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Israeli Domestic Legislation Evidence Evidence Ordinance (New Version), 1971
Evidence Ordinance [New Version], 1971 Print E-mail

Chapter A: Oral Evidence

Article A: Summoning and Competence of Witnesses

1. Power to summon witnesses

1. (A) Subject to the provisions of this Ordinance, any person may be summoned to give evidence which is admissible and relevant to the case.

(B) The court may, in its discretion, refuse to issue a summons which may be unnecessary or which may appear to be demanded for some other purpose than the elucidation of the truth.

2. All are competent to give evidence

2.  All persons are competent to give evidence in all cases, subject as provided in sections 3 and 4, and no person shall be considered incompetent to give evidence by reason of his being a party to a civil action or a complainant or accused in a criminal case or by reason of his being an employer or employee, husband, wife or relative, of the plaintiff or complainant or the defendant or accused, or by reason of his having been convicted of, or being under sentence for, any offense.

3. Restriction as to testimony of spouse

3. In a criminal case, a spouse shall not be competent to give evidence against the other spouse or compellable to give evidence against a person accused jointly with the other spouse in the same indictment.

4. Restriction as to testimony of parent or child

4. In a criminal case, a parent and child shall not be competent to give evidence one against the other and neither shall be compellable to give evidence against a person accused jointly with the other in the same indictment.

5. Permissible evidence

5. The restrictions in sections 3 and 4 will not apply in a criminal trial for one of the following:

(1)  bodily injury or violence or threat to commit one of these;

(2)    an offense under sections 337 or 362 of the Penal Code – 1977 (hereinafter: the Penal Code), or under article J in chapter H and under articles E or F1 in chapter J of the Penal Code, committed by a spouse against his spouse, a parent against his child or a child against his parent;

(2a) an offense under Section 287 of the Penal Code regarding a violation of a protective order issued under the Prevention of Violence in the Family Law, 1991, or regarding a violation of any other judicial order issued under any law that aims to protect the spouse, child or parent of the violator from him;

(3)  an offense under sections 244 through 246, 249 and 249A of the Penal Code, which was committed in relation to one of the offenses specified in this section;

(4)  an attempt to commit one of the offenses specified in this section.

6. Testimony in favor of a relative may be used to prove guilt

6.  If a spouse is called to give evidence in defense of the other spouse, or if a parent is called to give evidence in defense of his child or a child in defense of his parent, the evidence so given, whether in examination in chief or in cross-examination on behalf of the prosecution, may be used in proof of the guilt of the accused person.

7. Testimony on one's own behalf or for the other party

7. In a civil case, either party may give evidence on his own behalf or be summoned to give evidence for the other party.

8. Definitions.

8. In this article, "child" includes an adopted child, and "parent" includes an adopter.

Article B: Testimony as to Statements

9. Statement made by a witness at the time offense was committed

9. Evidence of a statement made at the time when, or shortly before or after, an offense is alleged to have been committed and directly relating to a fact relevant to the case is admissible if the statement was made by a person who is himself a witness.

10. Statement by victim of violence

10. Evidence of a statement made by a person on whom an act of violence is alleged to have been committed and relating to such act of violence or attendant circumstances is admissible even if the person who made the statement is not present as a witness and cannot be produced at the trial because of his death, infirmity or sickness, or absence from Israel, so long as one of the following applies to the statement:

(1) it was made at a time, or shortly after, the act of violence was committed, or so soon after the person had an opportunity for complaining of it;

(2) it is so related to the act of violence in the sequence of events as to be part of the train of circumstances directly connected with the commission of the offense;

(3) it was made when the person was, or believed himself to be dying as a direct consequence of the act of violence.

10a. Statement by witness out of court

10A. (A) A written statement made by a witness out of court shall be admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding if –

(1) its making has been proved at the trial and;

(2) the person who made it is a witness at the trial and the parties have been given an opportunity to examine him;

(3) the testimony, in the opinion of the court, differs from the statement in a material particular or the witness denies the contents of the statement or alleges that he does not remember its contents.

(B) The court may admit a statement referred to in Subsection (A) even if the person who made it is not a witness either because he refuses to testify or is incapable of testifying or because he cannot be brought to court since he is not alive or cannot be found, provided that the court is satisfied, from the circumstances of the case, that improper means have been used to dissuade or prevent the person who made the statement from giving testimony.

(C) The court may base its findings on a statement admitted under this section or on part thereof, and it may prefer such statement to the testimony of the witness, if it sees fit to do so in view of the circumstances of the case, including the circumstances under which the statement was made, the evidence produced at the trial, the conduct of the witness at the trial and indications of the truth which have emerged in the course of the trial. The reasons which prompt the court to do so shall be recorded.

(D) A person shall not be convicted on the basis of a statement admitted under this section unless the evidential material provides corroboration.

