Interpretation of the Supreme People's Court on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China

Interpretation of the Supreme People's Court on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China

Interpretation of the Supreme People's Court on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China

Fa Shi [2015] No.5

January 30, 2015

The Interpretation of the Supreme People's Court on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China, adopted at the 1636th session of the Judicial Committee of the Supreme People's Court on December 18, 2014, is hereby promulgated for implementation as of February 4, 2015.

Interpretation on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China

(Adopted at the 1636th session of the Judicial Committee of the Supreme People's Court on December 18, 2014)

Contents
I. Jurisdiction
II. Withdrawal
III. Participants in Legal Actions
IV. Evidence
V. Time Periods and Service
VI. Mediation
VII. Preservation and Preliminary Execution
VIII. Compulsory Measures against Obstruction of Civil Actions
IX. Litigation Costs
X. Ordinary Procedure at First Instance
XI. Summary Procedure
XII. Petty Lawsuit to Which the Summary Procedure Is Applied
XIII. Public Interest Lawsuit
XIV. Lawsuit of a Third Party for Revocation
XV. Lawsuit to Object to Execution
XVI. Procedure at Second Instance
XVII. Special Procedure
XVIII. Procedure for Trial Supervision
XIX. Procedure for the Recovery of Debts
XX. Procedure for Public Invitation to Assert Claims
XXI. Execution Procedure
XXII. Special Provisions on Civil Actions Involving Foreign Parties
XXIII. Supplementary Provisions

On August 31 2012, the Decision on Revising the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China was adopted upon deliberation at the 28th meeting of the Standing Committee of the 11th National People's Congress. The Interpretation on the Application of the Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China (hereinafter referred to as the "Interpretation") has been formulated according to the revised Civil Procedure Law of the People's Republic of China (hereinafter referred to as the "Civil Procedure Law") and in combination with actual civil trials and execution work of people's courts.

I. Jurisdiction

Article 1 The "major cases involving foreign parties" as prescribed in Item 1 of Article 18 of the Civil Procedure Law include cases with a large sum of disputed subject matter, cases with complex circumstances, cases in which a party concerned consists of numerous persons and other cases with significant impact.

Article 2 Patent disputes are under the jurisdiction of intellectual property right courts and intermediate people's courts and basic people's courts determined by the Supreme People's Court.
Cases concerning maritime affairs and maritime trade are under the jurisdiction of admiralty courts.


Article 3 The domicile of a citizen refers to the place where his permanent residence is registered, and the domicile of a legal person or other organization refers to the place where the place of main office of the legal person or other organization is located.
Where the place of main office of a legal person or other organization cannot be determined, the registration place of the legal person or other organization is the domicile thereof.

Article 4 The place of habitual residence of a citizen refers to the place where he has continuously resided for not less than one year from the time when he left his domicile to the time of institution of the action, except for the place where he is hospitalized.

Article 5 The lawsuit filed against a partnership of individuals or a partnership association without its own office shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the defendant is registered. Where there is no place of registration and different defendants reside in different administrative areas, the people's courts in the domiciles of any defendants shall have the jurisdiction over the lawsuit.

Article 6 Where a defendant's residence registration has been cancelled, the jurisdiction shall be determined in accordance with Article 22 of the Civil Procedure Law; where the residence registrations of both a plaintiff and a defendant have been cancelled, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the defendant resides.

Article 7 Where a party concerned that has removed the residence registration thereof but has not registered a new residence has a place of habitual residence, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of habitual residence of the party concerned. Where there is no place of habitual residence, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of the original place of residence registration of the party concerned.

Article 8 Where both parties concerned are imprisoned or undergo compulsory correction, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the defendant's original domicile. Where the defendant has been imprisoned or undergone compulsory correction for not less than one year, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of the defendant's imprisonment or compulsory correction.

Article 9 Where several defendants to a case involving claims for support payment, upbringing payment or maintenance payment reside in different administrative areas, the case may come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of the plaintiff.

Article 10 A case of rejection of the designated guardianship or alteration of the guardian relationship shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of the person under guardianship.

Article 11 A civil case with both parties concerned being soldiers or army units shall come under the jurisdiction of a military court.

Article 12 Where either the husband or the wife has been away from the domicile for more than one year, the divorce case as filed by the other party shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of the petitioner.
Where both the husband and the wife have been away from their domicile for more than one year, the case filed by one party shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of habitual residence of the respondent; where there is no place of habitual residence, the case shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the respondent resides at the time of the petitioner's filing of the complaint.

Article 13 For overseas Chinese who marry in China but reside abroad, where the court in the place of their residence rejects their divorce lawsuit for the reason that the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the court in the place where the marriage is registered, and the party concerned files a divorce lawsuit with the people's court, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the marriage is registered or the last domestic residence of either party concerned.

Article 14 For overseas Chinese who marry and reside abroad, where the court in the place of their residence rejects their divorce lawsuit for the reason that the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the court of the country of their nationality, and the party concerned files a divorce lawsuit with the people's court, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the former domicile or the last domestic residence of either party concerned.

