairs of individuals. Article 61 A lawyer who serves as an agent ad litem and other agents ad litem shall have the right to investigate and collect evidence, and may have access to materials pertaining to the case. The scope of and rules for consulting materials pertaining to the case shall be specified by the Supreme People's Court.
Article 54 The parties to a divorce case which has been entrusted to agents ad litem shall appear in court in person, unless they are incapable of presenting their own case. A party who is truly unable to appear in court due to a special reason shall submit his or her opinion in writing to the people's court. Article 62 In a divorce case in which the parties to the action have been represented by their agents ad litem, the parties themselves shall still appear in court in person, unless they are incapable of expressing their own will. A party who is truly unable to appear in court due to a special reason shall submit his views in writing to the people's court.
CHAPTER VI Evidence CHAPTER VI Evidence
Article 55 Evidence shall be classified as follows:
(1) Documentary evidence;
(2) Material evidence;
(3) Audio-visual reference material;
(4) Testimony of witnesses;
(5) Statements of the parties;
(6) Expert conclusions; and
(7) Records of inquests.
Any of the above-mentioned evidence must be verified before it can be taken as a basis for ascertaining a fact.
Article 63 Evidence shall be classified as follows:
(1) documentary evidence;
(2) material evidence;
(3) audio-visual material;
(4) testimony of witnesses;
(5) statements of the parties;
(6) expert conclusions; and
(7) records of inspection.
The above-mentioned evidence must be verified before it can be taken as a basis for ascertaining a fact.
Article 56 A party shall have the responsibility to provide evidence in support of his own propositions.
The people's court shall, in accordance with the prescribed procedure, collect and examine evidence comprehensively and objectively.
Article 64 It is the duty of a party to an action to provide evidence in support of his allegations.
If, for objective reasons, a party and his agent ad litem are unable to collect the evidence by themselves or if the people's court considers the evidence necessary for the trial of the case, the people's court shall investigate and collect it.
The people's court shall, in accordance with the procedure prescribed by the law, examine and verify evidence comprehensively and objectively.
Article 57 The people's court shall have the authority to obtain evidence from the relevant units or individuals, and such units or individuals may not refuse to provide evidence.
The people's court shall verify and determine the validity of documentary evidence provided by state organs, public organizations, enterprises, institutions or individuals.
Article 65 The people's court shall have the right to make investigation and collect evidence from the relevant units or individuals; such units or individuals may not refuse to provide information and evidence.
The people's court shall verify the authenticity, examine and determine the validity of the certifying documents provided by the relevant units or individuals.
Article 58 The people's court shall keep confidential any evidence that involves state secrets or the private affairs of individuals. If such evidence must be shown to a party, the showing shall not take place in open court. Article 66 Evidence shall be presented in court and cross-examined by the parties concerned. But evidence that involves State secrets, trade secrets and personal privacy shall be kept confidential. If it needs to be presented in court, such evidence shall not be presented in an open court session.
Article 59 The people's court shall recognize the validity of notarized legal acts, facts and documents, except where there is contrary evidence sufficient to invalidate the notarial certification. Article 67 The people's court shall take the acts, facts and documents legalized by notarization according to legal procedures as the basis for ascertaining facts, unless there is evidence to the contrary sufficient to invalidate the notarization.
Article 60 Any document submitted as evidence must be the original one. Material evidence must also be original. If it is truly difficult to present the original document or material, then reproductions, photographs, duplicates or extracts of the original may be submitted.
If a document in a foreign language is submitted as evidence, a chinese translation must be appended.
Article 68 Any document submitted as evidence must be the original. Material evidence must also be original. If it is truly difficult to present the original document or thing, then reproductions, photographs, duplicates or extracts of the original may be submitted.
If a document in a foreign language is submitted as evidence, a Chinese translation must be appended.
Article 61 All persons who have information about a case shall have the obligation to give testimony in court. Responsible persons of relevant units shall encourage witnesses to give testimony. When it would be truly difficult for a witness to appear in court, he may submit a written testimony with the approval of the people's court.
Any person who is unable to express himself properly cannot testify.
Article 70 All units and individuals who have knowledge of a case shall be under the obligation of giving testimony in court. Responsible heads of the relevant units shall support the witnesses to give testimony. When it is truly difficult for a witness to appear in court, he may, with the consent of the people's court, submit a written testimony.
Any person who is incapable of expressing his will properly shall not give testimony.
Article 62 The people's court shall examine the statements of the parties in connection with the other evidence to determine whether the statements can be taken as a basis for ascertaining the facts.
The refusal of a party to make a statement shall not prevent the people's court from ascertaining the facts of a case on the basis of other evidence.
Article 71 The people's court shall examine the statements of the parties concerned in the light of other evidence in the case to determine whether the statements can be taken as a basis for ascertaining the facts.
The refusal of a party to make statements shall not prevent the people's court from ascertaining the facts of a case on the basis of other evidence.
Article 63 When the people's court needs to solve a specialized problem, the department concerned shall be obliged upon notification by the people's court to assign an expert to make an evaluation.
The expert witness shall have the right to consult the case materials necessary for the evaluation and direct inquiries to the parties and witnesses.
The expert witness shall present a written conclusion of his evaluation and affix his signature or seal to it, and the unit to which the expert witness belongs shall certify his status by affixing its official seal to the expert conclusion.
Article 72 When the people's court deems it necessary to make an expert evaluation of a problem of a technical nature, it shall refer the problem to a department authorized by the law for the evaluation. In the absence of such a department, the people's court shall appoint one to make the expert evaluation.
The authorized department and the experts designated by the department shall have the right to consult the case materials necessary for the evaluation and question the parties and witnesses when circumstances so require.
The authorized department and the experts it designated shall present a written conclusion of the evaluation duly sealed or signed by both. If the evaluation is made by an expert alone, the unit to which the expert belongs shall certify his status by affixing its seal to the expert's conclusion.
Article 64 When inspecting material evidence or a site, the inspector must show his credentials issued by a people's court. He shall request a local grass-roots organizations or the unit concerned to send persons to participate in the inquest. The party concerned or an adult relative of his shall be present; their refusal to appear on the scene shall not prevent the inquest from proceeding.
Upon notification by the people's court, the relevant units and individuals shall have the obligation to preserve the site and assist in the inquest.
In carrying out the inquest, the inspector may photograph and survey the material evidence or site and shall prepare a written record of the circumstances and results of the inquest. The inspector, the party and the requested participants shall affix their signatures or seals to the record.
Article 73 When inspecting material evidence or a site, the inspector must produce his credentials issued by a people's court. He shall request the local grass-roots organization or the unit to which the party to the action belongs to send persons to participate in the inspection. The party concerned or an adult member of his family shall be present; their refusal to appear on the scene, however, shall not hinder the inspection.