10b. Admission of statement by agreement

10B. A written statement made out of court shall be admissible as evidence in a criminal proceeding even if the person who made it is not a witness at the trial, if both parties agree thereto and the contents of the statement are not in dispute, provided the accused is represented by counsel.

10c. Validity of Laws

10C. The provisions of sections 10A and 10B shall not validate evidence inadmissible for some other legal reason or invalidate evidence valid according to some other law.

11. Proof of statement by accused

11. A statement made by an accused person may be proved by the testimony of a person who heard it. Where the statement was written down and signed or otherwise confirmed by the accused, it may be proved by the testimony of a person who was present. A statement written down as aforesaid may be proved also by a written affidavit from a person who was present if the accused is represented and his defense counsel agrees or, where the statement relates to the charge of a misdemeanor or contravention, if the accused, in reply to a question of the court and after the court has explained to him his right to examine the deponent confirms that he has read the statement or that it has been read to him, does not deny that it his statement and waives the examination of the person who took it.

12. Confession

12. (A) Evidence of confession by the accused that he has committed an offense is admissible only when the prosecution has produced evidence as to the circumstances in which it was made and the court is satisfied that it was free and voluntary.

(B) In proof of the circumstances under which the confession of an accused person was made, the court may also admit as evidence a written affidavit by the recipient of the confession detailing the circumstances of the taking thereof and declaring that it was free and voluntary, provided –

(1) that the accused is represented and his defense counsel waives the examination of the recipient of the confession or

(2) that the confession relates to an offense which is a misdemeanor or contravention and the accused, in reply to a question of the court and after the court has explained to him his right to examine the deponent, confirms that he has read the confession or that it has been read to him, does not deny that it was free and voluntary and waives the examination of its recipient.

Article C: Evidence Taken Abroad

13. Evidence on commission in civil proceedings

13. (A) On the application of any party to any civil proceedings, the court may, where it appears necessary for the purpose of justice and subject to such terms as the court may direct, make any order for the examination upon affidavit before any person and in any place outside the jurisdiction of the court of any witness or other person and may give directions as to any matter connected with the examination as may appear reasonable and just and may permit any party to the proceedings to give the deposition in evidence therein.

(B) Any person so directed to take any examination may administer the oath and make a special report to the court as to the examination and the conduct or absence of any witness or other person thereat, and the court may direct such proceedings and make such order as may seem just.

14. Evidence taken abroad in criminal proceedings

14. Notwithstanding anything in the Criminal Procedure Law, 1965, where a deposition has been taken outside the jurisdiction of the courts of Israel in virtue of any treaty, agreement and law, for the purpose of any criminal proceedings in Israel, the court may admit a deposition so taken to be given in evidence, provided that the court is satisfied that there is sufficient reason for the absence of the witness who made the deposition and the accused or his advocate had an opportunity of cross-examining the witness when the deposition was taken.

Chapter B: Written Evidence

Article A: Affidavits

15. Written affidavit as evidence in legal proceeding

15. (A) Where a person is permitted or required by law to prove anything by written affidavit on oath or affirmation, his written affidavit shall be valid evidence if he has been warned that he must declare the truth and that, if he does not do so, he will be liable to the penalties prescribed by law.

(B) The warning under Subsection (A) shall be given, and its giving certified on the face of the affidavit, by –

(1) a judge; or

(2) a judge of a religious court; or

(3) the Attorney-General, the State Attorney, a district attorney, a subdistrict attorney, an assistant state attorney, an assistant district attorney or an assistant of any one of these; or

(4) an advocate; or

(5) the head of a local authority; or

(6) another person empowered in that behalf by the Minister of Justice.

16. Application of criminal law

16. For the purposes of section 120 of the Criminal Code Ordinance, 1936, an affidavit made under Section 15 shall be treated as a declaration on oath.

17. Oral examination

17. (A) The provisions of Ssection 15 shall not derogate from the power of the court to order that the deponent be examined in court, and the court shall grant the request of a party that such be ordered; if the deponent does not appear, the court may disqualify the affidavit from serving as evidence.

(B) Where it appears to the court that the request of a party for a deponent to be examined in court was made vexatiously or frivolously, it may impose the costs of the examination upon the person who made the request.

Article B: Oaths

18. Definitions

18. For the purposes of the Ordinance, "register" means a person appointed to be a register or assistant register under section 30 of the Courts Law, 1957.

19. Power to administer Oath

19. A register or a judge of a magistrates' court may, for any purpose for which provision is not made by any other enactment, administer an oath to or take an affidavit from any person if –

(1) such is required for the purpose of any court or matter in Israel or for the purpose of any court or the registration of any instrument outside Israel;

(2) such person is under a duty to take an oath or make an affidavit;

(3) such person desires to make a statement either upon oath or affidavit;

(4) such person desires to execute before him an instrument for the execution of which an oath or affidavit is required.