Article 15 Where the parties to a divorce case live at home and abroad respectively and both of them are Chinese citizens, the people's court in the domicile of the party residing in China shall have jurisdiction over the lawsuit, no matter which party files the divorce lawsuit with the people's court. Where the party residing abroad files a lawsuit with the court in the country of his or her residence and the party residing in China files a lawsuit with the people's court, the people's court accepting the lawsuit shall have jurisdiction over the lawsuit.

Article 16 Where both overseas Chinese stay but do not settle abroad and one party concerned files a divorce lawsuit with a people's court, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the original domicile of the petitioner or the respondent.

Article 17 Where both divorced overseas Chinese settle abroad and one party files a lawsuit only for the division of domestic property, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the main property is located.

Article 18 Where a contract stipulates a place of performance, the place of performance so stipulated shall be the place where the contract is performed.
Where a contract does not stipulate a place of performance or does not stipulate it clearly, if the disputed subject matter is payment of money, the place where the party receiving the money is located shall be the place where the contract is performed; if the disputed subject matter is delivery of immovable property, the place where the immovable property is located shall be the place where the contract is performed; as for any other disputed subject matter, the place where the party fulfilling obligations is located shall be the place where the contract is performed. As for a contract with instant settlement, the place of transaction shall be the place where the contract is performed.
Where a contract has not been actually performed and the domiciles of both parties concerned are not in the place of performance as stipulated by the contract, the dispute shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of the defendant.


Article 19 For a contract for property leasing or a contract for financial leasing, the place where the leased property is used shall be the place where the contract is performed. Where the contract stipulates the place of performance, such stipulation shall prevail.

Article 20 Where a subject is delivered through an information network under a sales contract concluded by means of an information network, the domicile of the buyer shall be the place where the contract is performed; where the subject is delivered otherwise, the place of receipt shall be the place where the contract is performed. Where the contract stipulates the place of performance, such agreement shall prevail.

Article 21 For a lawsuit filed due to a dispute over a property insurance contract, where the subject matter of insurance is a transport vehicle or the goods in transit, the lawsuit may come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place of the transport's registration, the place of destination or the place where the insured accident occurs.
A lawsuit filed due to a dispute over a personal insurance contract may come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of the insured.

Article 22 For a lawsuit filed due to a dispute over any record in the register of members, request for change of any registered item of a company, the right to know of shareholders, a resolution of a company, or combination, division, capital decrease or capital increase of a company, the people's court with jurisdiction shall be determined in accordance with Article 26 of the Civil Procedure Law.

Article 23 The application for a payment order by a creditor shall be governed by Article 21 of the Civil Procedure Law and come under the jurisdiction of the basic people's court in the domicile of the debtor.

Article 24 The "place of tort" as prescribed in Article 28 of the Civil Procedure Law includes the place where the tort is committed and the place where the tortious consequence takes place.

Article 25 Places where a tort is committed through an information network include the location of information equipment including the computer used to commit the alleged tort, while places where the tortious consequence takes place include the domicile of the infringed person.

Article 26 A lawsuit concerning property damage or personal injury resulting from poor quality of products or services shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court in the place where the products are manufactured, the place where the products are sold, the place where the services are provided, the place of tort or the domicile of the defendant.

Article 27 Where an applicant fails to file a lawsuit or application for arbitration within the statutory term after applying for property preservation before the institution of an action, and a lawsuit arises from loss to the respondent and interested parties, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court that took the measures for property preservation before the institution of an action.
Where an applicant files a lawsuit within the statutory term or applies for arbitration after applying for property preservation before the institution of an action, and a lawsuit arises from loss to the respondent and interested parties, the lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court that accepts the lawsuit or the people's court that took the measures for property preservation before the institution of an action.

Article 28 The "dispute over immovable property" as prescribed in Item 1 of Article 33 of the Civil Procedure Law refers to any real right dispute arising from the confirmation of rights, division and neighbouring relations of immovable property.
The jurisdiction of the people's court for any dispute over a rural land contractual operation contract, any dispute over a house lease contract, any dispute over a construction engineering contract or any dispute over a policy-based house sales contract shall be determined as per a dispute over immovable property.
Where the immovable property has been registered, the place of location recorded in the immovable property register shall be the place of location of the immovable property; where the immovable property has not been registered, the actual place of location of the immovable property shall be the place of location of the immovable property.


Article 29 The "agree in writing" as prescribed in Article 34 of the Civil Procedure Law includes the negotiated jurisdiction clause under a written contract or the agreement on selection of jurisdiction reached in writing before litigation.

Article 30 Where the people's court with jurisdiction can be determined in accordance with a jurisdiction agreement at the time of litigation, the relevant agreement shall prevail; where the people's court with jurisdiction cannot be determined, the jurisdiction shall be determined in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Civil Procedure Law.
Where a jurisdiction agreement stipulates the jurisdiction of not less than two people's courts in the places actually related to a dispute, the plaintiff may file a lawsuit with one of such people's courts.

Article 31 Where an operator uses standard terms to conclude a jurisdiction agreement with a consumer but does not prompt the caution of the consumer in a reasonable way, and the consumer claims the jurisdiction agreement to be void, the people's court shall support such claim.

