Rules Of Natural Justice
The rules of natural justice are the minimum standards of fair decision-making imposed on persons or bodies acting in a judicial capacity. The standard of proof shall be on the balance of probabilities rather than the criminal standard of beyond reasonable doubt.
The rules of natural justice consist of the following elements:
(i) The right to a fair hearing.
(ii) The rule against bias.
The right to a fair hearing requires that an individual shall not be penalised by a decision affecting his rights or legitimate expectations unless he has been given prior notice of the case against him and a fair opportunity to answer the case against him and to produce his own case.
The accused person should be given adequate notice of the allegations against him and of the procedure to be followed so that he may be in an position to make representations on his own behalf, to appear at the hearing, to prepare his own case and to answer the case against him. The time and location of the hearing must also be properly notified to the reported person.
The reported person has a right to attend the hearing and be allowed to present his case. If the Disciplinary Panel is satisfied that the reported person has been given adequate notice of the alleged breach and of the time and location of the hearing, they may allow the hearing to proceed if the reported person fails to attend. However, it may not be justifiable to proceed if the time or location fixed for the hearing is such that the person cannot reasonably be expected to attend.
A person adjudicating on a dispute must have no pecuniary or proprietary interest in the outcome of the proceedings and must not reasonably be suspected, or show a real likelihood, of bias. The rule against bias also provides that a party should not normally be judged by his accuser.
Conduct Of A Hearing