ADOPTION OF THE COMMON LAW HEARSAY RULE IN A CIVIL LAW JURISDICTION: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF THE HEARSAY RULE IN TAIWAN AND THE UNITED STATES

Ming-woei Chang


In 2003, the civil law jurisdiction of Taiwan (ROC) included the common law hearsay rule in its Criminal Procedure Code. The extent to which criminal trials in Taiwan will become accusatorial by adopting the hearsay rule attracts the attention of legal professionals in Taiwan. In addition to discussing the most significant accusatorial developments of the hearsay rule in the history of American criminal procedure, this study intends to identify the significance of the adoption of the hearsay rule in Taiwan. As there is no jury trial in Taiwan and the ROC Criminal Law retains its inquisitorial tradition, merely adopting the hearsay rule in this civil law jurisdiction would not result in a strictly accusatorial trial system. Nevertheless, the adoption of the common law hearsay rule in Taiwan is meaningful. It gives the accused in Taiwan the fundamental human right to confrontation, which was rarely seen in practice before.


Cite as: Ming-woei Chang, Adoption of the Common Law Hearsay Rule in a Civil Law Jurisdiction: a Comparative Study of the Hearsay Rule in Taiwan and the United States, vol 10.2 ELECTRONIC JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE LAW, (October 2006), <http://www.ejcl.org/102/art102-1.pdf>.

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