Article 32 Where a jurisdiction agreement stipulates the jurisdiction of the people's court in the domicile of one party concerned, but the domicile of the said party concerned changes after the conclusion of the agreement, a lawsuit shall come under the jurisdiction of the people's court at the domicile of the said party concerned at the time of conclusion of the agreement, save as otherwise agreed by the parties concerned.

Article 33 Where a contract is transferred, the jurisdiction agreement of the contract shall be valid for the transferee of the contract, unless the transferee does not know about the jurisdiction agreement at the time of transfer or the transfer agreement has any other stipulation and the original counterpart of the contract agrees to the stipulation.

Article 34 Where a dispute over property occurs between the parties concerned due to living together or after cancellation of marriage or an adoptive relationship, and a jurisdiction agreement has been concluded, the jurisdiction of the people's court may be determined in accordance with Article 34 of the Civil Procedure Law.

Article 35 Where a party concerned does not respond to a lawsuit within the period for filing a defence, and the people's court finds that the case does not come under its jurisdiction before the hearing of the case of first instance begins, the people's court shall forward the case in a ruling to the people's court of competent jurisdiction.

Article 36 Where two or more people's courts have jurisdiction over the same case, the people's court putting the case on file first shall not transfer the case to another people's court of competent jurisdiction. Where the people's court finds before putting a case on file that the case has been put on file by another people's court of competent jurisdiction, it shall not put the case on its file again; and where it finds that another people's court of competent jurisdiction has put this case on file earlier, it shall forward the case to such people's court in a ruling.

Article 37 After a case has been accepted, the jurisdiction of the people's court with which the case is filed shall not be affected by the change of the domicile or the place of habitual residence of the party concerned.

Article 38 After a people's court of competent jurisdiction has accepted a case, it shall not transfer the case to other people's courts of competent jurisdiction after alternation as an excuse for the change of administrative area. The appellate case after adjudication or the case brought up for trial in accordance with the procedure for trial supervision shall be tried by the higher people's court of the people's court of original trial; and the case directed for retrial or remanded for retrial by the people's court at a higher level shall be so retried by the people's court of original trial.

Article 39 Where a people's court is confirmed as having jurisdiction upon examination of an objection to jurisdiction, the jurisdiction shall not change, for a party concerned institutes a countersuit, increases or changes claims, unless any provision on court-level jurisdiction or exclusive jurisdiction is violated.
Where a party concerned raises an objection to jurisdiction in relation to a case remanded by the people's court for retrial or a case to be retried as per the procedure at first instance, the people's court shall not examine the jurisdiction.

Article 40 When two people's courts between which there is a jurisdictional dispute cannot reach unanimity upon negotiations and report the dispute to their common superior people's court to designate the jurisdiction in accordance with Paragraph 2 of Article 37 of the Civil Procedure Law, where both courts are basic people's courts under the jurisdiction of the same district or city, the intermediate people's court of that district or city shall timely designate the jurisdiction; where both courts are the people's courts in the same province, autonomous region or municipality directly under the Central Government, the higher people's court of that province, autonomous region or municipality directly under the Central Government shall timely designate the jurisdiction; where both courts are the people's courts in two provinces, autonomous regions or municipalities directly under the Central Government and the higher people's courts cannot reach unanimity upon negotiation, the Supreme People's Court shall timely designate the jurisdiction.
The application for designation of jurisdiction by superior people's courts in accordance with the preceding paragraph shall be made level by level.


Article 41 Where a people's court designates the jurisdiction in accordance with Paragraph 2 of Article 37 of the Civil Procedure Law, the people's court shall make a ruling.
The people's court at a lower level shall suspend the trial of a case submitted to the superior people's court for designation of jurisdiction. Where the people's court at a lower level has made a judgment or ruling before a ruling of designation of jurisdiction is made, the superior people's court shall revoke the judgment or ruling of the people's court at a lower level while ruling on the designation of jurisdiction.

Article 42 In accordance with Paragraph 1 of Article 38 of the Civil Procedure Law, a people's court may forward the following civil cases of first instance to the people's court at a lower level before the hearing of the case begins:
1. cases concerning debtors in bankruptcy proceedings;
2. cases with a large number of parties concerned and inconvenient litigation; and
3. cases of other types determined by the Supreme People's Court.
Before forwarding a case to the people's court at a lower level for trial, a people's court shall report this to its superior people's court for approval. After approval by the superior people's court, the people's court shall forward the case to the people's court at a lower level for trial.

II. Withdrawal

Article 43 Any member of the judicial officers under any of the following circumstances shall voluntarily withdraw from the case, and a party concerned has the right to apply for the withdrawal of such a judicial officer from the case:
1. the judicial officer is a party concerned or a close relative of a party concerned in the case;
2. the judicial officer or a close relative thereof is an interested party in the case;
3. the judicial officer worked as a witness, expert, defender, agent ad litem or interpreter of the case;
4. the judicial officer is a close relative of the agent ad litem in the case;
5. the judicial officer or a close relative thereof holds shares or equity of the non-listed company which is a party concerned in the case; and
6. the judicial officer has any other relation of interest with a party concerned or agent ad litem in the case, which may hinder a fair hearing.