Upon notification by the people's court, the relevant units and individuals shall be under the obligation of preserving the site and assisting the inspection.
The inspector shall make a written record of the circumstances and results of the inspection, which shall be duly signed or sealed by the inspector, the party concerned and the participants requested to be present.
Article 65 Under circumstances where there is a likelihood that evidence may be destroyed or lost or difficult to obtain later on, the participants in proceedings may apply for the evidence to be preserved. The people's court may also on its own initiative take measures to preserve such evidence. Article 74 Under circumstances where there is a likelihood that evidence may be destroyed or lost, or difficult to obtain later, the participants in the proceedings may apply to the people's court for preservation of the evidence. The people's court may also on its own initiative take measures to preserve such evidence.
CHAPTER VII Time Periods and Service CHAPTER VII Time Periods and Service
Section 1 Time Periods Section 1 Time Periods
Article 66 Time periods shall include those prescribed by law and those designated by a people's court.
Time periods shall be calculated by the hour, the day, the month and the year. The hour and day from which a time period begins shall not be counted as within the time period.
If the expiration date of a time period falls on a holiday, then the day immediately following the holiday shall be regarded as the expiration date.
A time period shall not include travelling time. A litigation document that is mailed before a deadline shall not be regarded as overdue.
Article 75 Time periods shall include those prescribed by the law and those designated by a people's court.
Time periods shall be calculated by the hour, the day, the month and the year. The hour and day from which a time period begins shall not be counted as within the time period.
If the expiration date of a time period falls on a holiday, then the day immediately following the holiday shall be regarded as the expiration date.
A time period shall not include travelling time. A litigation document that is mailed before the deadline shall not be regarded as overdue.
Article 67 If a party fails to meet a deadline due to force majeure or for other legitimate reasons, he may apply for an extension of the time limit within 10 days after the obstacle is removed. The requested extension shall be subject to approval by a people's court. Article 76 In case of failure on the part of a party to an action to meet a deadline due to force majeure or for other justified reasons, the party concerned may apply for an extension of the time limit within 10 days after the obstacle is removed. The extension applied for shall be subject to approval by a people's court.
Section 2 Service Section 2 Service
Article 68 A receipt shall be required for every litigation document that is served and it shall bear the addressee's signature or seal and the date of receipt.
The date of receipt as signed by the addressee shall be regarded as the date the document is served.
Article 77 A receipt shall be required for every litigation document that is served and it shall bear the date of receipt noted by the signature or seal of the person on whom the document was served.
The date noted on the receipt by the person on whom the document was served shall be regarded as the date of service of the document.
Article 69 Litigation documents sent by a people's court shall be served directly on the addressee. If the addressee is absent, the documents shall be served on an adult member of his family living with him, who shall sign the receipt. If the addressee has designated an agent to receive his litigation documents and has informed the people's court of it, the documents may be served on the agent who shall then sign the receipt. Article 78 Litigation documents shall be sent or delivered directly to the person on whom they are to be served. If that person is a citizen, the documents shall, in case of his absence, be receipted by an adult member of his family living with him. If the person on whom they are to be served is a legal person or any other organization, the documents shall be receipted by the legal representatives of the legal person or the principal heads of the other organization or anyone of the legal person or the other organization responsible for receiving such documents; if the person on whom they are to be served has an agent ad litem, the documents may be receipted by the agent ad litem; if the person on whom they are to be served has designated a person to receive litigation documents on his behalf and has informed the people's court of it, the documents may be receipted by the person designated.
The date put down in the receipt and signed by the adult family member living with the person or whom the litigation documents are to be served, or by the person responsible for receiving documents of a legal person or any other organization, or by the agent ad litem, or the person designated to receive documents shall be deemed the date of service of the documents.
Article 70 If the addressee of a litigation document refuses to accept it, the person serving the document shall ask representatives from the relevant grass-roots organization or other people to the scene, explain the situation to them, and record on the receipt the particulars of the refusal and the date of it. After the person serving the document and the witnesses have affixed their signatures or seals to the receipt, the doucment shall be left at the residence of the addressee and the service shall be considered completed. Article 79 If the person on whom the litigation documents are to be served or the adult family member living with him refuses to receive the documents, the person serving the documents shall ask representatives from the relevant grass-roots organization or the unit to which the person on whom the documents are to be served belongs to appear on the scene, explain the situation to them, and record on the receipt the reasons of the refusal and the date of it. After the person serving the documents and the witnesses have affixed their signatures or seals to the receipt, the documents shall be left at the place where the person on whom they are to be served lives and the service shall be deemed completed.
Article 71 If the direct service of a litigation document proves difficult, service of the document may be entrusted to another people's court, or it may be served by post. If a document is served by post, the postmark on the receipt for registered mail shall be regarded as the date the document is served. Article 80 If direct service proves to be difficult, service of litigation documents may be entrusted to another people's court, or done by mail. If the documents are served by mail, the date stated on the receipt for postal delivery shall be deemed the date of service of the documents.
Article 72 If the addressee is in the military the document shall be forwarded to him by the political organ at or above the regimental level in the unit to which he belongs. Article 81 If the person on whom the litigation documents are to be served is a military-man, the documents shall be forwarded to him through the political organ of the unit at or above the regimental level in the force to which he belongs.
Article 73 If the addressee is undergoing imprisonment, the document shall be forwarded to him by the prison or unit of reform through labour where he is serving his term.
If the addressee is undergoing rehabilitation through labour, the document shall be forwarded to him by the unit supervising his rehabilitation through labour.
Article 82 If the person on whom the litigation documents are to be served is in imprisonment, the documents shall be forwarded to him through the prison authorities or the unit of reform through labour where the person is serving his term.
If the person on whom the litigation documents are to be served is undergoing rehabilitation through labour, the documents shall be forwarded to him through the unit of his rehabilitation through labour.
Article 74 Any organization or unit that receives a litigation document to be forwarded must immediately deliver it to the addressee, who shall sign the receipt. Article 83 The organization or unit that receives the litigation documents to be forwarded must immediately deliver them to and have them receipted by the person on whom they are to be served. The date stated on the receipt shall be deemed the date of service of the documents.
Article 75 If the whereabouts of an addressee is unknown, or if a document cannot be served on him by the other methods mentioned in this Chapter, the document shall be served by public announcement. Three months after the date of the public announcement, the document shall be deemed to have been served.
The reasons for service by public announcement and the procedures taken shall be recorded in the case files.
Article 84 If the whereabouts of the person on whom the litigation documents are to be served is unknown, or if the documents cannot be served by the other methods specified in this Section, the documents shall be served by public announcement. Sixty days after the public announcement is made, the documents shall be deemed to have been served.
