Electronic evidence as a means of evidence in civil proceedings
The article deals with the analysis of electronic evidence as a new means of evidence in civil proceedings. Due to the constant changes of the information environment and the improvement of information technologies there arises the question of consolidating the evidence obtained in the information space. The example of this evidence is the electronic evidence that provides information in electronic (digital) form containing information about the circumstances that matter to the case. There is defined, for the first time, the electronic evidence and the procedure for its submission and investigation at the legislative level. In procedural law such innovations are one of the means of achieving the effectiveness of civil justice, as they facilitate the full, comprehensive consideration and resolution of a civil lawsuit, the establishment of the true circumstances of the case, and the adoption of lawful and grounded decisions by courts, which is the purpose of civil justice.
Electronic evidence is submitted to the court in three ways: in the original, in the electronic copy certified by an electronic digital signature, in paper copies, certified in the manner prescribed by law. Besides, the party submitting a copy of the electronic evidence must indicate that he/ she or some other person has the original of the electronic evidence. It is the responsibility of the claimant to attach to the statement of claim all the evidence available to support the circumstances on which the claim is based (if written or electronic evidence is provided, the claimant may attach a copy of the relevant evidence to the statement of claim). The claimant can submit electronic evidence using the Unified Court Information and Telecommunication System.
In the article, there are highlighted the issues of the concept, nature and types of electronic evidence, the views of scientists on the features and significance of electronic evidence in civil proceedings. Moreover, the article focuses on problematic issues that the legislator should regulate to ensure that participants of the case are able to submit electronic evidence to court and implement their constitutional right to judicial protection. To reach these goals there were analyzed the views of scientists who investigated this type evidence. Unfortunately, the current CCP of Ukraine and other by-laws regulating the Institute of Electronic Evidence do not provide answers to many questions about the use of evidence from purely technical to legal ones. The legislator limited the work only to the general principles of applying a new type of evidence. Therefore, the judicial practice today is controversial when deciding whether electronic evidence is admissible and appropriate. Also in the article there is analyzed the judicial practice regarding the presentation of electronic evidence as the means of evidence to the court by the parties of the case. According to the results of theoretical study, there were made some suggestions to improve the civil procedural legislation of Ukraine.
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