Article C: Testimony of Experts and Public Servants

19a. ראיה לפעולת הממשלה

19A. (A) A document provided by the government will be signed by the prime minister or by a minister so authorized by the prime minister or by the government secretary.

(B) An approval in writing by the government secretary that the government carried out a particular action will serve as evidence that it indeed carried out the action specified in the approval.

20. Expert opinion and medical certificate

20. The court may, unless it apprehends a miscarriage of justice, admit as evidence, in writing, an opinion by an expert as to a matter of science, research, art or professional knowledge (hereinafter referred to as an "opinion") and a certificate by a physician as to the state of health of a person (hereinafter referred to as a "medical certificate").

21. Presumption as to signature

21. The signature appearing on an opinion or medical certificate prepared in Israel is presumed genuine so long as the contrary has not been proved.

22. Opinion and medical certificate prepared outside Israel

22. A court shall not admit as evidence an opinion or medical certificate prepared outside Israel unless it bears confirmation by a consular or diplomatic representative of Israel –

(1) that the signature on the opinion or medical certificate is authentic;

(2) that under the laws of the place where the opinion or medical certificate was prepared the expert or physician is liable to punishment for any false statement that may be contained therein.

23. Certificate by public servant

23. The court may, unless it apprehends a miscarriage of justice, admit as evidence a certificate concerning anything recorded in an official document. The certificate shall be signed by the public servant who made the record or did the act or received the information recorded or, if he is no longer in the service in question, by the person in charge of the unit in which he was employed.

24. Forms and Regulations

24. (A) An opinion, a medical certificate and a certificate by a public servant shall be drawn up in the forms prescribed in the First Schedule or in forms as similar to them as possible.

(B) The Minister of Justice may, by regulations, prescribe the mode of submitting opinions, medical certificates and certificates by public servants and introduce changes in the forms thereof.

25. Certificates under this article to be treated as testimony on oath

25. (A) Any opinion, medical certificate or certificate by a public servant submitted to the court as evidence shall, for the purposes of Section 117 of the Criminal Code Ordinance, 1936, be treated as testimony on oath.

(B) For the purposes of this section, an opinion and a medical certificate prepared outside Israel shall be treated as an opinion and medical certificate prepared in Israel.

26. Oral examination

26. (a) The provisions of this article shall not derogate from the power of the court to order that an expert of physician or public servant shall be examined in court, and the court shall accede to the request of a party for an order to such effect.

(b) Where it appears to the court that the request of a party for an expert or physician or public servant to be examined in court is vexatious or frivolous, it may impose the costs of the examination on that party.

27. Saving of rights and powers

27. The provisions of this article relating to the testimony of public servants shall not –

(1) derogate from the provisions of any other Law concerning the proof of a fact through a certificate by a public servant;

(2) derogate from any law permitting or requiring a public servant to refuse to give evidence or to refuse to deliver a certificate;

(3) derogate from any law disqualifying, or restricting the admission of, any evidence.

28. Definitions

28. For the purposes of this article, "public servant" means –

(1) a State employee, including a judge, a judge of a religious court, a member of the Government and the State Comptroller;

(2) an employee of the World Zionist Organization and of the Jewish Agency;

(3) an employee or office-holder of any other public body designated by the Minister of Justice with the approval of the Constitution, Legislation and Juridical Committee of the Knesset.

Article D: Public and Foreign Documents

29. Definitions

29. In this article –
"diplomatic representative" means an ambassador, minister, chargé d'affaires, counselor of embassy or legation or first secretary, second secretary or third secretary of embassy or legation, exercising his functions in a foreign state;

"consular representative" means a consul-general, consul, vice-consul, acting consul-general or consular agent, exercising his functions in a place outside Israel;

"public document" means a document of one of the bodies enumerated hereunder, forming an act or record of an act (whether legislative, judicial or executive), or part of the official records, of that body and includes a document kept for record purposes, whether made officially or otherwise:

(1) the State of Israel or the sovereign authority of any territory outside Israel;

(2) a government department, a local authority, a court, a tribunal, another body having judicial or quasi-judicial powers, a notary or any other official body of Israel or of any territory outside Israel (any of these hereinafter referred to as an "official body");

(3) an employee of the State, an employee of the sovereign authority of any territory outside Israel or an employee of an official body (any of these hereinafter referred to as an "officer");

"official printer" means –

(1) in relation to Israel, the Government Printer or anyone proved to be officially authorized to print the document in question or documents of the class in question;

(2) in relation to any territory outside Israel, any printer proved to be the printer for the government or the sovereign authority of that territory or to be authorized as specified in paragraph (1).