The reasons for service by public announcement and the process gone through shall be recorded in the case files.
CHAPTER VIII Compulsory Measures Against Impairment of Civil Actions CHAPTER X Compulsory Measures Against Obstruction of Civil Proceedings
Article 76 If a defendant is required to appear in court but, having been served twice with a legal subpoena, still refuses to do so without justified reason, the people's court may summon him to court by a warrant. Article 100 If a defendant is required to appear in court, but, having been served twice with summons, still refuses to do so without justified reason, the people's court may constrain him to appear in court by a peremptory writ.
Article 77 If a participant in the proceedings or any other person commits any of the following acts, the people's court may, according to the seriousness of his offence, reprimand him, order him to sign a statement of repentance, fine him or detain him; if the offence constitutes a crime, the offender shall be investigated for criminal responsibility in accordance with law. These acts are:
(1) Forging, concealing or destroying evidence;
(2) Instigating or suborning others to commit perjury;
(3) Concealing, transferring, selling or destroying property that has been sealed up or distrained;
(4) Using violence, threats or other means to hinder judicial personnel from performing their duties or disrupt the working order of judicial organs;
(5) Insulting, slandering, incriminating with false charges or beating up judicial workers, witnesses, expert witnesses, inspectors, participants in proceedings or personnel who assist in execution or using other means to retaliate against them;
(6) Evading without reason, refusing to assist, or obstructing the execution of a judgment or order according to a notice of a people's court to assist in the execution by the person who has been notified and has the obligation to do so.
Article 102 If a participant or any other person in the proceedings commits any one of the following acts, the people's court shall, according to the seriousness of the act, impose a fine on him or detain him; if the act constitutes a crime, the offender shall be investigated for criminal responsibility according to law.
(1) forging or destroying important evidence, which would obstruct the trial of a case by the people's court;
(2) using violence, threats or subordination to prevent a witness from giving testimony, or instigating, suborning, or coercing others to commit perjury;
(3) concealing, transferring, selling or destroying property that has been sealed up or distrained, or property of which an inventory has been made and which has been put under his care according to court instruction, or transferring the property that has been frozen;
(4) insulting, slandering, incriminating with false charges, assaulting or maliciously retaliating against judicial officers or personnel, participants in the proceedings, witnesses, interpreters, evaluation experts, inspectors, or personnel assisting in execution;
(5) using violence, threats or other means to hinder judicial officers or personnel from performing their duties; or
(6) refusing to carry out legally effective judgments or orders of the people's court.
With respect to a unit that commits any one of the acts specified above, the people's court may impose a fine on or detain its principal heads or the persons who are held actually responsible for the act; if the act constitutes a crime, investigations for criminal responsibility shall be made according to the law.
Article 78 A fine shall be not more than Renminbi 200 yuan.
A detention period shall be no longer than 15 days.
The people's court shall deliver detained persons to a public security organ for custody. The people's court may decide to grant the detained person an early release if he admits and corrects his wrongdoing.
Fines and detentions may be imposed in combination.
Article 104 A fine on an individual shall not exceed Renminbi 1,000 yuan. A fine on a unit shall not be less than Renminbi 1,000 yuan and shall not exceed Renminbi 30,000 yuan.
The period of detention shall not be longer than 15 days.
The people's court shall deliver detained persons to a public security organ for custody. The people's court may decide to advance the time of release, if the detainee admits and mends his wrongdoings.
Article 79 Summonses by warrant, fines and detentions must be approved by the president of a people's court.
Letters of decision shall be issued for fines and detentions. If an offender refuses to comply to a fine or detention, he may apply for one reconsideration. The execution of the decision shall not be suspended during the time of reconsideration.
Article 105 Constrained appearance in court, imposition of a fine or detention shall be subject to the approval of the president of the people's court.
A peremptory writ shall be issued for constraining appearance in court.
A decision in writing shall be made for the imposition of a fine or detention. The offender, if dissatisfied with the decision, may apply to a people's court at a higher level for reconsideration which could be granted only once. The execution of the decision shall not be suspended during the time of reconsideration.
CHAPTER IX Litigation Costs CHAPTER XI Litigation Costs
Article 80 the party filing a civil lawsuit must pay an acceptance fee as required. For civil cases involving property, the litigation costs other than the acceptance fee must also be paid according to regulations.
Procedures for the payment of litigation costs shall be formulated separately.
Article 107 Any party filing a civil lawsuit shall pay court costs according to the rules. For property cases, the party shall pay other fees in addition to the court costs.
Any party that has genuine difficulty in paying litigation costs may, according to the relevant rules, apply to the people's court for deferment or reduction of the payment or for its exemption.
Particulars for payment of litigation costs shall be laid down separately.
Part TWO Procedure of First Instance
CHAPTER X Ordinary Procedure CHAPTER XII Ordinary Procedure of First Instance
Section 1 Bringing a Suit and Accepting a Case Section 1 Bringing a Lawsuit and Entertaining a Case
Article 81 The following requirements must be met when a suit is brought:
(1) The plaintiff must be an individual, enterprise, institution, state organ or public organization that has a direct interest in the case;
(2) There must be a specific defendant, a concrete claim and a factual basis for the suit; and
(3) The suit must fall within the scope of jurisdiction of the people's courts and the specific jurisdiction of the people's court where it is filed.
Article 108 The following conditions must be met when a lawsuit is brought:
(1) the plaintiff must be a citizen, legal person or any other organization that has a direct interest in the case;
(2) there must be a definite defendant;
(3) there must be specific claim or claims, facts, and cause or causes for the suit; and
(4) the suit must be within the scope of acceptance for civil actions by the people's court and under the jurisdiction of the people's court where the suit is entertained.
Article 82 When bringing a suit, a bill of complaint shall be submitted to the people's court, and copies of the bill shall be prepared according to the number of defendants.
If a plaintiff has true difficulty in writing a bill of complaint, he may state his complaint orally, and the court shall transcribe it an inform the other party.
Article 109 When a lawsuit is brought, a statement of complaint shall be submitted to the people's court, and copies of the statement shall be provided according to the number of defendants.
If the plaintiff has genuine difficulty in presenting the statement of complaint in writing, he may state his complaint orally; the people's court shall transcribe the complaint and inform the other party of it accordingly.
Article 83 A bill of complaint shall clearly set forth the following:
(1) The name, sex, age, ethnic status, native place, occupation, work unit and address of each person who is a party to the case or, if a party is an enterprise, institution, government organ or public organization, its name, address and legal representative's name and position;
(2) The claim of the lawsuit and the facts and grounds on which it is based; and
(3) Any evidence and its source, as well as the names and addresses of witnesses.