Article 44 With regard to any member of the judicial officers under any of the following circumstances, a party concerned has the right to apply for the withdrawal of such judicial officer from the case:
1. the judicial officer receives the entertainment of a party concerned in the case or agent thereof or takes part in any activity at the cost of the party concerned in the case or agent thereof;
2. the judicial officer asks for or receives any property or other interest from a party concerned in the case or agent thereof;
3. the judicial officer meets with a party concerned or agent ad litem in the case in violation of the relevant provisions;
4. the judicial officer recommends or introduces an agent ad litem to a party concerned in the case, or introduces the case to a lawyer or any other person;
5. the judicial officer borrows money or any material from a party concerned in the case or agent thereof; and
6. the judicial officer commits any other illegal act, which may hinder a fair hearing.

Article 45 A judicial officer who participates in a judicial procedure of the trial of a case shall not participate in any other procedure of trial of the case.
Where a case remanded for retrial enters into procedures of second instance after the people's court of first instance makes a ruling, members of the collegiate bench of original procedures of second instance shall not be subject to the restrictions in the preceding paragraph.

Article 46 Where a judicial officer falls under a circumstance of withdrawal, but he neither voluntarily withdraws from a case nor a party concerned applies for his withdrawal, a court president or judicial committee shall decide his withdrawal.

Article 47 A people's court shall lawfully inform the parties concerned that they have the right to apply for the withdrawal of any member of the collegiate bench, a single judge or clerk, or any other person.

Article 48 The "judicial officers" as prescribed in Article 44 of the Civil Procedure Law include the president, vice president, members of the judicial committee, presiding judge, vice presiding judge, judges, assistant judges and people's jurors of the people's court participating in the trial of a case.

Article 49 The relevant provisions on withdrawal of judicial officers shall apply to clerks and execution officers.

III. Participants in Legal Actions

Article 50 The legal representative of a legal person shall be subject to that registered according to law, save as otherwise provided by the law. The chief in charge of a legal person, which does not need to go through registration in accordance with the law, is its legal representative; where the legal person does not have a chief in charge, the deputy head in charge of the relevant work shall be its legal representative.
Where a legal representative has changed but registration has not been completed, and the legal representative after the change requires to join in an action on behalf of the legal person, the people's court shall permit this.
With regard to any other organization, the person chiefly in charge shall be its representative.

Article 51 In litigation, where the legal representative of a legal person is changed, the new legal representative shall process the litigation, and the identity certification of the new legal representative shall be submitted to the people's court. The litigation conducted by the original legal representative shall be still valid.
The preceding paragraph shall apply to the lawsuits participated in by other organizations.

Article 52 The "other organizations" as prescribed in Article 48 of the Civil Procedure Law refer to the organizations that are lawfully established, have certain organizational bodies and property but do not have the status of legal person, and include:
1. sole proprietorships that have been registered and obtained business licences in accordance with the law;
2. partnerships that have been registered and obtained business licences in accordance with the law;
3. Chinese-foreign contractual joint ventures and foreign-funded enterprises that have been registered and obtained Chinese business licences in accordance with the law;
4. branches and representative offices that are established by social organizations in accordance with the law;
5. branches that are established by legal persons and have obtained business licences in accordance with the law;
6. branches of commercial banks, policy-based banks and non-banking financial institutions that are established and have obtained business licences in accordance with the law;
7. enterprises run by towns and sub-districts that have been registered and have obtained business licences in accordance with the law; and
8. other organizations meeting the requirements set out in the present article.

Article 53 For a branch established by a legal person not in accordance with the law or a branch of a legal person that is established in accordance with the law but has not obtained a business licence, the legal person that has established the branch shall be the party concerned.

Article 54 Where civil activities are conducted in the form of affiliation, and a party concerned requests the affiliate and the affiliated entity to accept civil liability in accordance with the law, the said affiliate and affiliated entity shall be co-litigants.

Article 55 Where, in litigation, a party concerned is deceased and it is necessary to await the statement of the inheritor thereof whether he will participate in the litigation, the litigation shall be ruled for suspension. The people's court shall timely notify the inheritor to participate in the litigation as a party concerned, and the litigation conducted by the deceased shall be valid for the inheritor that participates in the litigation.


Article 56 Where any worker of a legal person or any other organization causes damage to any other person when conducting any work task, the said legal person or other organization shall be a party concerned.

Article 57 Where a party providing labour services causes damage to any other person due to labour services, and a victim institutes litigation, the party receiving such services shall be the defendant.

Article 58 Where a worker dispatched causes damage to any other person when conducting any work task within the period of labour dispatch, the employer receiving the labour dispatch shall be a party concerned. Where a party concerned claims that the labour dispatch entity shall bear liability, the said labour dispatch entity shall be a co-defendant.

Article 59 In litigation, the operator registered on the business licence of an individual business shall be a party concerned. Where the individual business has a trade name, such trade name registered on the business licence shall be a party concerned, and the basic information of the operator of the said trade name shall be marked simultaneously.
Where the operator registered on the business licence is inconsistent with the actual operator, the operator registered and the actual operator shall be co-litigants.