30. Proof of foreign documents

30. Any power of attorney or other instrument in writing made or executed in any place outside the area to which the law of the State of Israel applies may, subject to all just exceptions, be proved in any civil cause or matter by the acknowledgement of the parties executing the same, or by declaration in writing by one of the attesting witnesses, purporting to be made either –

(1) before an Israel diplomatic or consular representative and attested by a certificate under his hand and seal endorsed on or annexed to the document proved; or

(2) before a notary public and attested by a certificate under his hand and notarial seal and authenticated by a certificate from an Israel diplomatic or consular representative, under his official seal, endorsed or annexed to the document proved.

31. Not necessary to prove official character of person attesting

31. A document purporting to be attested as provided in Section 30 shall be deemed to be sufficiently proved, and it shall not be necessary to prove the signature or seal or official character of the person purporting to attest the acknowledgment or declaration.

32. Proof of public documents

32. Without prejudice to any other method of proof, a public document may be proved by production of –

(1) the original; or

(2) an examined copy thereof; or

(3) a copy thereof printed by the official printer; or

(4) a copy thereof certified under the official seal or signature of the officer who has the official custody thereof; or

(5) a copy thereof certified under the official seal of the official body which has the official custody thereof; or

(6) a copy thereof certified under the seal or signature of a minister of state or other office-holder of equivalent rank or of an officer of such rank and holding such office as to satisfy the court of the reliability of the certification; or

(7) a copy thereof certified under the official seal of an official body, if the court, having regard to the nature of the document and the body, is satisfied as to the reliability of the certification.

33. Certificate of Israeli representative

33. (A) A certificate by an Israeli diplomatic or consular representative in any territory shall be sufficient evidence of any of the following facts –

(1) that a particular public document is printed by the official printer of that territory;

(2) that a particular seal or signature is the official seal or signature of the officer whose official seal or signature it purports to be;

(3) that a particular seal is the official seal of the official body whose official seal it purports to be.

(B) A certificate by an Israeli diplomatic or consular representative that to the best of his knowledge and belief a particular public document is in the official custody of a particular officer or official body shall be sufficient evidence of that fact.

34. Presumptions as to public documents

34. It shall be presumed, unless the contrary is proved, that –

(1) any public document, Reshumot and any other official publication purporting to be printed by an official printer were in fact so printed;

(2) an officer who certifies under his signature or seal that a particular public document is in his official custody in fact has the official custody thereof;

(3) an official body under whose seal it is certified that a particular public document is in his official custody in fact has the official custody thereof;

(4) a public document purporting to have been made officially by a particular person in particular circumstances was in fact so made;

(5) official seals and signatures on any public document or copies thereof and on any certificates for which provision is made in this article are genuine and that any descriptions of offices held by the signatories of such documents or certificates are accurate.

34a. "רשומות" – ראיה

34A. An item that was published in Reshumot is presumed to have been done properly, and the same applies to any item the government printer has published, even if not in Reshumot.

34b. תאריך הפרסום של "רשומות"

34b. The cited date of the Reshumot edition is the date of its publication.

Article E: Institutional Record

35. Definitions

35.  In this article –
"legal proceeding" means any civil or criminal proceeding in any court in which evidence may be given;

"institution" – the state, a local authority, business or anyone who provides a service to the public;

"business" – including an occupation;

"output" – a defined in the Computers Law, 1995;

"institutional record" – a document, including output, which is prepared by an institution during the course of the regular work of the institution;

"banking corporation" – as defined in the Banking Law (Registration), 1980, including the Bank of Israel.

36. Admissibility of an institutional record

36 (A) An institutional record will constitute admissible evidence for proving the veracity of its content in any legal proceeding, if all of the following are met:

(1) The institution makes a practice, in the course of its routine operation, of documenting the event that is the subject of the record in close proximity to its occurrence;

(2) The method of collecting data on the subject of the record and the method of documenting the record testify to the veracity of the content of the record;

(3) If the record is output – it was proven in addition that –

(A) The way the record is produced testifies to its credibility;

(B) The institution regularly adopts reasonable measures to protect against penetration of computer material and against disruption of the computer's operation.

(B) If the record is output, the date of documenting the data that comprises the basis of the output will be considered, for the purposes of Subsection (A)(1), as the date of the record's documentation.

(C) The directives of Subsection (A) will not apply to a record that was documented by one of the investigative authorities or the criminal prosecution and is submitted in a criminal proceeding by such an authority. This section does not disqualify or restrict the submission of such a record if it is possible to present it in accordance with the directives of Section 39B.

(D) If evidence is admitted under this section, the opposing side will be entitled to conduct a cross-examination of witnesses it summons to testify, in order to refute the evidence, if these witnesses are connected to the party on whose behalf the evidence was submitted.

