LL4413 / LL5413 / LL6413
Civil Justice and Procedure
2018/2019, Semester 2
Modular Credits: LL4413 ( 8 ) / LL5413 ( -- ) / LL6413 ( -- )
This course is substantially about adversarial law or the law governing the processes by which substantive rights are effectuated in the course of civil litigation in Singapore. The emphasis of the course will be on how the Rules of Court operate in primary areas of dispute resolution including the key interlocutory stages from the filing of an action until the trial, the trial itself, post-judgment matters and the role of amicable settlement in the adversarial culture. The interrelationship between procedure, evidence and ethics, so important to a comprehensive understanding of how a civil action is pursued or defended, will be analysed. An important priority of the course is to inculcate an understanding of the underlying principles and ideals of procedure so that students are able to consider the efficacy and viability of the governing law in the light of fairness, efficiency and justice.
There will be two sessions a week which will comprise (a) informal lectures (during which questions, discussion and observations are encouraged and welcome at any point in time) and (b) seminars in which we will work together on pre-set questions which you will receive in advance. These questions will be based on the material covered in the lectures. Although there will be no formal presentations, students will be asked to initiate discussion.
Principles of Civil Procedure
(Pinsler J) (Academy Publishing, 2013). [This is the
text book for the course.
It is available on Lawnet
Legal Profession (Professional Conduct) Rules 2015: A Commentary
(Pinsler J, Academy Publishing, 2016). [This book concerns the current ethics rules.
It is available on Lawnet
Singapore Civil Procedure 2018
(Edited by Foo Chee Hock JC) (Thomson). [Practitioner’s work.] [Optional reading]
Singapore Court Practice 2017
. (Pinsler J) (LexisNexis) [Practitioner’s work.] [Optional reading]
Bullen, Leake and Jacob, Singapore Precedents of Pleadings
(Pinsler J, Editor in Chief) (2016, Thomson). [Practitioner’s work.] [Optional reading]
Atkins Court Forms (Singapore)
(updated loose-leaf) (Pinsler J, Consultant Editor) (LexisNexis). [Practitioner’s work.] [Optional reading]
Evidence and the Litigation Process
(Pinsler J) (LexisNexis, 2017). [This text may be useful for its Litigation content from chapters 16-24.] [Optional reading]
Ethics and Professional Responsibility: A Code for the Advocate and Solicitor
(Pinsler J) (Academy Publishing 2007). [Although this text concerns the former Legal Profession (Professional Conduct) Rules 2010, its principle-based approach continues to be relevant. Many of these principles were used or adapted in the new Legal Profession (Professional Conduct) Rules 2015. [Available on Lawnet.] [Optional reading]
Articles will be referred to separately when necessary.*
* Although books and articles (‘secondary material’) may be useful, I believe that there is nothing that can match learning from the ‘ground up’. That is, I want students to first apply their minds to the issues that are raised in the course before engaging any secondary material.
Class participation (which includes questions, involvement in discussion, comments and points raised) is assessed together with a written assignment in the latter half of the course. This component of the total assessment is 30%.
You will also sit for an examination which will be 2.5 hours in length. The examination will include two parts. Part 1: compulsory hypothetical questions and short answer questions (Part 1 constitutes 70% of the examination mark). Part 2: one essay from a choice of three (Part 2 constitutes 30% of the examination mark). The examination component of the total assessment is 70%.
The following topics are scheduled:
2. Pre-action considerations
3. Jurisdiction and powers of the courts.
4. Action and service of process.
5. Appearance and default judgments.
8. Summary judgment and striking out.
9. Injunctions and related orders.
10. Discovery of documents
11. Trial (including preparation and affidavits of evidence in chief)
As this is a new course, it is not possible to be more precise about the actual weeks in which the above topics will be covered. If, as I hope, there is interaction during the informal lecture sessions (see above), more time will be needed to complete topics. If time becomes limited, I may ask you to read the relevant slides in preparation for discussion in the seminars allocated for the pre-set questions and problem solving.
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 12 to 2.45pm.
NUS Compulsory Core Law Curriculum or equivalent. (It is impossible to study common law adversarial procedure without a background in these subjects.)
Students who have not studied the core subjects in a Common Law curriculum. Not open to students who are, or have been, legal practitioners or who have worked in any legal field. LL4011; LL5011; LL6011 / LL4011V; LL5011V; LL6011V Civil Justice & Process LL4281; LL5281; LL6281 / LL4281V; LL5281V; LL6281V Civil Procedure