Article 60 In litigation, all the partners in an individual partnership, which has not been registered and has not obtained a business licence in accordance with the law, shall be co-litigants. Where the individual partnership has a trade name as approved and registered in accordance with the law, such trade name shall be stated in legal documents. All the partners can elect representatives, and shall work out the relevant papers for the representatives as elected.

Article 61 Where both parties concerned reach an agreement on a dispute between them after mediation by the people's mediation committee, if one party concerned fails to perform the mediation agreement, and the other party files a lawsuit with a people's court, the counterpart shall be the defendant.

Article 62 In any of the following circumstances, the person conducting the relevant behaviour shall be the party concerned:
1. the party conducts civil activities in the name of a legal person or any other organization that shall be registered but is not registered;
2. the party does not have the authority of agency, overrides the authority of agency or conducts any civil activity in the name of the principal after termination of the authority of agency, unless the counterpart has reasons to believe that the party has the authority of agency; and
3. the party still conducts civil activities in the name of a legal person or any other organization after lawful termination thereof.

Article 63 In the case of amalgamation of enterprise legal persons, for a dispute over civil activities occurring before the amalgamation, the enterprise after amalgamation shall be a party concerned; in the case of division of an enterprise legal person, for a dispute over civil activities occurring before the division, the enterprises after the division shall be co-litigants.

Article 64 In the case of dissolution of an enterprise legal person, before lawful liquidation and deregistration, the said enterprise legal person shall be a party concerned; where an enterprise legal person is deregistered before lawful liquidation, the shareholders, promoters or contributors of the said enterprise legal person shall be parties concerned.

Article 65 For the borrowing of a business letter of introduction, special seal for contractual uses, blank sealed contract or bank account, the lending entity and the borrowing entity shall be co-litigants.

Article 66 For a lawsuit concerning a dispute over a guarantee contract, where the creditor claims its rights against the guarantor and the warrantee, a people's court shall take the guarantor and the warrantee as co-defendants. Where a guarantee contract stipulates a general guarantee and the creditor sues only against the guarantor, a people's court shall notify the warrantee to participate in litigation as a co-defendant; and where the creditor sues only against the warrantee, a people's court may only take the warrantee as the defendant.

Article 67 Where any person without capacity for civil acts or with limited capacity for civil acts causes damage to any other person, the said person without capacity for civil acts or with limited capacity for civil acts and the guardian thereof shall be co-defendants.

Article 68 Where there is any civil dispute between any villagers' committee or villagers' group and any other person, the villagers' committee or the villagers' group with independent property shall be a party concerned.

Article 69 Where a lawsuit is filed for any damage to the remains, osseous remains and name, portrait, reputation, honour or privacy of the deceased, a close relative of the deceased shall be a party concerned.

Article 70 Where, in a lawsuit of inheritance, only a portion of the inheritors file the lawsuit, a people's court shall notify other inheritors to participate in the litigation as co-plaintiffs; where any inheritors as notified are not willing to participate in the litigation but do not clearly express their waiver of substantive rights, the people's court shall still list them co-plaintiffs.

Article 71 Where a plaintiff sues a principal and the agent thereof and requires them to bear joint and several liability, the principal and the agent shall be co-defendants.

Article 72 Where, after a common property right is damaged by another person, and only a portion of the common property right holders file a lawsuit, the other common property right holders shall be listed co-litigants.

Article 73 Where a party concerned that should participate in litigation fails to do so, a people's court shall notify such party concerned to participate in the litigation in accordance with Article 132 of the Civil Procedure Law; the party concerned may also apply to the people's court to add the party concerned as an additional party. The people's court shall examine the application filed by the party concerned, and shall reject the application where the application reason is untenable; or shall notify in written form the additional party to participate in the litigation where the application reason is tenable.

Article 74 When a people's court adds any parties to a joint lawsuit, it shall give a notice to the other parties concerned. Where a plaintiff that should be added has clearly waived their substantial rights thereto, the plaintiff need not be added; where a plaintiff is reluctant to participate in litigation but is also reluctant to waive their substantial rights, the plaintiff shall still be added as a co-plaintiff. Such plaintiff's failure to participate in litigation will not affect the trial or decision of the people's court made in accordance with the law.

Article 75 The "numerous persons" as prescribed in Articles 53, 54 and 199 of the Civil Procedure Law generally refer to ten persons or more.

Article 76 According to Article 53 of the Civil Procedure Law, where the exact number of litigants in one party concerned consisting of numerous persons is certain at the time of filing of the lawsuit, all the parties concerned may elect common representatives, or a portion of the parties concerned may elect their own representatives; where the parties concerned cannot elect representatives, they may participate in the litigation themselves in the case of a necessary joint action, or may file another lawsuit in the case of a general joint action.