Article 110 A statement of complaint shall clearly set forth the following:
(1) the name, sex, age, ethnic status, occupation, work unit and home address of the parties to the case; if the parties are legal persons or any other organizations, their names, addresses and the names and posts of the legal representatives or the principal heads.
(2) the claim or claims of the suit, the facts and grounds on which the suit is based; and
(3) the evidence and its source, as well as the names and home addresses of the witnesses.
Article 84 The people's court shall deal with the various lawsuits described below according to their specific circumstances:
(1) In cases of violation of the regulations on Security Administration Punishments, it shall refer the plaintiff to a public security organ for handling.
(2) For disputes which should be handled by other administrative organs according to law, it shall refer the plaintiff to the relevant administrative organ for settlement.
(3) In cases in which a judgment or order has already taken legal effect, but one party again brings a suit regarding the same claim, it shall notify that party to file an appeal.
(4) A case shall not be accepted if it is not permitted by law to be filed within a specified period but nevertheless is filed within that period.
(5) Any divorce suit that has been rejected by a judgment and is refiled within six months without new developments and reasons shall not be accepted.
Article 111 The people's court must entertain the lawsuits filed in conformity with the provisions of Article 108 of this Law. With respect to lawsuits described below, the people's court shall deal with them in the light of their specific circumstances:
(1) for a lawsuit within the scope of administrative actions in accordance with the provisions of the Administrative Procedure Law, the people's court shall advise the plaintiff to institute administrative proceedings;
(2) if, according to the law, both parties have on a voluntary basis reached a written agreement to submit their contract dispute to an arbitral organ for arbitration, they may not institute legal proceedings in a people's court. The people's court shall advise the plaintiff to apply to the arbitral organ for arbitration;
(3) in case of disputes which, according to the law, shall be dealt with by other organs, the people's court shall advise the plaintiff to apply to the relevant organ for settlement;
(4) with respect to cases that are not under its jurisdiction, the people's court shall advise the plaintiff to bring a lawsuit in the competent people's court;
(5) with respect to cases in which a judgment or order has already taken legal effect, but either party brings a suit again, the people's court shall advise that party to file an appeal instead, except when the order of the people's court is one that permits the withdrawal of a suit;
(6) with respect to an action that may not be filed within a specified period according to the law, it shall not be entertained, if it is filed during that period.
(7) in a divorce case in which a judgment has been made disallowing the divorce, or in which both parties have become reconciled after conciliation, or in a case concerning adoptive relationship in which a judgment has been made or conciliation has been successfully conducted to maintain the adoptive relation-ship, if the plaintiff files a suit again within six months in the absence of any new developments or new reasons, it shall not be entertained.
Article 85 When a people's court receives a bill of complaint or an oral complaint and finds upon examination that it meets the requirements for acceptance as specified in this Law, it shall within seven days file a case; if the complaint does not meet the requirements for acceptance as specified in this Law, the court shall within seven days notify the plaintiff that the complaint has been rejected and provide due explanation. Article 112 When a people's court receives a statement of complaint or an oral complaint and finds after examination that it meets the requirements for acceptance, the court shall place the case on the docket within seven days and notify the parties concerned; if it does not meet the requirements for acceptance the court shall make an order within seven days to reject it.
The plaintiff, if not satisfied with the order, may file an appeal.
Section 2 Preparations for Trial Section 2 Preparations for Trial
Article 86 In a case claiming overdue alimony, support for children or elders, pension for the disabled or the family of a deceased or remuneration for labour, the people's court shall send a copy of the bill of complaint to the defendant within five days after accepting the cases, and the defendant shall file a bill of defence within ten days after receiving the copy of the bill of complaint. In other cases, the people's court shall send a copy of the bill of complaint to the defendant within five days after accepting the case, and the defendant shall file a bill of defence within 15 days after receiving the copy of the bill of complaint.
Failure by the defendant to file a bill of defence shall not prevent the case from being heard by the people's court.
Article 113 The people's court shall send a copy of the statement of complaint to the defendant within five days after docketing the case, and the defendant shall file a defence within 15 days from receipt of the copy of the statement of complaint.
When the defendant files a defence, the people's court shall send a copy of it to the plaintiff within five days from its receipt. Failure by the defendant to file a defence shall not prevent the case from being tried by the people's court.
Article 87 The judicial personnel must carefully examine the case materials, carry out investigations and research, and gather evidence.
It shall be the duty of the units concerned to help the people's court conduct investigation.
Article 116 The judicial officers must carefully examine and verify the case materials and carry out investigations and collection of necessary evidence.
Article 88 The personnel sent by a people's court to conduct an investigation shall first show their credentials to the person being investigated.
The written record of an investigation shall be checked by the person investigated and then signed or sealed by both the investigator and the investigated.
Article 117 The personnel sent by a people's court to conduct investigations shall produce their credentials before the person to be investigated.
The written record of an investigation shall be checked by the person investigated and then signed or sealed by both the investigator and the investigated.
Article 89 If necessary, a people's court may entrust an investigation to a people's court in another locality.
The entrusting people's court shall clearly set out the matters and requirements of the entrusted investigation. The entrusted people's court may on its own initiative conduct supplementary investigation.
The entrusting people's court shall complete the investigation within 30 days after receiving the rogatory letter. If for some reason it cannot complete the investigation, it shall notify the entrusting people's court in writing within the above-mentioned time limit.
Article 118 A people's court may, when necessary, entrust a people's court in another locality with the investigations.
The entrusting people's court shall clearly set out the matters for and requirements of the entrusted investigations. The entrusted people's court may on its own initiative conduct supplementary investigations.
The entrusted people's court shall complete the investigations within 30 days after receiving the commission in writing. If for some reason it cannot complete the investigations, the said people's court shall notify the entrusting people's court in writing within the above-mentioned time limit.
Article 90 If a person instituting or responding to a prosecution does not qualify to be a party to a case, the people's court shall notify another party that does qualify, to participate in the proceedings in place of the disqualified party.
Article 91 If a party who must participate in a joint lawsuit fails to participate in the proceedings, the people's court shall notify him to participate. Article 119 If a party who must participate in a joint action fails to participate in the proceedings, the people's court shall notify him to participate.
Section 3 Preservative Measures in Litigation and Advance Payment
Article 92 If it becomes impossible or difficult to execute a judgment because of the acts of one of the parties or for other reasons, the people's court may, at the request of the other party or on its own authority, order preservative measures in litigation to be adopted.
After accepting a party's application for preservative measures in litigation, if the case is urgent, the people's court must make a ruling and begin to implement it within 48 hours.
