China's Supreme People's Court has now announced a major new ruling. It states that evidence evidenced by blockchains is usable and binding in litigation.
The new decision is part of a series of decisions concerning procedural issues. These decisions regulate the actions of the so-called “Internet courts” of China and have immediate effect.
In the present resolution, the Supreme People's Court has decided:
“Internet courts must accept submitted digital information as evidence if one of the parties has collected it and placed it on a blockchain. Further, they must be provided with digital signatures, reliable time stamps and hash value verification or stored via a digital filing platform. In addition, the authenticity of the technology used must be proven. “
The Chinese city of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, was the first to create an “Internet Court” in August 2017. This court negotiates Internet-related lawsuits on an online platform. The court ruled its first case on the basis of legally valid Blockchain evidence in January of this year.
The Supreme People's Court's recent ruling makes it clear that China's Internet courts are negotiating their cases online. This includes procedures such as the acceptance of the dispute, service, mediation, exchange of evidence, pre-trial preparation, the trial and the verdict. China currently has two other Internet courts, which are responsible for the capital city of Beijing and the city of Guangzhou in the south.
It turns out that blockchain-based innovation is gaining more and more recognition. Now, for the first time, they have been admitted as valid evidence in legal proceedings. The same should apply to smart contracts. These could prove to be a significant upheaval in the legal area in the future. The fixed, timestamped data generation on a blockchain is an ideal piece of evidence. It offers a comprehensible and provable chain and at the same time shows the requirements of the contracts.
However, it must be remembered in this regard that much development work is still pending. Smart contracts need to be even more versatile and provide more opportunities to cover all areas of life. In addition, in civil disputes, for which the smart contracts are offered, there are often practical issues that elude the contract itself. For example, it could be a matter of dispute between the parties as to whether a car was properly repaired or whether mold resulted from the lessee's incorrect ventilation behavior. However, it is very likely that the future will bring solutions to the question of how to prove these circumstances in the digital age through the blockchain. This would also greatly increase the scope of smart contracts.
Earlier this summer, a British Legislative Commission announced it would consider new legal frameworks. This is to ensure that the UK remains “competitive” with companies using smart contracts. That's another sign that the future has already begun.
Sources: Decision of the OVGC (in Chinese), CMS, Law Commission, Pixabay
Author: Peter Joost – Source Post: https://www.kryptovergleich.org/chinas-oberster-volksgerichtshof-blockchain-kann-als-beweismittel-dienen/
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