Written by Darren Lai, Fatin Ismail and research by Sovitra Sukahut Som

Introduction

The latest bill amending Courts of Judicature Act 1964 (“CJA 1964”) — Courts of Judicature Act (Amendment) Bill 2022 (“the Amendment”) was recently passed by the Malaysian Parliament. 

The Amendment
  • The key amendment to the principal act CJA 1964 is the set of limits for the court in hearing appeals for interlocutory proceedings. 
  • Section 28(1) of CJA 1964 was amended to limit the civil appeals to the High Court in cases where a Subordinate Court in its decision: 
    • dismissed any application for a summary judgment; 
    • dismissed any application to strike out any writ or pleading; and 
    • allowed any application to set aside a judgment in default. 

The same limitations apply to any appeal made from the High Court to the Court of Appeal through the amendment to Section 68(1) of CJA 1964.

 

  • The filing of documents and records of criminal appeal trial proceedings can be made by electronic means in addition to the current practice of physical submission. 
  • The implementation of the service of paperless appeal documents and records brings about the new insertion of Section 52A which provides that any notices or documents sent by electronic means shall be deemed to have been served and delivered upon sending them to the appellants or his advocate’s electronic address.
  • To be consistent with the Court’s e-Filing System which requires only one copy of documents relating to appeal to be filed, the following amendments has been made:
    • The reduction in the number of Notices of Appeal to be served to the Court of Appeal from five copies to one copy. 
    • Transmission of papers to the Court of Appeal has been reduced from four copies to one copy. 
  • The right to appeal from the High Court to the Court of Appeal in civil cases has been limited where the High Court has already dismissed any application for a summary judgment or any application to strike out any writ or pleading, or allowed any application to set aside a judgment in default.
Conclusion

The underlying purpose of such the Amendment is to ensure cost-saving and less time-consuming judicial administration by allowing only meritorious cases to be heard at the appellate stage. In spite of this limitation, it is said that a party’s right to appeal and to be heard is not denied as the case can still proceed to full trial.

Published on 13 October 2022

PHOTO BY Wesley Tingey ON UNSPLASH

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