Article 92 In the cases where the execution of a judgment may become impossible or difficult because of the acts of either party or for other reasons, the people's court may, at the application of the other party, order the adoption of measures for property preservation. In the absence of such application, the people's court may of itself, when necessary, order the adoption of measures for property preservation.
In adopting property preservation measures, the people's court may enjoin the applicant to provide security; if the applicant fails to do so, his application shall be rejected.
After receiving an application, the people's court must, if the case is urgent, make an order within 48 hours; if the order for the adoption of property preservation measures is made, the execution thereof shall begin immediately.
Article 93 Preservative measures in litigation shall be limited to the scope of the litigation claim or to the property relevant to the case.
Preservative measures in litigation shall be carried out by sealing up, distraining or freezing property, ordering the party concerned to provide a surety or using other methods permitted by law.
If a sealed-up or distrained property cannot be kept for a long time, the people's court may sell it off and take charge of the money obtained.
Article 94 Property preservation shall be limited to the scope of the claims or to the property relevant to the case.
Property preservation shall be effected by sealing up, distraining, freezing or other methods as prescribed by the law.
After the people's court has frozen the property, it shall promptly notify the person whose property has been frozen.
The property that has already been sealed up or frozen shall not be sealed up or frozen for a second time.
Article 94 When a people's court has decided to take preservative measures in litigation, it may order the applicant to provide a surety; if the applicant refuses, his application shall be rejected.
If the applicant loses the lawsuit, he shall compensate the other party for any loss of property due to the preservative measures in litigation.
Article 96 If an application for property preservation is wrongfully made, the applicant shall compensate the person against whom the application is made for any loss incurred from property preservation.

      Article 92 In the cases where the execution of a judgment may become impossible or difficult because of the acts of either party or for other reasons, the people's court may, at the application of the other party, order the adoption of measures for property preservation. In the absence of such application, the people's court may of itself, when necessary, order the adoption of measures for property preservation.
In adopting property preservation measures, the people's court may enjoin the applicant to provide security; if the applicant fails to do so, his application shall be rejected.
After receiving an application, the people's court must, if the case is urgent, make an order within 48 hours; if the order for the adoption of property preservation measures is made, the execution thereof shall begin immediately.
Article 95 The people's court may, when necessary, order an advance payment to be immediately implemented in the following cases:
(1) Claims for alimony, support for children or elders and pension for the disabled or the family of a deceased;
(2) Claims for remuneration for labour;
(3) Other claims requiring advance payment.
Article 97 The people's court may, upon application of the party concerned, order advance execution in respect of the following cases:
(1) those involving claims for alimony, support for children or elders, pension for the disabled or the family of a decedent, or expenses for medical care;
(2) those involving claims for remuneration for labour; and
(3) those involving urgent circumstances that require advance execution.
Article 96 If a party refuses to accept an order of preservative measures in litigation or advance payment, he may apply for one reconsideration.
Implementation of the order shall not be suspended during the time of reconsideration.
Article 99 If the party concerned is not satisfied with the order made on property preservation or execution, he may apply for reconsideration which could be granted only once. Execution of the order shall not be suspended during the time of reconsideration.
Section 4 Conciliation
Article 97 If a civil case which has been accepted by a people's court can be conciliated, the people's court shall, on the basis of ascertaining the facts and distinguishing between right and wrong, conduct conciliation and urge the parties to reach mutual understanding and compromise. Article 85 In the trial of civil cases, the people's court shall distinguish between right and wrong on the basis of the facts being clear and conduct conciliation between the parties on a voluntary basis.
Article 98 When a people's court conducts a conciliation, a single judge or a collegial panel may preside. Conciliations shall be conducted locally whenever possible. Article 86 When a people's court conducts conciliation, a single judge or a collegial panel may preside over it. Conciliation shall be conducted on the spot as much as possible.
When a people's court conducts conciliation, it may employ simplified methods to notify the parties concerned and the witnesses to appear in court.
Article 99 When a people's court conducts a conciliation, it may, according to the needs of the case, request the assistance of units or individuals concerned. The requested units or individuals shall assist the people's court in conducting the conciliation. Article 87 When a people's court conducts conciliation, it may invite the units or individuals concerned to come to its assistance. The units or individuals invited shall assist the people's court in conciliation.
Article 100 Conciliation agreements must be based on the voluntariness of both parties; compulsion shall not be permitted. Article 88 A settlement agreement reached between the two parties through conciliation must be of their own free will and without compulsion. The content of the settlement agreement shall not contravene the law.
Article 101 When a conciliation agreement has been reached, a conciliation statement shall be drawn up and signed by the judge and the court clerk, and the seal of the people's court shall be affixed to it. Once the conciliation statement is served, it shall become legally effective.
Any agreement for which no conciliation statement needs to be drawn up shall be entered into the written records and shall become legally effective after being signed or sealed by both parties, the judge and the court clerk.
Article 89 When a settlement agreement through conciliation is reached, the people's court shall draw up a conciliation statement. The conciliation statement shall clearly set forth the claims, the facts of the case, and the result of the conciliation.
The conciliation statement shall be signed by the judge and the court clerk, sealed by the people's court, and served on both parties.
Once it is receipted by the two parties concerned, the conciliation statement shall become legally effective.
Article 102 If no agreement is reached through conciliation or if one party retracts his consent before the conciliation statement is served, the people's court shall proceed with a trial and not prolong the case with further conciliation efforts. Article 91 If no agreement is reached through conciliation or if either party backs out of the settlement agreement before the conciliation statement is served, the people's court shall render a judgment without delay.
Section 5 Trial in Court Section 3 Trial in Court
Article 103 Civil cases in the people's courts shall be heard in public, except for cases that involve state secrets or the private affairs of individuals or are otherwise provided by law.
A divorce case may not be heard in public if a party so requests.
Article 120 Civil cases shall be tried in public, except for those that involve State secrets or personal privacy or are to be tried otherwise as provided by the law.
A divorce case or a case involving trade secrets may not be heard in public if a party so requests.
Article 104 In handling civil cases, the people's courts shall, whenever necessary and possible, send out circuit tribunals to hold trials on the spot.
The people's courts shall follow the summary procedure in circuit tribunals, unless the case is a major or complicated one.
Article 121 For civil cases, the people's court shall, whenever necessary, go on circuit to hold trials on the spot.
Article 105 The people's court shall notify the parties and other participants in a civil case three days before the opening of a court session. In a case to be heard in public, the names of the parties, the cause of action and the time and location of the court session shall be announced publicly. Article 122 For civil cases, the people's court shall notify the parties and other participants in the proceedings three days before the opening of a court session. If a case is to be tried in public, the names of the parties, the cause of action and the time and location of the court session shall be announced publicly.