37. Annulled.

38. Non-compulsion of submitting an institutional record of a banking corporation

38. In a legal proceeding in which a banking corporation is not a party, a banker or an official of a banking institution may not be compelled to submit an institutional record or a banking institution whose content is entered as evidence under this article, or to testify about transactions or accounts registered in the institutional record, unless under a court order issued for special cause.

39. The authority to examine an institutional record of a banking corporation

39. (A) The court is authorized, by request of a party in a legal proceeding, to order that the requesting person be entitled, for the purpose of that proceeding, to review and copy any entry that is in the institutional record of a banking corporation.

39. (B) An order under this section can be issued without summoning the banking corporation or any other party or after summoning them, and the order will be served to the banking institution three full days before the order is to be executed, unless the court has instructed otherwise.

39a. An expert opinion

39A. If the output is a statement of opinion in a matter of science, research, art, professional knowledge or a medical matter, the output will not be admissible as evidence unless it was submitted in accordance with the directives of the law that apply to the submission of testimony on these matters.

39b. Saving of laws

39B. (A) The directives of this article will not qualify evidence that is inadmissible due to another reason that is not the rule prohibiting hearsay evidence, and will not disqualify or limit the submission of evidence that is admissible according to the aforementioned rules or another law.

(B) In this section and in Section 39a, "law" – includes a decided ruling.

Article F: Photographic Copies

40. Definition

40. For the purposes of this section, "photographic copy" means a copy obtained from an original by photographic processes or by some other method prescribed by regulations, such processes or method yielding a durable exact copy of the original, whether in the original or a different size.

41. Photographic copy as evidence

41. A photographic copy of a document of a kind designated by regulations, accompanied by a certificate that the copy was made from the original in the manner and under the conditions prescribed by regulation for that kind of document shall be prima facie evidence in legal proceedings –

(1) in every case in which it is permitted by law to prove the contents of a document by a copy thereof;

(2) where the original has been destroyed by virtue of regulations, under the conditions prescribed therein, and the copy is accompanied by a certificate to that effect as prescribed by regulations for that kind of document.

41a. A copy of an institutional record

41A. The content of an institutional record can be proven by a photocopy of the record.

41b. The status of output

41B. For the purpose of this article, output that is an institutional record will not be considered a copy of the document produced on its basis, but as the original.

42. Validity of laws

42. The provisions of Section 41 shall not be in derogation of but in addition to any other law relating to the admissibility as evidence of a photographic copy made otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of that section.

Article G: Convicting Judgment in Criminal Proceedings

42a. Admissibility of judgment as evidence

42A. (A) The findings and conclusions of a final judgment in criminal proceedings which convicts the accused shall be admissible in civil proceedings as prima facie evidence of anything stated therein if the convicted person or his successor or a person whose responsibility arises out of the responsibility of the convicted person, including a person liable for a debt imposed on the convicted person by the judgment, is a party to the civil proceedings.

(B) the provisions of this section shall not apply to –

(1) a judgment of a Military Traffic Court and a judgment of a Municipal Court which is not given by a Judge of a Magistrates' Court;

(2) findings and conclusions in the sentence, as distinct from the determination of the case.

42b. Inspection of record and other material

42B. Where evidence is filed under Section 42A, the Court may also inspect the indictment, the record and any other material filed in the criminal proceedings if it deems it necessary so to do to clarify anything contained in the evidence.

42c. Rebutting evidence

42C. Where evidence is filed under Section 42A, the convicted person or his successor or the person liable for a debt imposed on the convicted person by the judgment may not produce rebutting evidence, or evidence already heard and filed in the criminal proceedings, save by leave of the court, for reasons which shall be recorded, and to prevent a miscarriage of justice.

42d. Findings and conclusions in incidental civil claim

42D. At the hearing of a civil claim under section 35a of he Courts Law, 1957, the findings and conclusions arrived at in the criminal proceedings shall be deemed to have been established in civil proceedings.

42e. Validity of laws

42E. The provisions of this article shall be in addition to any law relating to the admissibility of judgment as evidence.

Article H: Old Document

43. Old document

43. Where any document purporting or proved to be not less than twenty years old is produced from any custody which the court in the particular case considers proper, the court may presume that the signature and every other part of such document which purports to be in the handwriting of any particular person is in that person's handwriting, and in the case of a document executed or attested, that it was duly executed or attested by the person by whom it purports to be executed or attested.

Chapter C: Privileged Evidence

44. Privilege in interest of the State

44. (A) A person is not bound to give, and the court shall not admit, evidence regarding which the Prime Minister or the Minister of Defense, by certificate under his hand, has expressed the opinion that its giving is likely to impair the security of the State, or regarding which the Prime Minister or the Minister of Foreign Affairs, by certificate under his hand, has expressed the opinion that its giving is likely to impair the foreign relations of the State, unless a Judge of the Supreme Court, on the petition of a party who desires the disclosure of the evidence, finds that the necessity to disclose it for the purpose of doing justice outweighs the interest in its non-disclosure.

