Knowing how to compile and transmit Record of Appeal is very important for every lawyer. Transmitting Record of Appeal can seem scary a thing to do. My mission is not to frighten you, but to serve as a guide for you.
Before we talk about the ABC steps of compiling and transmitting a Record of Appeal, we must understand what a Record of Appeal is.
Simply put, a Record of Appeal (also called a record) is a compilation of every necessary process filed and tendered before the lower court.
Here, I will be discussing how to compile and transmit a Record of Appeal before the Court of Appeal. I will be showing you the steps to guide yourself from asking excessive questions from colleagues or from officers of the Court, which can be embarrassing.
Also, I will not be discussing the substantive area regarding this topic. So this write-up will be purely procedural. For the substantive knowledge, you can see Order 8 generally of the Court of Appeal Rules, 2016 (which is the latest rule as at the time of this writeup). Order 8 deals with compilation and transmission Of Record of Appeal. So let’s go to the task ahead of us.
How to Compile and transmit Record of Appeal – the details:
Compilation of Record
First, you have to know if you are transmitting the final judgment of the court below or just an interlocutory ruling of the lower court. Knowing this will afford you the opportunity to know what is required ahead and prepare you for what you will be compiling and transmitting. In transmitting your Record of Appeal, you have to compile the Record of Appeal.
First, the Registrar has 60 days to compile the Record of Appeal from the day a Notice of Appeal is filed by an Appellant.
However, when the Registrar fails to compile the Record within the stipulated time, the Appellant is mandated to compile the Record within the next 30 days after the default of the Registrar to compile and transmit the Record of Appeal.
Settlement of Record of Appeal
The Registrar shall within 14 days of the 60 days meant to compile the Record of Appeal, inform both parties (Appellant and Respondent) to come to settle the records on a specific day. The stated date for the settlement shall be served by a form. The Appellant shall ensure the Respondent/Respondents is served the form and proof of such service shall be given to the Registrar of the lower court.
Although, in practice, the Register can call parties to settle the Record of Appeal even after 14 days allowed by the Court of Appeal Rules.
The Settlement of Record involves parties choosing/picking court processes from the Court file/Docket that they feel is important or needed for the appeal.
On the day of Settlement of Record, both parties are to be in attendance to settle the Record. It is not uncommon for one party or both parties to be absent on the day of Settlement.
However, this does not stop the other party or the Registrar from settling the record on behalf of both parties.
The registrar shall charge the Appellant based on the assessed settled record for the onward compilation of the Record. This cost shall also include the scanning of the settled Record which shall be put in two flash drives. The amount will also increase if the parties to be served such Record of Appeal are many, as this will mean that more Record of Appeal will be made. The voluminous nature of the settled Record will also determine the amount to be charged by the Registrar.
Transmission of Record of Appeal
To know more about how to compile and transmit Record of Appeal, we must at this point talk about the transmission of Record of Appeal.
If the Registrar is not able to compile the Record of Appeal within the 60 days allowed by the rules, the Appellant will have to compile and transmit the Record of Appeal within the next 30 days of the lower Court Registrar’s default.
However, in practice, if the Appellant is to compile and transmit the Record of Appeal, he will need to write to the Registrar for the onward transmission of all the exhibits in the matter, with the court file/docket if it is an appeal against the final judgement of the lower Court.
However, even if the compilation is done by the Registrar of the High Court or by the Appellant, the following will be needed at the Court of Appeal for the transmission of the Record of Appeal:
- 10 copies of the Record of Appeal (including the certified true copy)
- Proof of service of the Record of Appeal on the Respondent or Respondents (that is the acknowledged front page of the Record by the Respondent or Respondents showing same was received and/or an affidavit of non-service when a Respondent cannot be served)
- Two flash drives (containing the scanned copies of the Record of appeal).
- Letter of transmission (see sample draft below).
- The docket/Court file of the lower court (for all Appeal against a final judgement). N.B: this will not be given to you by the lower court, you only have to liaise with the Registrar of the lower court on how it can be brought to the Court of Appeal)
- All exhibit in the matter (for all Appeal against a final judgement). N.B: this will not be given to you by the lower court, you only have to liaise with the Registrar/Exhibit keeper of the lower court on how they can bring it to the Court of Appeal).
NB: Your Supreme Court email address must be on your Record of Appeal if not, it will not be accepted at the Court of Appeal for onward transmission.
Sample draft of the letter of transmission
5th March, 2019
The Deputy Chief Registrar,
Court of Appeal,
Lagos Judicial Division,
TRANSMISSION OF RECORD OF APPEAL IN RESPECT OF SUIT NO: ID/1722GCM/2018 DIVINE LTD V. THE EXECUTIVE GOVERNOR OF LAGOS STATE & 6 ORS.
We are Solicitors to the Appellant in the above suit and on whose behalf hereby we forward herewith Ten (10) copies of Record of Appeal in the above-mentioned suit and two flash drives.
The said Record of Appeal was compiled by Joseph O. Okusare Esq.
Your cooperation oblige.
JOSEPH O. OKUSARE ESQ.
FOR: LEGAL PANIC & CO.
When is an appeal entered in Nigeria?
You are expected to take an extra Record of Appeal aside the 10 Records of Appeal. After transmitting the Record of Appeal, the Court of Appeal will issue you a certificate of transmission. Your copy of the Record will be stamped and dated. An Appeal is entered when the record of Appeal has been transmitted to Court of Appeal and now on the general cause list of the Court of Appeal
Written by: Joseph Okusare Joci.
Joci is a Lagos based Legal Practitioner. He is the CEO/founder of legalpanic.com and a passionate lover of technology. He is passionate about helping other lawyers accomplish their full potential. He loves to solve basic and complex problems with techie ideas. This has motivated him to co-develop various Apps on Google play-store like the All Laws of Federation of Nigeria (LFN) App, All Crime App, etc. To reach out to him, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org
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