Article 106 Before a court session is called to order, the court clerk shall ascertain whether or not the parties and other participants in the case are present and announce the rules of order of the court.
At the beginning of a trial, the presiding judge or the sole judge shall check the parties present, announce the cause of action and the names of the judicial personnel and court clerks, inform the parties of their litigation rights and obligations and ask the parties whether or not they wish to apply for the withdrawal of any court personnel.
Article 123 Before a court session is called to order, the court clerk shall ascertain whether or not the parties and other participants in the proceedings are present and announce the rules of order of the court.
At the beginning of a court session, the presiding judge shall check the parties present, announce the cause of action and the names of the judicial officers and court clerks, inform the parties of their relevant litigation rights and obligations and ask the parties whether or not they wish to apply for the withdrawal of any court personnel.
Article 107 Courtroom investigation shall be conducted in the following order:
(1) Questioning of the parties and presentation of their statements;
(2) Informing the witnesses of their rights and obligations, questioning of the witnesses and reading of the statements of absentee witnesses;
(3) Questioning of the expert witnesses and reading of the expert conclusions;
(4) Presentation of documentary evidence, material evidence and audio-visual reference material; and
(5) Reading of the records of inquests.
Article 124 Court investigation shall be conducted in the following order:
(1) statements by the parties;
(2) informing the witnesses of their rights and obligations, giving testimony by the witnesses and reading of the written statements of absentee witnesses;
(3) presentation of documentary evidence, material evidence and audio-visual material;
(4) reading of expert conclusions; and
(5) reading of records of inspection.
Article 108 The parties may present new evidence during a court session.
With the permission of the court, the parties may put questions to witnesses, expert witnesses and inspectors.
The parties may request a new expert evaluation, investigation or inquest, subject to the approval of the people's court.
Article 125 The parties may present new evidence during a court session.
With the permission of the court, the parties may put questions to witnesses, expert witnesses and inspectors.
Any request by the parties concerned for a new investigation, expert evaluation or inspection shall be subject to the approval of the people's court.
Article 109 Additional claims by the plaintiff, counterclaims by the defendant and third-party claims related to the case may be tried together. Article 126 Additional claims by the plaintiff, counterclaims by the defendant and third-party claims related to the case may be tried in combination.
Article 110 Court debates shall be conducted in the following order:
(1) Presentation of oral statements by the plaintiff and his agents ad litem;
(2) Response by the defendant and his agents ad litem; and
(3) Debate between the two sides.
At the end of the court debate, the presiding judge shall ask both sides to present their final arguments, with the plaintiff going first and then the defendant.
Article 127 Court debate shall be conducted in the following order:
(1) oral statements by the plaintiff and his agents ad litem;
(2) defence by the defendant and his agents ad litem;
(3) oral statement or defence by the third party and his agents ad litem;
(4) debate between the two sides.
At the end of the court debate, the presiding judge shall ask each side, first the plaintiff, then the defendant, and then the third party, for their final opinion respectively.
Article 111 At the end of the court debate, another conciliation effort may be conducted; if no agreement can be reached, a judgment shall be made in accordance with the law. Article 128 At the end of the court debate, a judgment shall be made according to the law. Where conciliation is possible prior to the rendering of a judgment, conciliation efforts may be made; if conciliation proves to be unsuccessful, a judgment shall be made without delay.
Article 112 If a plaintiff has been served twice with a legal subpoena from a people's court and refuses to appear in court without justified reason, or if he walk out during a court session without the permission of the court, the court may consider the suit withdrawn; if the defendant files a counterclaim, the court may make a judgment by default. Article 129 If a plaintiff, having been served with a summons, refuses to appear in court without justified reasons, or if he withdraws during a court session without the permission of the court, the case may be considered as withdrawn by him; if the defendant files a counterclaim in the mean time, the court may make a judgment by default.
Article 113 If a defendant has been served twice with a legal subpoena from a people's court and refuses to appear in court without justified reason, or if he walks out during a court session without the permission of the court, the court may make a judgment by default as well as apply the provisions of Article 76 of this Law. Article 130 If a defendant, having been served with a summons, refuses to appear in court without justified reasons, or if he withdraws during a court session without the permission of the court, the court may make a judgment by default.
Article 114 If a plaintiff applies to withdraw his complaints before judgment is pronounced, the people's court shall decide whether to grant approval. Article 131 If a plaintiff applies for withdrawal of the case before the judgment is pronounced, the people's court shall decide whether to approve or disapprove it.
If withdrawal of the case is not allowed by an order of the people's court, and the plaintiff, having been served with a summons, refuses to appear in court without justified reasons, the people's court may make a judgment by default.
Article 115 The people's court shall publicly pronounce its judgment in all cases. If a judgment is pronounced in court, the written judgment shall be issued and delivered within ten days; if a judgment is pronounced later on a fixed date, the written judgment shall be issued immediately after the pronouncement.
Upon pronouncement of a judgment, the parties must be informed of their right to file an appeal, the time limit for appeal and the court to which they may appeal.
Upon pronouncement of a divorce judgment, the parties must be informed not to remarry before the judgment takes legal effect.
Article 134 The people's court shall publicly pronounce its judgment in all cases, whether publicly tried or not.
If a judgment is pronounced in court, the written judgment shall be issued and delivered within ten days; if a judgment is pronounced later on a fixed date, the written judgment shall be issued and given immediately after the pronouncement.
Upon pronouncement of a judgment, the parties concerned must be informed of their right to file an appeal, the time limit for appeal and the court to which they may appeal.
Upon pronouncement of a divorce judgment, the parties concerned must be informed not to remarry before the judgment takes legal effect.
Article 116 A trial shall be postponed under any of the following conditions:
(1) If the parties or other participants in the proceedings fail to appear in court as required;
(2) If the trial cannot proceed because a party requests the withdrawal of a judicial functionary;
(3) If it is necessary to summon new witnesses to court, collect new evidence, make a new expert evaluation, hold another inquest, or make supplementary investigation; or
(4) If other circumstances arise that warrant the postponement of the trial.
Article 132 Under any of the following circumstances, the trial may be adjourned:
(1) the parties concerned and other participants in the proceedings required to appear in court fail to do so for justified reasons;
(2) any party concerned makes an extempore application for the withdrawal of a judicial officer; or
(3) it is necessary to summon new witnesses to court, collect new evidence, make a new expert evaluation, new inspection, or to make a supplementary investigation; or
(4) other circumstances that warrant the adjournment.
Article 117 The court clerk shall make a written record of the entire court proceedings, which shall be signed by the judicial personnel and the court clerk.