Article 77 According to Article 54 of the Civil Procedure Law, where the exact number of litigants in one party concerned consisting of numerous persons is uncertain at the time of filing of the lawsuit, the parties concerned may elect common representatives. Where the parties concerned cannot elect representatives, a people's court may nominate representatives and then negotiate with the parties concerned; where the negotiation fails, the people's court may designate representatives among the parties concerned that file the lawsuit.

Article 78 The number of representatives prescribed in Articles 53 and 54 of the Civil Procedure Law shall be two to five, and each representative may authorize one or two persons as the agent ad litem thereof.

Article 79 For a case accepted in accordance with Article 54 of the Civil Procedure Law, a people's court may issue a public notice to notify the claimant to register with the people's court. The term of the public notice shall be determined based on the specific case and shall not be less than 30 days.

Article 80 A claimant registered with a people's court in accordance with Article 54 of the Civil Procedure Law shall prove the legal relationship between the claimant and the opposing party and the damage suffered thereby. Where the claimant fails to do so, the claimant will not be registered, and may file a separate lawsuit. The judgment made by the people's court shall be enforced within the scope of registration. Where a claimant that has not been registered files a lawsuit, and a people's court affirms the claim thereof, the people's court shall apply the judgment or ruling rendered by an appropriate people's court.

Article 81 According to Article 56 of the Civil Procedure Law, a third party with an independent claim has the right to present claims, facts and reasons to a people's court and become a party concerned; and a third party without an independent claim may apply for participation in litigation or be notified by a people's court to participate in litigation.
Where a third party does not participate in litigation in the procedure at first instance but applies to participate in the procedure at second instance, a people's court may permit the same.


Article 82 In litigation of first instance, a third party without an independent claim has no right to challenge the jurisdiction, waive or alter any claim, or apply for withdrawal of the action, but has the right to institute an appeal where ordered to assume civil liability.

Article 83 In litigation, the guardian of a person without capacity for civil acts or with limited capacity for civil acts is his statutory agent. Where the guardian has not been determined in advance, the persons qualified for guardianship may determine the guardian through negotiation; where they cannot reach unanimity through negotiations, a people's court shall designate a statutory agent for litigation among the persons qualified for guardianship. Where there is no guardian prescribed in Paragraph 1 or 2 of Article 16 or Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the General Principles of the Civil Law of the People's Republic of China (hereinafter referred to as the "General Principles of the Civil Law") for a party concerned, a people's court may designate a relevant organization prescribed in Paragraph 4 of Article 16 or Paragraph 3 of Article 17 of the General Principles of the Civil Law to act as the statutory agent during the course of litigation.

Article 84 Where any person without capacity for civil acts or with limited capacity for civil acts and any other person cannot act as an agent ad litem in accordance with the law, the party concerned shall not entrust such person as an agent ad litem.

Article 85 According to Item 2, Paragraph 2 of Article 58 of the Civil Procedure Law, any relative with a conjugal relation, direct blood relation, collateral blood relation within three generations, close affinity, upbringing relationship or relationship of support may act as an agent ad litem in the name of a close relative of a party concerned.

Article 86 According to Item 2, Paragraph 2 of Article 58 of the Civil Procedure Law, any worker with a legal labour and personnel relationship with a party concerned may act as an agent ad litem in the name of the worker of a party concerned.

Article 87 According to Item 3, Paragraph 2 of Article 58 of the Civil Procedure Law, where a relevant social organization recommends a citizen to work as an agent ad litem, the following conditions shall be met:
1. the social organization is a non-profit legal person organization registered or exempted from registration in accordance with the law;
2. the principal is a member of the said social organization, or the domicile of a party concerned is located in the area of activities of the said social organization;
3. agency affairs are within the business scope specified in the articles of association of the said social organization; and
4. the citizen recommended is the person in charge of the said social organization or a worker with a lawful labour and personnel relationship with the said social organization.
As recommended by the All-China Patent Attorneys Association, a patent agent may work as an agent ad litem in a case of patent dispute.

Article 88 In addition to the power of attorney specified in Article 59 of the Civil Procedure Law, an agent ad litem shall also submit the relevant materials to a people's court in accordance with the following provisions:
1. a lawyer shall submit the lawyer practising licence and certification materials of their law firm;
2. a grassroots legal service worker shall submit the practising licence of legal service worker, a letter of introduction issued by a grassroots legal service office as well as the certification materials that a party concerned is located in the same jurisdiction;
3. a close relative of a party concerned shall submit his identity certificate and the certification materials on his close relationship with the principal;
4. a worker of a party concerned shall submit his identity certificate and the certification materials on his lawful labour and personnel relationship with the party concerned;
5. a citizen recommended by the community or employer which a party concerned belongs to shall submit his identity certificate, recommendation materials as well as the materials proving that the party concerned belongs to the said community or employer; and
6. a citizen recommended by a relevant social organization shall provide his identity certification and the certification materials meeting the conditions set out in Article 87 of the Interpretation.

Article 89 The power of attorney to be submitted to a people's court by a party concerned shall be so submitted before the court session. Where the power of attorney only states "general agency" without specific items of authorization, the agent ad litem has no right to admit, waive or alter claims, conduct reconciliation and file a counterclaim or appeal for the party concerned.
Where both parties concerned in a case suitable for the summary procedure for hearing appear before the court at the same time, and a hearing is held directly, they may orally entrust agents ad litem on the site, which shall be written down by the people's court in its records.