(B) Where a certificate as referred to in subsection (A) has been submitted to the court, the court may, on the application of a party who desires the disclosure of the evidence, suspend the proceedings for a period fixed by it, in order to enable the filing of a petition for disclosure of the evidence or, if it sees fit, until the decision upon such petition.

45. Privilege in the public interest

45. A person is not bound to give, and the court shall not admit, evidence regarding which a Minister, by certificate under his hand, has expressed the opinion that its giving is likely to impair as important public interest, unless the court which deals with the matter, on the petition of a party desiring the disclosure of the evidence, finds that the necessity to disclose it for the purpose of doing justice outweighs the interest in its non-disclosure.

46. Hearing of petition for disclosure of privileged evidence

46. (A) A petition for the disclosure of evidence under Section 44 or 45 shall be heard in camera. For the purpose of deciding upon the petition, the Judge of the Supreme Court or the Court, as the case may be, may demand that the evidence or its contents be brought to his or its knowledge, and he or it may receive explanations from the Attorney-General or his representative, and from a representative of the Ministry concerned, even in the absence of the other parties.

(B) The Minister of Justice may make procedural regulations for the hearing of a petition under Section 44 or 45 or this section.

47. Incriminating evidence

47. (A) A person is not bound to give evidence involving the admission of a fact constituting an element of an offense with which he is, or is likely to be, charged.

(B) Where a person has asked to be excused from giving evidence on the ground that it is likely to incriminate him as specified in Subsection (A), and the court has rejected his request and the evidence has been given, the evidence shall not without his consent be used against him in proceedings in which he is charged with the offense of which the fact disclosed by the evidence is an element.

(C) Where a person has elected to testify at his own trial as a witness for the defense, this section shall not apply to him in respect of the offense with which he is charged at the trial.

48. Testimony of advocate

48. (A) An advocate is not bound to submit as evidence any matters or documents which have passed between him and his client or a person acting on behalf of his client and which are substantively connected with the professional service rendered by him to his client, unless the client has waived this privilege. The same applies to an advocate's employee whom any matters or documents communicated to the advocate reached during his work in the service of the advocate.

(B) The provisions of Subsection (A) shall apply also after the witness has ceased to be an advocate or the employee of an advocate.

49. Testimony of physician

49. (A) A physician is not bound to give evidence on any matter relating to a person who has availed himself of his services if such matter reached him in the course of his work as a physician and it is one of the matters which, by reason of their nature, are generally communicated to a physician in reliance on his keeping them secret, unless that person has waived the privilege or the court has found that the necessity to disclose the evidence for the purpose of doing justice outweighs the interest in its non-disclosure. The same applies to a person whom any matter communicated to a physician as aforesaid reached during his work in the service of the physician or a medical institution or as a member of a professional team working with the physician in attending patients.

(B) The provisions of Subsection (A) shall apply also after the witness has ceased to be a physician or to work as specified in the latter part of that subsection.

(C) Where privilege is claimed under this section, the claim shall be dealt with in camera. If the court decides to hear the testimony, it may hear it in camera.

50. Testimony of psychologist

50. (A) An expert psychologist, within the meaning of an order made under this section, is not bound to give evidence on any matter relating to a person who has availed himself of his services if such matter reached him in the course of his work as a psychologist and it is one of the matters which, by reason of their nature, are generally communicated to a psychologist in reliance on his keeping them secret, unless that person has waived the privilege or the court has found that the necessity to disclose the evidence for the purpose of doing justice outweighs the interest in its non-disclosure.

(B) The provisions of subsection (A) shall apply also after the witness has ceased to be an expert psychologist.

(C) Where privilege is claimed under this section, the claim shall be dealt with in camera. If the court decides to hear the testimony, it may hear it in camera.

(D) The Minister of Health shall, with the consent of the Minister of Justice, make an order defining who is an expert psychologist for the purposes of this section.

50a. Testimony of a social worker

50A. (A) A social worker, as defined in the Social Workers Law, 1996, is not obligated to provide evidence about a matter that pertains to a person who requires his service and which has come to his attention during the course of his activity as a social worker and is by nature a matter that is generally communicated to a social worker with the confidence that it will remain privileged information, unless the person has waived the privilege or the court has found that the need to reveal the evidence for the purpose of exercising justice takes precedence over the interest in not revealing it.

(B) The directives of Subsection (A) will also apply after the witness is no longer a social worker.

(C) If privilege is claimed under this section, the hearing will be in camera; if the court has decided to hear the testimony, it is authorized to hear it in camera.

51. Testimony of minister of religion

51. A minister of religion is not bound to give evidence on any matter told him in confession and the disclosure of which is forbidden him by the laws of his religion.

