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Division 1.-Repeal and Interpretation.

1. Citation.

These Rules may be cited as the Rules of the National Court of Justice or by the shorter form National Court Rules.

2. Application.

These Rules shall apply to all proceedings commenced or instituted on or after the commencement date, with the exception of Order 21.

3. Repeal and saving.

(1) All Rules of Court of the National Court other than Rules created by legislation dealing with specific areas of jurisdiction are repealed on the commencement date but subject to any exception specified in the Notice of Commencement.

(2) Subject to Rule 4 of this Order, the repeal effected by Sub-rule (1) does not affect the validity of any proceedings taken under the rules so repealed, or a right, privilege, obligation or liability acquired, accrued or incurred under any of those rules, or a legal proceeding or remedy in respect of such a right, privilege, obligation or liability.

4. Pending proceedings.

A proceeding pending and a judgement, decree or order given or made before the commencement date, being of a kind to which these Rules apply, shall be treated as if pending, given or made under these Rules, and may be proceeded with, enforced, varied, revised or otherwise dealt with accordingly, subject to any special order or direction made or given by the Court in a particular case.

5. Parts.

These Rules are divided into Parts, Orders, Divisions and Rules as follows: -


ORDER 1-Interpretative Matters.

Division 1-Repeal and Interpretation rr. 1-6

Division 2-General rr. 7-12

Division 3-Time rr 13-16

ORDER 2-Administrative Matters.

Division 1-Sittings and Vacations rr. 1-3

Division 2-The Registry rr. 4-21

Division 3-Documents rr. 22-30

Division 4-Sheriff rr. 31-32

Division 5-Solicitors rr. 33-40

Division 6-Fees rr. 41-43

Division 7-Funds in Court rr 44-54


ORDER 3-Discovery Before Suit rr. 1-4

ORDER 4-Commencement of Proceedings.

Division 1-Mode of Beginning Civil Proceedings rr 1-6

Division 2-Originating Process Generally rr. 7-15

Division 3-Writ of Summons rr. 16-22

Division 4-Originating Summons rr. 23-36

Division 5-Motions rr. 37-48

ORDER 5-Parties and Causes of Action.

Division 1-Joinder of Causes of Action and Parties rr. 1-17

Division 2-Disability rr. 18-32

Division 3-Business Names rr. 33-40

ORDER 6-Service of Documents.

Division 1-Service Generally rr. 1-18

Division 2-Service Outside Papua New Guinea rr. 19-23

Division 3-Procedure for Effecting Service Outside Papua New Guinea rr. 24-31

Division 4-Service in Papua New Guinea of External Process rr. 32-37

ORDER 7-Notice of Intention to Defend rr. 1-13

ORDER 8-Pleadings.

Division l-Preliminary rr. 1-28

Division 2-Particulars rr. 29-36

Division 3-Cross-claims rr. 37-49

Division 4-Amendment rr. 50-59

Division 5-Withdrawal and Discontinuance rr. 60-67

Division 6-Payment into Court rr. 68-82

Division 7-Defamation rr. 83-91

ORDER 9-Discovery, Interrogatories and Admissions.

Division 1-Discovery and Inspection of Documents rr. 1-16

Division 2-Interrogatories rr. 17-27

Division 3-Admissions rr. 28-35

Division 4-Medical Examination, Inspection of Property etc. rr. 36-46

ORDER 10-Trial.

Division 1-Setting Down for Trial rr. 1-9

Division 2-Trial rr. 10-16

Division 3-Assessment rr. 17-19

Division 4-Separate Decision of Questions rr. 20-24

ORDER 10A-Commercial List Rules rr. 1-25.

ORDER 11-Evidence.

Division 1-Summonses to Give Evidence rr. 1-7

Division 2-Evidence by Deposition rr. 8-20

Division 3-Affidavits rr. 21-28

ORDER 12-Judgements and Orders.

Division l-General rr. 1-9

Division 2-Minutes and Entry rr. 10-23

Division 3-Default Judgement rr. 24-36

Division 4 Summary Disposal rr. 37-43

ORDER 13-Enforcement of Judgements.

Division 1-General rr. 1-12

Division 2-Discovery in Aid of Enforcement rr. 13-16

Division 3-Writs of Execution-General rr. 17-26

Division 4-Levy of Property rr. 27-34

Division 5-Sheriff's Interpleader rr. 35-40

Division 6-Sheriff's Rules rr. 41-52

Division 7-Garnishee Proceedings rr. 53-65

Division 8-Charging and Stop Orders rr. 66-67

Division 9-Enforcement of External Judgements rr. 68-75

ORDER 14-Miscellaneous Powers of Court.