IV. Evidence

Article 90 Each party concerned shall provide evidence to prove the facts based on which such party concerned makes a claim or contradicts the claim of the other party concerned, save as otherwise provided by the law.
Where any party concerned fails to provide evidence or provides insufficient evidence to prove the facts before a judgment is made, the party concerned with the burden of proof shall bear adverse consequences.

Article 91 A people's court shall determine the assumption of the burden of proof on the following principles, save as otherwise provided by the law:
1. the party concerned claiming any legal relation shall assume the burden of proof for basic facts generating the said legal relation; and
2. the party concerned claiming a change or elimination of any legal relation or an impairment of any right shall assume the burden of proof for basic facts of the change or elimination of the legal relation or impairment of the right.


Article 92 Where a party concerned definitely admits any fact unfavourable thereto during trial or in any written materials such as the statement of claim, statement of defence or statement of attorney, the other party concerned does not need to assume the burden of proof.
The provision on self-admission in the preceding paragraph shall not apply to any facts involving identity relationship, national interests and public interests which shall be investigated by a people's court ex officio.
Where a self-admitted fact is inconsistent with an investigated fact, the people's court will not confirm the self-admitted fact.

Article 93 A party concerned does not need to assume the burden of proof for the following facts:
1. natural laws, theorems and laws;
2. facts that are known by all people;
3. facts that are induced as per legal provisions;
4. other facts that are induced as per known facts and routine experience and principles;
5. facts that have been affirmed in the judgment of a people's court that has taken effect;
6. facts that have been affirmed in the award of an arbitration institution that has taken effect; and
7. facts that have been proved in valid notarial documents.
Facts set out in Items 2 to 4 of the preceding paragraph shall be excluded where a party concerned has enough contrary evidence to contradict them; and, facts set out in Items 5 to 7 of the preceding paragraph shall be excluded where a party concerned has enough contrary evidence to overturn them.

Article 94 Evidence unable to be collected by a party concerned and the agent ad litem thereof themselves for reasons beyond their control as prescribed in Paragraph 2 of Article 64 of the Civil Procedure Law includes:
1. evidence that is kept by the relevant national departments and the party concerned and the agent ad litem thereof have no right to consult or take possession of;
2. evidence involving national secrets, trade secrets or individual privacy; and
3. other evidence that the party concerned and the agent ad litem thereof are unable to collect themselves for reasons beyond their control.
A party concerned and the agent ad litem thereof may apply in writing to a people's court for investigation and collection of evidence that is unable to be collected by themselves for reasons beyond their control before expiration of the period for adducing evidence.


Article 95 Where any evidence under the application of a party concerned for investigation and collection which is irrelative to any fact to be proved, is insignificant for proving any fact to be proved or is unnecessary to be investigated or collected for any other reason, a people's court shall not allow the application.

Article 96 Evidence that a people's court deems necessary for the trial of a case as prescribed in Paragraph 2 of Article 64 of the Civil Procedure Law includes:
1. evidence probably damaging national interests or public interests;
2. evidence involving identity relationships;
3. evidence involving proceedings as prescribed in Article 55 of the Civil Procedure Law;
4. evidence that there is probably malicious collusion of a party concerned to damage the legitimate rights and interests of others; and
5 evidence involving procedural matters such as ex-officio addition of a party concerned, suspension of a lawsuit, termination of a lawsuit and withdrawal.
Except for the provisions specified in the preceding paragraph, the investigation and collection of evidence by a people's court shall be conducted as per the application of a party concerned.


Article 97 For collection and investigation of evidence, a people's court shall assign two or more officers thereof. The investigation documents shall bear the signatures, fingerprints or seals of investigators, persons under investigation and the note-taker.


Article 98 Where a party concerned applies for evidence preservation in accordance with Paragraph 1 of Article 81 of the Civil Procedure Law, the said party concerned may make an application in writing before expiration of the period for adducing evidence.
Where evidence preservation may incur losses to others, a people's court shall order the applicant to provide a corresponding guarantee.

Article 99 A people's court shall determine the period for adducing the evidence of a party concerned in the preparation period before trial. The period for adducing evidence may be negotiated by the parties concerned, and shall be permitted by the people's court.
The period for adducing evidence determined by a people's court for a case of ordinary procedure at first instance shall not be less than 15 days, while that for a case of second instance for a party concerned to provide new evidence shall not be less than ten days.
After expiration of the period for adducing evidence, where a party concerned applies for the provision of rebuttal evidence or correction of defects in respect of an evidence source, form or others for provided evidence, a people's court may determine the period for adducing evidence again at its discretion, which is not subject to the restrictions set out in the preceding paragraph.


Article 100 Where a party concerned applies for extension of the period for adducing evidence, the said party concerned shall make an application in writing to the people's court before expiration of the said period.
If the application reason is tenable, the people's court shall permit a proper extension of the period for adducing evidence, and inform the other party concerned. The extension of the period for adducing evidence shall apply to the other party concerned.
If the application reason is untenable, the people's court shall not permit the application, and inform the applicant.