The court record shall be read out in court, or the parties and other participants in the proceedings may be notified to read the record while in court or within five days. If the parties or other participants consider that there are omissions or errors in the record with respect to their statements, they shall have the right to request additions or corrections to be made.
The court record shall be signed or sealed by the parties and other participants in the proceedings. Refusal to do so shall be recorded in a note to be attached to the file.
Article 133 The court clerk shall make a written record of the entire court proceedings, which shall be signed by him and the judicial officers.
The court record shall be read out in court, or else the parties and other participants in the proceedings may be notified to read the record while in court or within five days. If they consider that there are omissions or errors in the record of their own statements, the parties or other participants in the proceedings shall have the right to apply for rectifications. If such rectifications are not made, the application shall be placed on record in the case file.
The court record shall be signed or sealed by the parties and other participants in the proceedings. Refusal to do so shall be put on record in the case file.
Section 6 Suspension and Conclusion of a Lawsuit Section 4 Suspension and Termination of Legal Proceedings
Article 118 A lawsuit shall be suspended under any of the following conditions:
(1) If one of the parties dies and it is necessary to wait for his heir to participate in the proceedings;
(2) If one of the parties has lost the capacity to engage in litigation and his agent ad litem has not been designated;
(3) If one of the parties cannot participate in the proceedings for reasons of force majeure;
(4) If the current case is dependent on the results of the trial of another case that has not yet been concluded; or
(5) If other circumstances arise that warrant the suspension of the lawsuit.
The proceedings shall resume after the causes of the suspension have been eliminated.
Article 136 Legal proceedings shall be suspended in any of the following circumstances:
(1) one of the parties dies and it is necessary to wait for the heir or heiress to make clear whether to participate or not in the proceedings;
(2) one of the parties has lost the capacity to engage in litigation and his agent ad item has not been designated yet;
(3) the legal person or any other organization as one of the parties has dissolved, and the successor to its rights and obligations has not been determined yet;
(4) one of the parties is unable to participate in the proceedings for reasons of force majeure;
(5) the adjudication of the case pending is dependent on the results of the trial of another case that has not yet been concluded; or
(6) other circumstances that warrant the suspension of the litigation.
The proceedings shall resume after the causes of the suspension have been eliminated.
Article 119 A lawsuit shall be concluded under any of the following conditions:
(1) If the plaintiff dies without an heir or the heir waives his right of litigation;
(2) If the defendant dies without any estate and with no one to discharge his obligations;
(3) If no heir comes forward to participate in the proceedings within six months after the lawsuit has been suspended due to the death of a party; or
(4) If one of the parties in a divorce case dies.
Article 137 Legal proceedings shall be terminated in any of the following circumstances:
(1) the plaintiff dies without a successor, or the successor waives the right to litigate;
(2) the decedent leaves no estate, nor anyone to succeed to his obligations;
(3) one of the parties in a divorce case dies; or
(4) one of the parties dies who is a claimant to alimony, support for elders or children or to the termination of adoptive relationship.
Section 7 Judgment and Order Section 5 Judgment and Order
Article 120 The following shall be clearly written into a judgment:
(1) The cause of action, the claims, and the facts of and reasons for the dispute;
(2) The facts and reasons confirmed in the judgment, and the law applied;
(3) The result of the judgment and the litigation costs to be borne; and
(4) The time limit for filing an appeal and the appellate court designated.
The judgment shall be signed by the judicial personnel and the court clerk, and the seal of the people's court shall be affixed to it.
Article 138 A judgment shall clearly set forth the following:
(1) cause of action, the claims, facts and cause or causes of the dispute;
(2) the facts and causes as found in the judgment and the basis of application of the law;
(3) the outcome of adjudication and the costs to be borne; and
(4) the time limit for filing an appeal and the appellate court with which the appeal may be filed.
The judgment shall be signed by the judicial officers and the court clerk, with the seal of the people's court affixed to it.
Article 121 If some of the facts in a case being tried by the people's court are already evident, the court may pass judgment on those facts first. Article 139 If some of the facts in a case being tried by the people's court are already evident, the court may pass judgment on that part of the case first.
Article 122 Orders shall be applied to the following matters:
(1) Rejection of a lawsuit;
(2) Matters that concern preservative measures in litigation or advance payment;
(3) Approval or disapproval of withdrawal of a lawsuit;
(4) Suspension or conclusion of a lawsuit;
(5) Rectification of errors in the judgment; and
(6) Other matters which require settlement by a court order.
An order in the category of item (1) above may be appealed.
A written order shall be signed by the judicial personnel and the court clerk, and the seal of the people's court shall be affixed to it. If an order is issued orally, it shall be entered in the record.
Article 140 An order in writing is to be made in any of the following conditions:
(1) refusal to entertain a case;
(2) objection to the jurisdiction of a court;
(3) rejection of a complaint;
(4) property preservation and advance execution;
(5) approval or disapproval of withdrawal of a suit;
(6) suspension or termination of legal proceedings;
(7) correction ofclerical errorin the judgment;
(8) suspension or termination of execution;
(9) refusal to enforce an arbitration award;
(10) refusal to enforce a document of a notary office evidencing the rights of a creditor and entitling him to its compulsory execution;
(11) other matters to be decided in the form of an order in writing.
An appeal may be lodged against an order in writing in Items (1), (2) and (3) mentioned above.
An order in writing shall be signed by the judicial officers and the court clerk, with the seal of the people's court affixed to it. If it is issued orally, the order shall be entered in the record.
Article 123 All judgments and orders of the Supreme people's Court, as well as judgments and orders that may not be appealed according to law or have not been appealed within the prescribed time limit, shall be legally effective. Article 141 All judgments and written orders of the Supreme People's Court, as well as judgments and written orders that may not be appealed against according to the law or that have not been appealed against within the prescribed time limit, shall be legally effective.
CHAPTER XI Summary Procedure CHAPTER XIII Summary Procedure
Article 124 When trying simple civil cases, the basic people's courts and the tribunals dispatched by them may apply the summary procedure stipulated in this Chapter. Article 142 When trying simple civil cases in which the facts are evident, the rights and obligations clear and the disputes trivial in character, the basic people's courts and the tribunals dispatched by them shall apply the provisions of this Chapter.
Article 125 In simple civil cases the plaintiff may file his complaint orally.
The two parties may appear at the same time at a basic people's court or a tribunal dispatched by it to request a solution of their dispute. The basic people's court or the tribunal dispatched by it may try the case immediately or set a date for the trial.
Article 143 In simple civil cases, the plaintiff may lodge his complaint orally.
The two parties concerned may at the same time come before a basic people's court or a tribunal dispatched by it for a solution of their dispute. The basic people's court or the tribunal it dispatched may try the case immediately or set a date for the trial.