Division 1-Accounts and Inquiries-General rr. 1-8

Division 2-Interim Preservation, etc. rr. 9-16

Division 3-Receivers rr. 17-23

Division 4-Security rr. 24-31

Division 5-Disposal of Land rr. 32-36

Division 6-Contempt of Court rr. 37-50

Division 7-Interpleader rr. 51-60

Division 8-Arbitration rr. 61-72

ORDER 15-Administration and Trusts. rr. 1-9

ORDER 16-Applications for Judicial Review. rr. 1-12

ORDER 17-Applications for Habeas Corpus. rr. 1-10


ORDER 18-Appeal Rules.

Division 1-Appeals from Local Courts rr. 1-14

Division 2-Taxation Appeals rr. 14A-24


ORDER 19-Probate Rules.

Division 1-Preliminary rr. 1-4

Division 2-Registrar rr. 5-6

Division 3-Non-contentious Proceedings for Grant or Resealing rr. 7-27

Division 4-Administration During Minority rr. 28-30

Division 5-Application by Creditors for Administration rr. 31-33

Division 6-Contentious Proceedings for Grant or resealing rr. 34-36

Division 7-Proceedings for Revocation of Grant rr. 37-42

Division 8-Contentious Proceedings Generally rr. 43-44

Division 9-Citations rr. 45-59

Division 10-Caveats rr. 60-69

Division 11-Grant of Probate or Administration on presumption of Death rr. 70-71

Division 12-Inventory, Accounts and Commission rr. 72-87

Division 13-Administration of Small Estates rr. 88-92


ORDER 20-Infants and Families.

Division 1-Preliminary rr. 1-2

Division 2-Custody and Guardianship of Infants r. 3

Division 3-Adoption of Children rr. 4-12

Division 4-Testator's Family Maintenance rr. 14-22


ORDER 21-Admiralty Proceedings. rr. 1-42


ORDER 22-Costs.

Division 1.-Preliminary rr. 1-5

Division 2.-General rr. 6-37

Division 3.-Taxing Officer rr. 38-42

Division 4.-Taxation rr. 43-62

Division 5.-Miscellaneous rr. 63-45


ORDER 23-Human Rights rr. 1-12.

6. Interpretation.

(1) In these Rules, unless the contrary intention appears -

Act means a Constitutional Law or an Act of the Parliament as those terms are defined in Section Sch. 1.2 of the Constitution;

the Administration means the Administration or Government of Papua New Guinea;

barrister means a person admitted to practice as a lawyer under the Lawyers Act 1986;

the commencement date means 4 July 1983, being the date on which (with the exception of Order 21) these Rules came into force;

convention means a convention made on behalf of Papua New Guinea with the King or other Head of State of a foreign country regarding legal proceedings in civil and commercial matters;

convention country means a foreign country to which a convention applies; corporation includes any artificial person;

counsel means a person admitted to practice as a lawyer under the Lawyers Act 1986;

Court means a Judge or acting Judge of the National Court;

the Court means the National Court of Justice of Papua New Guinea and includes a Judge or two or more Judges when exercising the jurisdiction of the Court or his or their jurisdiction, powers or functions as a Judge or Judges under any Act or under these Rules;

disabled person means a minor or a mentally disordered person; document includes any record of information, whether legible by eye or not;

examiner means an officer of the Court or other person appointed under Order 11 Division 2 for the examination on oath before him of any person;

folio means 100 words, five figures being counted as one word;

funds includes money, debentures, stock, shares and other securities and investments;

guardian at law means the guardian of a defendant who is a disabled person,

Minister for Justice means the Minister for Justice for Papua New Guinea and includes an acting Minister for Justice;

next friend means a person who is a plaintiff on behalf of a disabled person;

notice means notice in writing;

office of the Registrar means the offices of the Court, and includes a sub-registry of the Court;

officer, in relation to a corporation, includes a director and any person having (whether alone or with others) powers of management, direction or control of the corporation;

originating process means a writ of summons, or an originating summons or, where a cross-claim is made against a person not previously a party to the proceedings in which the cross-claim is made, the cross-claim;

pay, in relation to funds, includes transfer, deposit and delivery;

person bound, in relation to judgement or order, means a person required by the judgement or order -

(a) to pay money; or

(b) to give possession of land; or

(c) to deliver goods (with or without the alternative of paying the assessed value of the goods); or

