• PART 15 PART 15 — Witnesses And Depositions

    • 119. Scope and interpretation

      (1) The following Rules provide for the circumstances in which a party may be required to attend Court to give evidence or produce a document, and for a party to obtain evidence before a hearing to be used at the hearing.
      (2) The reference to a hearing in paragraph (1) includes reference to the trial.

    • 120. Witness summons

      (1) An application for a witness summons must be made in accordance with the relevant practice direction.
      (2) A witness summons is a document issued by the Court requiring a witness to attend Court to give evidence or to produce documents to the Court either on the date fixed for a hearing or on such date as the Court may direct.
      (3) There must be a separate witness summons for each witness.
      (4) The only documents that a summons under this Rule can require a person to produce before a hearing are documents which that person could be required to produce at the hearing.
      Amended on July 9 2020

    • 121. Issue of a witness summons

      (1) A witness summons may only be issued by the Court, and is issued on the date entered on the summons by the Court.
      (2) A party must obtain the Court's permission where he wishes to —
      (a) in the case of a witness domiciled or resident in the UAE (including ADGM), have a summons issued less than 7 days before the date of the trial;
      (b) in the case of a witness domiciled or resident in any other jurisdiction, have a summons issued less than 21 days before the date of the trial; or
      (c) have a summons issued for a witness to attend Court to give evidence or to produce documents on any date except the date fixed for the trial, or at any hearing except the trial.
      (3) The Court may set aside or vary a witness summons issued under this Rule.

    • 122. Witness summons in aid of inferior court, of tribunal or of a panel

      (1) The Court may issue a witness summons in aid of an inferior court, of a tribunal or of a panel and may set aside or vary a witness summons issued under Rule 121(1).
      (2) In paragraph (1) of this Rule, “inferior court, tribunal or panel” means any court, tribunal or panel in the United Arab Emirates that does not have power to issue a witness summons in relation to proceedings before it.
      Amended on July 9 2020

    • 123. Serving a witness summons

      (1) A witness summons must be served personally on the addressee by the party on whose behalf it is issued and the issuing party must serve a copy of a witness summons on each other party to the proceedings as soon as practicable after the summons has been served on the addressee.
      (2) Unless a rule or a relevant practice direction provides otherwise, a witness summons is binding if it is served in accordance with the relevant practice direction.
      (3) A witness summons which is served in accordance with these Rules and requires the witness to attend Court, an inferior court, a tribunal or a panel to give evidence is binding until the conclusion of the hearing at which the attending of the witness is required.

    • 124. Right of witness to travelling expenses and compensation

      At the time of service of a witness summons, the witness must be offered or paid a sum reasonably sufficient to cover his expenses in travelling to and from the Court and such sum by way of compensation for loss of time as may be specified in a relevant practice direction and for costs otherwise incurred in compliance with a witness summons.

    • 125. Evidence by deposition

      (1) A party may apply for an order for a person to be examined before the hearing takes place (an "examination order").
      (2) Evidence obtained following an examination order is referred to as a "deposition".
      (3) An examination order shall be for a deponent to be examined on affirmation before —
      (a) a Judge;
      (b) the Registrar;
      (c) an examiner of the Court appointed by the Registrar in accordance with the relevant practice direction;
      (d) a lawyer; or
      (e) such other person as the Court appoints.
      (4) The examination order may require the production of any document which the Court considers is necessary for the purpose of the examination and must state the date, time and place of the examination.
      (5) At the time of service of the examination order, the deponent must be offered or paid a sum reasonably sufficient to cover his expenses in travelling to and from the place of examination and such sum by way of compensation for loss of time as may be specified in a relevant practice direction.
      (6) Where the Court orders a deposition to be taken, it may also order the party who obtained the examination order to serve a witness statement or witness summary in relation to the evidence to be given by the deponent

    • 126. Conduct of examination

      (1) Subject to any directions contained in the examination order, the examination must be conducted in the same way as if the witness were giving evidence at trial.
      (2) If all the parties are present, the examiner may conduct the examination of a person not named in the examination order if all the parties and the person to be examined consent.
      (3) The examiner may conduct the examination in private if he considers it appropriate to do so.
      (4) The examiner must ensure that the evidence given by the witness is recorded and transcribed in full, and must send a copy of the deposition to the person who obtained the examination order, to the deponent, to each of the other parties to the proceedings and to the Court.

    • 127. Enforcing attendance of deponent

      (1) If a deponent served with an examination order fails to attend the deposition or refuses to take an affirmation for the purposes of the examination or to answer any lawful question or produce any document at the examination, a certificate of his failure or refusal, signed by the examiner, must be filed by the party requiring the deposition.
      (2) On the certificate being filed, the party requiring the deposition may apply to the Court, without notice, for an order requiring that deponent to attend or to affirm or to answer any lawful question or produce any document, as the case may be.
      (3) The Court may order the deponent against whom an order is made under paragraph (2) of this Rule to pay any costs resulting from his failure or refusal.

    • 128. Use of deposition at a hearing

      (1) A deposition ordered under Rule 125 may be given in evidence at a hearing unless the Court orders otherwise.
      (2) A party intending to put in evidence a deposition at a hearing must serve notice of his intention to do so on every other party.
      (3) The Court may require a deponent to attend the hearing and give evidence orally.
      (4) Where a deposition is given in evidence at trial, it shall be treated as if it were a witness statement for the purposes of Rule 94.
      Amended on June 1, 2017

    • 129. Restrictions on subsequent use of deposition, regarding the deponent's or any other assets, taken for the purpose of any hearing except the trial

      (1) Subject to paragraph (2), where the Court orders a party to be examined about his or any other assets for the purpose of any hearing except the trial, the deposition may be used only for the purpose of the proceedings in which the examination order was made.
      (2) A deposition under this Rule may be used for some other purpose by the party who was examined or by another party if the party who was examined agrees or if the Court gives permission.