What is the positive impact of the Supreme People's Court's Opinion on Rectifying False Litigation on Civil Procuratorial Supervision?

  Wang Xuanwei

  On November 9, 2021, the Supreme People's Court issued the "Opinions of the Supreme People's Court on Deepening the Rectification of False Litigation" (hereinafter referred to as the "Opinions"), and also released 10 typical cases of the court's rectification of false litigation.

The "Opinions" has a total of 24 articles and more than 5,800 words. Compared with the "Guiding Opinions of the Supreme People's Court on Preventing and Sanctioning False Litigation" (hereinafter referred to as the "Guiding Opinions"), which was promulgated five years ago with 18 articles and more than 1,700 words, the "Opinions" The Opinions have more in-depth research on false lawsuits, more detailed regulations, and stronger guidance for civil judicial activities, reflecting the court's "main battlefield" status and "main force" role in preventing and sanctioning false lawsuits.

Procuratorial organs are also an important subject in discovering and investigating false lawsuits. The Opinions also have an obvious positive impact on the supervision of false lawsuits by procuratorial organs.

  Define the concept and connotation of civil false lawsuit

  Since the rectification of false lawsuits was carried out, a prominent problem affecting this work is that the concept of "false lawsuits" is unclear, resulting in different understandings of what constitutes false lawsuits.

For a long time, there have been different opinions on the question of "what is a civil false lawsuit".

In the 2016 "Guiding Opinions", the Supreme People's Court only pointed out that civil false lawsuits "generally contain" five elements, but did not define the concept, and the unilateral work guidelines of the procuratorial organs lacked the joint confirmation of the court. The authoritative definition in the form of a document is not enough.

Therefore, the problem of unclear concept not only has plagued the procuratorial organs for a long time, but also often leads to disagreements in the judicial work.

  The "Opinions" issued this time finally clearly stated: "Single or maliciously colluding with others, by means of forging evidence, false statements, etc., fabricating basic facts of civil cases, fabricating civil disputes, filing civil lawsuits in people's courts, and harming national interests and society. If the public interest or the legitimate rights and interests of others interfere with judicial order, it constitutes a false lawsuit." Compared with the "Guiding Opinions" in 2016, the significance of this clear statement is: First, it affirms that the unilateral behavior of the perpetrator can constitute a false lawsuit.

This abandons the narrow understanding in the past that the filing of a false lawsuit should generally include the factor of "malicious collusion between both parties", and lifts the restriction for punishing unilateral behavior-based false lawsuits.

Second, it is no longer believed that false lawsuits are generally "for the purpose of evading laws, regulations or national policies to seek illegal interests".

In practice, "law-evading" false lawsuits are only a minority, and generally only appear in areas where policies such as housing purchase restrictions and motor vehicle license restrictions are implemented.

In the vast majority of other false lawsuits, the main purpose of the perpetrator is to infringe on national interests, social public interests or the legitimate rights and interests of others, and there is not necessarily an intention to evade the law.

The third is to affirm that "false statement" can become a means of false litigation.

In civil litigation, it is common for parties or witnesses to make untrue and objective statements.

Some of these are differences of understanding, and some are unintentional faults, but in many cases they are intentional and are fabricated facts.

In the "Guiding Opinions" in 2016, the elements of false lawsuits were limited to "fabricated facts", excluding "false statements", which made it more difficult to identify false lawsuits.

Relatively speaking, the concept of false litigation as defined in the "Opinions" is more comprehensive and reasonable, which is conducive to the further unification of judicial understanding between the procuratorate and the court, which is conducive to the identification and crackdown of civil false litigation.

  Features and focus areas of civil false claims are suggested

  In the "Guiding Opinions" in 2016, it listed five situations that need special attention in judicial practice, namely, where there is a close relationship or a relationship of common interests between the parties, where the amount of the plaintiff's petition is seriously inconsistent with his own economic situation, The facts and reasons on which the plaintiff sued are obviously unreasonable, the parties have no substantive civil rights disputes, or the evidence in the case is insufficient, but the two parties still actively and quickly reach a mediation agreement.

These situations, in fact, describe the presenting characteristics of false lawsuits.

In recent years, with the investigation and punishment of false lawsuits by judicial organs, some new features of false lawsuits have been discovered.

  In the "Opinions" issued this time, in addition to the above five situations, it also added that "the party's self-confidence is not in line with common sense", "the party is burdened with heavy debts but transfers property at an obviously unreasonable low price, and at an obviously unreasonable low price." There are three situations: the transfer of property at a reasonable high price or the abandonment of property rights" and "the party who has experienced the facts of the case but cannot fully and accurately state the facts of the case or the statement is inconsistent".

These additions are very important, providing guidance for the courts to identify false lawsuits, and also providing a reference for the procuratorial organs to carry out false lawsuit supervision.

  The "Opinions" not only sorts out the characteristics of false lawsuits, but also points out the high-prone areas of false lawsuits.

In addition to the areas mentioned in the 2016 "Guiding Opinions", such as private lending, divorce, property settlement, debt settlement, labor disputes, company division and merger, and enterprise bankruptcy, the "Opinions" also pointed out enforcement objection lawsuits, trademarks involving well-known trademarks Disputes, disputes over marriage and inheritance involving demolition and house sales contracts, sales contracts related to macro-control policies such as house purchase restrictions, and disputes over debt-for-things should also be paid special attention to.