52. Scope of application

52. The provisions of this chapter shall apply to giving evidence both before a court or tribunal and before any authority, body or person competent under law to take evidence; and every reference in this chapter to a court shall be deemed to be a reference also to a tribunal and to any such authority, body or person as aforesaid.

Chapter D: Weight of Evidence

53. Weight of evidence

53. The value of oral evidence and the credibility of witnesses are questions for the court to decide according to the demeanor of the witnesses, the circumstances of the case and such indication of the truth as may appear during the trial.

54. Determination on the strength of single testimony in civil case

54. If in one of the following cases, in a civil proceeding, a court gives judgment on the strength of a single, uncorroborated testimony, such testimony not being an admission by a party, it shall set out in its decision, in detail, what caused it to content itself with that testimony:

(1) where the testimony is that of a minor under fourteen years of age;

(2) where the testimony is that of a party or of the spouse, child, parent, brother or sister of a party;

(3) where the testimony is that of a person interested in the outcome of the casein favor of the party who called him to testify;

(4) where the action is against an estate, a minor, a mentally sick person or an absent person;

(5) where there are other circumstances which, in the opinion of the court, necessitate a detailed statement as aforesaid.

54a. Determination on the strength of single testimony in criminal case

54A. (A) A court shall not convict an accused person on the strength of the single testimony of an accomplice unless it finds something supporting it in the evidence; however, where the accomplice is a state's witness, his testimony shall require corroboration; for this purpose, "state's witness" means an accomplice who testifies on behalf of the prosecution after a benefit has been given or promised him.

(B) Where a court convicts a person in the trial of an offense under Article E of Chapter J of the Penal Law, 1977, on the strength of the single testimony of the injured party, it shall set out in its finding what promoted it to content itself with that testimony.

(C) The provisions of this section shall not derogate from the provisions of Section 11 of the Law of Evidence (Amendment) (Protection of Children) Law, 1955.

55. Testimony of a minor who does not bear criminal responsibility

55. (A) The court that hears the testimony of a minor who does not bear criminal responsibility due to his age, will warn him at the outset in language the minor can understand that he must testify the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

(B) A person will not be convicted based on the sole testimony of a minor who does not bear criminal responsibility due to his age, unless the evidentiary material provides corroboration.             

56. Evidence wrongly admitted

56. When evidence which is not admissible in proof of a criminal charge has been admitted by error or inadvertence, such evidence shall not be used in proof of the charge nor shall any judgment be based thereon; nevertheless, the fact that such evidence has been heard by he court shall not invalidate the judgment unless, in the opinion of the court, the accused would not have been convicted if such evidence had not been given or there was no other sufficient evidence to support conviction apart from that evidence.

57. Contradictory evidence

57. Contradictions in the evidence of witnesses shall not, in themselves, prevent the court from finding facts in respect of which the contradictions occur.

57a. Presumed manufacturer

57A. (A) Where any goods or the packaging of any goods or anything fixed or added thereto bear or bears the name of a producer, grower or packer (every one of these hereinafter referred to as "producer") or the business name or trade mark of a producer or any other name or mark by which a producer can be identified, such fact shall be prima facie evidence that such producer produced, grew or packed the goods.

(B) Where any goods or the packaging of any goods or anything fixed or added thereto bear or bears the name of a distributor or the business name or trade mark of a distributor or any other name or mark by which the distributor can be identified, and they or it do or does not bear the name of a producer, such distributor shall for all purposes be deemed to be the producer unless, upon request, he discloses the identity of the producer to the purchaser or a person legally empowered in that behalf.

57a1. Presumed date of manufacture

57A1. An article of food on which the date of manufacture is not indicated shall be presumed to have been manufactured in the year preceding the discovery of he offense which was committed in respect thereof.

Chapter E: Miscellaneous

57b. The law is judicially noted

57B. Every law is a judicially noted and does not require evidence, if there is no other directive inferred.

57c. Serving by mail

57C. Where any statute permits or requires a document to be served by mail, whether it uses the expression "serve" or "give" or "send" or any other expression, the serving will be considered to be executed, if no other instruction is inferred –

(1) if a properly addressed letter containing the document has been mailed, either prepaid or exempt from postage or bearing a mark attesting that it was sent in service of the state;

(2) at the date on which the letter would arrive at its destination via regular mail, unless the contrary is proven.

58. Fees

58. The minister of Justice may prescribe by regulations the rate of the remuneration which an advocate shall collect for his services under Section 15 and the fees payable for a certification under Section 15 other than by advocate.

59. Regulations

59. (A) The Minister of Justice may make regulations for the purposes of this Ordinance.

(B) Regulations for the purposes of Section 19 shall be observed as near as circumstances permit. The regulations contained in the Second Schedule to this Ordinance shall be in force as far as not varied, or so long as not revoked, by regulations made by the Minister under this section.