Article 126 In trying a simple civil case, the basic people's court or the tribunal dispatched by it may at any time use simplified methods to summon the parties and witnesses. Article 144 In trying a simple civil case, the basic people's court or the tribunal dispatched by it may use simplified methods to summon at any time the parties and witnesses.
Article 127 Simple civil cases shall be tried by a single judge alone who shall not be restricted by the provisions of Articles 105, 107 and 110 of this Law. Article 145 Simple civil cases shall be tried by a single judge alone and the trial of such cases shall not be bound by the provisions of Articles 122, 124, and 127 of this Law.
CHAPTER XII Special Procedure CHAPTER XV Special Procedure
Section 1 General Stipulations Section 1 General Provisions
Article 128 The stipulations in this Chapter shall be applied when a people's court tries cases concerning a roll of voters; the proclamation of death of a missing person; the determination of a citizen as incompetent; and the determination of a property as ownerless. For matters not covered in this Chapter, the relevant stipulations of this Law and other laws shall be applied. Article 160 When the people's courts try cases concerning the qualification of voters, the declaration of a person as missing or dead, the adjudgment of legal incapacity or restricted legal capacity of a citizen and the adjudgment of a property as ownerless, the provisions of this Chapter shall apply. For matters not covered in this Chapter, the relevant provisions of this Law and other laws shall apply .
Article 129 If a case is tried in accordance with the procedure stipulated in this Chapter, the judgment of first instance shall be final. A collegial panel of judges shall be formed for the trial of any case involving a roll of voters or any major, difficult or complicated case; other cases shall be tried by a single judge alone. Article 161 In cases tried in accordance with the procedure provided in this Chapter, the judgment of first instance shall be final . A collegial panel of judges shall be formed for the trial of any case in involving the qualification of voters or of any major, difficult or complicated case; other cases shall be tried by a single judge alone.
Article 130 If a people's court, while trying a case in accordance with the procedure of this Chapter, discovers that the case involves a dispute over rights and interests in civil affairs, it shall issue an order to terminate the special procedure and inform the interested parties to bring another suit in accordance with ordinary or summary procedure. Article 162 If a people's court, while trying a case in accordance with the procedure provided in this Chapter, finds that the case involves a civil dispute over rights and interests, it shall make a written order to terminate the special procedure and inform the interested parties to otherwise institute and action.
Section 2 Cases Concerning Rolls of Voters Section 2 Cases Concerning the Qualification of Voters
Article 131 If citizens refuse to accept an election committee's decision on an appeal concerning a roll of voters, they may bring a suit in the basic people's court located in their electoral district. Article 164 If a citizen refuses to accept an election committee's decision on an appeal concerning his voting qualification, he may, five days before the election day, bring a suit in the basic people's court located in the electoral district.
Article 132 After it has accepted a case concerning a roll of voters, the people's court must try the case before the elections are held.
The plaintiff, a representative of the election committee and other citizens concerned must participate in the proceedings.
The written judgment of the people's court shall be immediately served on the election committee and the plaintiff, and other citizens concerned shall be notified of the judgment.
Article 165 After entertaining a case concerning voting qualification, a people's court must conclude the trial before the election day.
The party who brings the suit, the representative of the election committee and other citizens concerned must participate in the proceedings.
The written judgment of the people's court shall be served on the election committee and the party who brings the suit before the election day; other citizens concerned shall be notified of the judgment.
Section 3 Cases Concerning the Proclamation of the Death of a Missing Person Section 3 Cases Concerning the Declaration of a Person as Missing or Dead
Article 133 An application for proclaiming the death of a missing person shall be filed by the interested party with the people's court in the locality where the missing person last resided.
The application shall clearly state the facts and time of the disappearance as well as the action requested, and documentary evidence form a public security organ concerning the missing person must be appended.
Article 166 With respect to a citizen whose whereabouts are unknown for two years in full, if the interested party applies for declaring the person as missing, the application shall be filed with the basic people's court in the locality where the missing person has his domicile.
The application shall clearly state the facts and time of the disappearance of the person missing as well as the motion; documentary evidence from a public security organ or other relevant organs concerning the disappearance of the citizen shall be appended to the application.

      Article 167 With respect to a citizen whose whereabouts are unknown for four years in full or whose whereabouts are unknown for two years in full after an accident in which he was involved, or with respect to a citizen whose whereabouts are unknown after such an accident, and, upon proof furnished by the relevant authorities that it is impossible for him to survive, if the interested party applies for declaring such person as dead, the application shall be filed with the basic people's court in the locality where the missing person has his domicile.
The application shall clearly state the facts and time of the disappearance as well as the motion; documentary evidence from a public security organ or other relevant organs concerning the disappearance of the citizen shall be appended to the application.
Article 134 After it has accepted a case concerning a proclamation of the death of a missing person, the people's court shall issue a public search notice for the missing person. The time limit of the notice shall be one year.
On the expiration of the period of public notice, the people's court, depending on whether the death of the missing person has been ascertained, shall order to terminate the trial or make a judgment proclaiming the death of the missing person.
Article 168 After entertaining a case concerning the declaration of a person as missing or dead, the people's court shall issue a public notice in search of the person missing. The period of the public notice for declaring a person as missing shall be three months, and that for declaring a person as dead shall be one year. Where a citizen's whereabouts are unknown after an accident in which he was involved and, upon proof furnished by the relevant authorities that it is impossible for him to survive, the period of the public notice for proclaiming such person as dead shall be three months.
On the expiration of the period of the public notice, the people's court shall, depending on whether the fact of the missing or death of the person has been confirmed, make a judgment declaring the person missing or dead or make a judgment rejecting the application.
Article 135 If a missing person who has been proclaimed dead by a people's court should reappear, the people's court, upon the application of that person or an interested party, shall make a new judgment and annul the former one. Article 169 If a person who has been declared missing or dead by a people's court reappears, the people's court shall, upon the application of that person or of an interested party, make a new judgment and annul the previous one.
Section 4 Cases Concerning the Determination of a Citizen as Incompetent Section 4 Cases Concerning the Adjudgment of Legal Incapacity or Restricted Legal Capacity of Citizens
Article 136 An application for determining a citizen as incompetent shall be filed by the citizen's close relatives or his work unit with the basic people's court in the locality where the citizen has his domicile.
The application must clearly state the facts and grounds on which the citizen's incompetence is claimed.
Article 170 An application for adjudgment of legal incapacity or restricted legal capacity of a citizen shall be filed by the citizen's near relatives or any other interested party with the basic people's court in the locality where the citizen has his domicile.
The application shall clearly state the fact and grounds of the citizen's legal incapacity or restricted legal capacity.

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