These prompts "set the focus" for the procuratorial organs to carry out false litigation supervision.

In particular, the field of enforcement objection lawsuits belongs to "the field of rapid growth of false lawsuits at present".

The "Opinions" make it clear that any objection to the subject of execution based on fabricated facts and an application for participation in the execution of property distribution during the execution process are also false lawsuits.

The Opinion uses several provisions to guide how to prevent and identify false lawsuits in this area.

For prosecutors, this guidance is of great significance.

In the past few years, the number of enforcement supervision cases accepted by the procuratorial organs has increased rapidly, but the supervision level is relatively shallow, and most of them only stay in procedural and flawed supervision, and there are few deep-seated illegal problems behind the superficial phenomenon.

In the future, when the procuratorial organs shift the focus of enforcement supervision to the substantive supervision content such as property control, property disposal, and case payment distribution, they cannot ignore the supervision of enforcement objection, reconsideration, appeal and other enforcement review activities.

When supervising enforcement objection lawsuits, attention should be paid to examining whether the outsider and the person to be enforced have an interest relationship and whether there is malicious collusion, and also pay attention to whether the outsider has enough civil rights and interests to exclude the enforced object. Bear the burden of proof, whether the evidence is true, legal and relevant.

These reminders put forward new requirements for procuratorial organs to carry out civil procuratorial work.

  Clarified the compensation liability of the perpetrators of false lawsuits

  Should false litigants be liable for tort compensation?

This issue has been controversial in the past.

In the past judicial practice, there are three main legal responsibilities borne by the perpetrators of false lawsuits: one is criminal responsibility.

That is, if the perpetrator constitutes the crime of false litigation, he shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not more than three years, criminal detention or public surveillance, and shall also or only be fined; if the circumstances are serious, he shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not less than three years but not more than seven years, and shall also be fined.

The second is civil liability.

That is, the court can impose judicial sanctions such as detention and fines on the parties who have committed false lawsuits according to the seriousness of the circumstances.

The third is civil liability.

bear the consequences of losing the case.

In addition, it is not clear whether the perpetrator of false litigation should bear the tort liability for the infringed civil rights and interests.

  In this "Opinion", the Supreme People's Court clearly stipulates: "If a false lawsuit infringes upon the civil rights and interests of others, the perpetrator shall be liable for compensation." .

Correspondingly, the attention of the procuratorial organs should also be expanded from civil cases with false lawsuits to tort lawsuits with false lawsuits that will continue to appear in the future.

  Among the 10 typical cases of rectification of false lawsuits released by the Supreme People's Court, the case of a company A's creditor suing Shao for infringement compensation is a case of liability for compensation due to false lawsuits.

The Supreme People's Court pointed out in the "typical significance" of the case that if the damage caused by a false lawsuit meets the general characteristics and constituent elements of a tort, it is a tort and should be liable for tort.

Moreover, even if the perpetrator has been sentenced to a criminal penalty for a false lawsuit, he is not exempt from civil liability.

In addition to bearing the risk of losing the case, the perpetrators of false lawsuits are not only subject to criminal punishment, but also bear civil liability for compensation, which is of positive significance for effectively deterring wrongdoers and protecting the legitimate rights and interests of victims.

  Improve the cooperation and cooperation mechanism for the rectification of false lawsuits

  In the "Opinions on Further Strengthening the Punishment of False Litigation Crimes" co-signed by the "two high schools and two ministries" in March 2021, there is one main regulation on the cooperation mechanism, namely "People's Courts, People's Procuratorates, Public Security Organs, Judicial Administrative Organs" Explore the establishment of an information sharing mechanism for civil judgments, rulings, mediation documents and other judgment documents and an information exchange data platform, comprehensively use information technology to discover clues to false lawsuits, crimes, and crimes, and gradually realize information and data sharing of false lawsuits, crimes, and crimes.

In the "Opinions", the Supreme People's Court expanded the cooperation and cooperation mechanism between political and legal units to include the information sharing mechanism for false litigation cases, the transfer mechanism for illegal and criminal clues in false litigation, the coordination and punishment mechanism for cross-criminal criminal cases in false litigation, and the joint rectification mechanism for false litigation. Meeting mechanism and other rich content, and put forward requirements for courts at all levels to actively explore and improve cooperation and cooperation mechanisms with procuratorates, public security organs, and judicial administrative organs. , the orderly connection of procedures, the coordination and cooperation of rectification, and the work pattern of false litigation rectification through consultation and co-construction of the system.”

Behind these contents, we can see the powerful measures taken by the Supreme People's Court against the rectification of false lawsuits, and we can feel the pragmatic response of the Supreme People's Court to the Supreme People's Procuratorate's "No.

  We believe that after the release of the "Opinions", the differences between the procuratorate and the court on the determination of civil false lawsuits will be significantly reduced, the synergy in the prevention and sanctions of false lawsuits will be further formed, and the rectification of false lawsuits will reach a new level.

  (Author: Yunnan Provincial People's Procuratorate)