(d) to do any other act; or

(e) to abstain from doing any act;

pleading does not include a writ of summons, an originating summons or a notice of motion;

probate action means an action for the grant of probate of the will, or letters of administration of the estate, of a deceased person, or for the revocation of such a grant or for a decree pronouncing for or against the validity of an alleged will, not being an action which is non- contentious or common form probate business;

Registrar -

(a) means the Registrar of the Court; and

(b) includes an acting, deputy or assistant Registrar;

Registrar's office means the offices of the Court, and includes a sub-registry of the Court;

Registry means the offices of the Court, and includes a sub-registry of the Court;

the Sheriff means the Sheriff of Papua New Guinea;

solicitor means a person admitted to practice as a lawyer under the Lawyers Act 1986;

State Solicitor means the State Solicitor for Papua New Guinea and includes any person acting in that position for the time being;

taxing officer means the person whose duty is to tax costs in the Court; to file means to file in the Registrar's office;

writing includes, subject to Order 2 Division 3 (which relates to documents generally), any mode of representing or reproducing words in a visible form.

(2) For the purpose of these Rules, a claim for a liquidated demand together with interest is a claim for a liquidated demand, whether or not -

(a) the claim includes interest accruing after the date of the claim; or

(b) a rate of interest is specified.

Division 2.-General.

7. Relief from Rules. (1/12)

The Court may dispense with compliance with any of the requirements of these Rules, either before or after the occasion for compliance arises.

8. Non-compliance with Rules not to render proceedings void.

Non-compliance with any of these Rules, or with any rule of practice for the time being in force, shall not render any proceedings void, unless the Court so directs, but the proceedings may be set aside, either wholly or in part, as irregular, or may be amended or otherwise dealt with, in such a manner, and on such terms, as the Court thinks fit.

9. Application to set aside for irregularity.

An application to set aside any proceeding for irregularity shall not be allowed unless it is made within a reasonable time, or if made after the party applying has taken any fresh step with knowledge of the irregularity.

10. Objection of irregularity.

Where an application is made to set aside any proceeding for irregularity the several objections intended to be insisted on shall be stated in the notice of motion.

11. Forms. (1/11)

(1) Subject to Sub-rule (2), the forms in Schedule 1 shall be used where applicable.

(2) It shall be sufficient compliance with any requirement of an Act or these Rules as to the form of any document if the document is substantially in accordance with the requirement or has only such variations as the nature of the case requires.

(3) A form in these Rules shall be completed in accordance with the directions, (if any), contained in that form.

(4) Where the citation in a form of an Act is subsequently altered, the citation as altered may be substituted for the citation of that Act in the form.

12. Procedure wanting or in doubt. (1/13)

(1) Where a person desires to commence proceedings or take any step in any proceedings, and the manner or form of procedure is not prescribed by an Act or these Rules or that person is in doubt as to the manner or form of procedure, the Court may, on application by that person, give directions.

(2) Proceedings commenced in accordance with the directions of the Court shall be well commenced.

(3) A step taken in accordance with the directions of the Court shall be regular and sufficient.

(4) In respect of proceedings to be commenced for directions under Sub-rule (1) application may be made by originating summons.

Division 3.-Time.

13. Month. (2/1)

In any judgement or order and in any document in any proceedings, unless the context or subject matter otherwise indicates or requires month means calendar month.

14. Reckoning. (2/2)

(1) Any period of time fixed by these Rules or by any judgement or order, or by any document in any proceedings, shall be reckoned in accordance with this Rule.

(2) Where a time of one day or a longer time is to be reckoned by reference to a given day or event, the given day or the day of the given event shall not be counted.

(3) Where, apart from this sub-rule, the period in question, being a period of five days or less, would include a day on which the Registry is closed, that day shall be excluded.

(4) Where the last day for doing a thing is a day on which the Registry is closed, the thing may be done on the next day on which the Registry is open.

15. Extension and abridgement. (2/3)

(1) The Court may, on terms, by order extend or abridge any time fixed by the Rules or by any judgement or order.

(2) The Court may extend time under Sub-rule (1) as well after as before the time expires whether or not an application for the extension is made before the time expires.

(3) The period within which a person is required by these Rules or by any order to serve, file or amend any pleading may be extended by consent without an order for extension.

16. Fixing times. (2/4)

Where no time is fixed by these Rules or by any judgement or order of the Court for the doing of anything in or in connection with any proceedings, the Court may, by order, fix the time within which the thing is to be done.

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