Article 101 Where a party concerned provides evidence after the time limit, a people's court shall order such party concerned to explain the reasons therefor, and require such party concerned to provide corresponding evidence when necessary.
Where a party concerned provides evidence after the time limit for any objective reason, or the other party concerned does not raise an objection to any evidence provided by a party concerned after the time limit, such evidence shall not be deemed overdue.

Article 102 Where a party concerned provides evidence after the time limit intentionally or due to gross negligence, a people's court shall not adopt such evidence. However, if the evidence is related to the basic facts of a case, the people's court shall adopt it, and admonish and fine the party concerned in accordance with Article 65 and Paragraph 1 of Article 115 of the Civil Procedure Law.
Where the party concerned provides evidence after the time limit not because of intention or gross negligence, the people's court shall adopt it and admonish the party concerned.
Where a party concerned requires the other party concerned to compensate such party concerned for necessary expenses of transportation, accommodation, meals, delay of work, witness presence at court to give testimony or other expenses due to the provision of evidence after the time limit, a people's court shall support the requirement.

Article 103 Evidence shall be exhibited at court and cross-examined by the parties concerned. Evidence not cross-examined by the parties concerned shall not be accepted as bases for affirming case facts.
The evidence admitted by the parties concerned in the preparation period before trial shall be deemed as cross-examined evidence after explanation by a judicial officer during court trial.
The evidence involving any national secret, trade secret or individual privacy or that which shall be kept confidential in accordance with legal provisions shall not be cross-examined publicly.

Article 104 A people's court shall organize the parties concerned to cross-examine the authenticity and legitimacy of the evidence as well as its relevance to the facts to be proved, and explain and argue whether the evidence is probative as well as how large the probative force is.
Evidence, which can reflect the true conditions of a case, relates to the facts to be provided and conforms to legal provisions in respect of source and form, shall be accepted as the basis for affirming case facts.

Article 105 A people's court shall fully and objectively review the evidence according to legal procedures, and apply logical deduction and routine experience and principles to judge whether the evidence is probative as well as how large the probative force is in accordance with legal provisions, and announce judgment reasons and results.

Article 106 The evidence formed or obtained in a way that seriously damages the legitimate rights and interests of others, violates prohibitive provisions of the law or seriously goes against public order and good custom shall not be accepted as bases for affirming case facts.

Article 107 In litigation, the facts admitted by a party concerned for the purpose of entering into a mediation agreement or reconciliation agreement shall not be accepted as a basis unfavourable to the said party concerned in subsequent litigation, save as otherwise provided by the law or approved by the parties concerned.

Article 108 With regard to the evidence provided by the party concerned with the burden of proof, where a people's court believes that the existence of a fact to be proved is highly probable upon examination and in combination with the relevant facts, it shall affirm the existence of the said fact.
With regard to the evidence provided by a party concerned to contradict the facts claimed by the other party concerned with the burden of proof, where a people's court believes that a fact to be provided is unclear upon examination and in combination with the relevant facts, it shall affirm that the said fact does not exist.
Where any law has any other provision on standards of proof for facts to be proved, such provision shall prevail.

Article 109 With regard to the proof of a party concerned regarding a fact of fraud, force, malicious collusion, oral will or gift, where a people's court believes that there is reasonable doubt that the existence of the said fact to be proved can be eliminated, it shall affirm the existence of the said fact.

Article 110 A people's court may require a party concerned to appear in court and receive inquiries about the relevant case facts, when it deems it necessary. Before inquiry of the party concerned, the people's court may require the party concerned to sign a guarantee.
The guarantee shall include content such as truthful statement and willingness to receive punishment in the case of any false statement. The party concerned shall affix the signature or fingerprint thereof on the guarantee.
Where a party concerned with the burden of proof refuses to appear in court, receive inquiries or sign a guarantee, and there is no other evidence to prove a fact to be proved, the people's court shall not affirm the said fact claimed by the party concerned.

Article 111 The circumstances under which it is indeed difficult to provide originals of documentary evidence specified in Article 70 of the Civil procedure law include the following:
1. the original of document evidence has been lost, destroyed or damaged;
2. the original is under the control of the other party concerned that refuses to submit the original after being lawfully requested to do so;
3. the original is under the control of any other person that has the right not to submit the original;
4. it is inconvenient to submit the original due to its large length or volume; and
5. the party concerned with the burden of proof cannot obtain the original of documentary evidence through application to a people's court for investigation and collection or otherwise.
In any of the circumstances specified in the preceding paragraph, a people's court shall examine and judge whether the copy of documentary evidence can be accepted as the basis for affirming case facts in combination with other evidence and concrete case conditions.

Article 112 Where the documentary evidence is under the control of the other party concerned, the party concerned with the burden of proof may apply to a people's court in writing before the expiration of the period for adducing evidence to order the other party concerned to submit such documentary evidence.
Where the application reason is tenable, the people's court shall order the other party concerned to submit the documentary evidence, with the expenses arising from submission of the documentary evidence to be borne by the applicant.
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