60. Scope of application

60. Save as otherwise provided, the provisions of this Ordinance shall apply in proceedings before any court, within the meaning of the Courts Law, 1957.

First Schedule (Section 24)

Form of Opinion

In the ____________ Court of __________________

In the matter between ______________ and_____________ 

Expert's Opinion

Name of expert: _____________________________

Address and place of work: ____________________

I, the undersigned, have been requested by_____________ to state my professional opinion as to the question set out hereunder, which has arisen in court in the matter under reference.

I give this opinion in lieu of testimony in court, and I hereby declare that I am well aware that for the purpose of the provisions of the criminal law concerning false testimony on oath in court this opinion, when signed by me, will be treated like testimony on oath in court.

Particulars of education: ________________________.

Particulars of professional experience: ____________________________

Opinion:__________________________

Date:_____________                       Signature:________________

 

Form of Medical Certificate

In the _____________ Court of ________________

In the matter between  _______________ and ______________

Medical Certificate

Name of physician: ____________________

Address and place of work: __________________

Number of license_____________________

the undersigned, hereby attest and certify that on __________

in _________ I examined X.Y. and arrived at the following findings in regard to him:_______________

This certificate is given by me for submission to the court as evidence, and I hereby declare that I am well aware that for the purpose of the provisions of the criminal law concerning false testimony on oath in court this certificate, when signed by me, will be treated like testimony on oath in court.

Date:___________    Signature: ________________

 

Form of Certificate by Public Servant

In the ________________ Court of _______________

In the matter between  _____________ and _________________

Certificate of Public Servant

Name of public servant: ___________________

Address: _________________________

Name of unit in which employed: _______________________

Description of post: ________________________

the undersigned, hereby attest and certify as follows: __________________

This certificate is given by me for submission to the court as evidence, and I hereby declare that I am well aware that for the purpose of the provisions of the criminal law concerning false testimony on oath in court this certificate, when signed by me, will be treated like testimony on oath in court.

Date: _____________    Signature: _____________ 

Second Schedule (Section 59(B)) Regulations

Definitions

1. In these Regulations –
"person administering the oath" means a register, or a judge of a magistrates' court, administering an oath or taking an affidavit.
"affidavit" includes any document or instrument in relation to which an affidavit is made.

Deponent's name and address

2. An affidavit shall state the full name, trade or profession and address of the person making it.

Form of affidavit

3. An affidavit may be in the first or he third person and may be divided into convenient paragraphs numbered consecutively.

Correction to be attested

4. Any interlineation, alteration, erasure or obliteration made before an affidavit is sworn shall be attested by the person administering the oath, who shall affix his signature or initials in the margin immediately opposite thereto.

Illegible affidavit

5. Where an affidavit is illegible or difficult to read or is, in the opinion of the person requested to administer the oath, so written as to facilitate fraudulent alterations, he may refuse to administer the oath and may require the affidavit to be rewritten.

Signature of deponent

6. An affidavit when sworn shall be signed by the deponent, or, if he cannot write, marked by him with his mark, in the presence of the person administering the oath.

Jurat

7. The jurat shall be written without interlineation, alteration, erasure or obliteration immediately at the foot of the affidavit, and towards the side of the paper, and shall be signed by the person administering the oath. It shall state –

(1) the names of the deponent and the person administering the oath;

(2) the date and place of the swearing;

(3) that the affidavit was sworn before the person administering the oath;

(4) where the deponent is blind or illiterate, hat such is the case and that the affidavit was read over to him in the presence of the person administering the oath and that the deponent appeared to understand it, and where the deponent makes his mark instead of signing, that he did so in the presence of the person administering the oath;

(5) other necessary particulars.

Joint affidavit

8. Where two or more persons join in swearing an affidavit, their several names shall be written in the jurat, and it shall appear that each of them has been sworn to the truth of the matters stated by him in the affidavit.

Alteration of affidavit

9. The person administering the oath shall not allow an affidavit to be altered without being resworn; and if the jurat has already been added, he shall add a new jurat, mentioning the alteration. He may refuse to allow he affidavit to be resworn and require it to be rewritten.

Form of oath

10.  A person making an affidavit on oath shall use the words to the following effect:

"I swear by God that this is my name and signature (or: mark) (deponent points to his signature or mark) and that the contents of this, my affidavit (or otherwise, as the case may be) are true."

A person making an affidavit on affirmation shall use the words to the following effect:

"I solemnly affirm hat this is my signature (or: mark) (deponent points to his signature or mark) and that the contents of this, my affidavit are true."

In the case of an affidavit on declaration – other than an oath or affirmation – there shall be added the words:

"I make this declaration conscientiously believing it to be true."

 

Yaacov S. Shapiro

Minister of Justice

 
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