PROCEEDINGS IN COURT
AUDITORS, REFEREES, AND TRIALS
Whenever in an action pending in the superior court an investigation of accounts or an examination of vouchers is necessary or the issues as to damages are complex and intricate, one or more auditors may be appointed to hear the parties, examine their vouchers and evidence, state the account or damages and report upon such matters therein as may be ordered by the court.
Source. RS 189:1. CS 202:1. GS 212:1. GL 231:1. PS 227:1. PL 339:1. RL 395:1. 1949, 144:1, eff. April 21, 1949.
519:2 In Actions Between Partners or Cotenants.
Auditors may be appointed in actions brought by partners or cotenants against their copartners or cotenants.
Source. RS 189:2. CS 202:2. GS 212:2. GL 231:2. PS 227:2. PL 339:2. RL 395:2.
Auditors shall be sworn, shall give notice to the parties of the time and place of hearing and may adjourn when necessary. They shall all hear the parties, but a majority may report.
Source. RS 189:3. CS 202:3. GS 212:3. GL 231:3. PS 227:3. PL 339:3. RL 395:3.
Auditors may be discharged by the court, and others be appointed, or their report may be recommitted for revision.
Source. RS 189:4. CS 202:4. GS 212:4. GL 231:4. PS 227:4. PL 339:4. RL 395:4.
519:5 Recalcitrancy of Party.
If either party neglects or refuses to appear before the auditor, or to render an account, or to produce such books and papers, and to answer, on oath, such interrogatories, relating to the matter in controversy, as may be pertinent and material, the auditor may certify the fact to the court.
Source. RS 189:6. CS 202:6. GS 212:5. GL 231:5. PS 227:5. PL 339:5. RL 395:5.
519:6 Judgment on.
The court shall thereupon render judgment against such party, as upon nonsuit or default, and, if necessary, cause the damages to be assessed by the jury.
Source. RS 189:7. CS 202:7. GS 212:6. GL 231:6. PS 227:6. PL 339:6. RL 395:6.
The court shall allow a reasonable compensation to the auditor to be paid by the plaintiff and taxed in his bill of costs, if he recovers. The court, however, may order the fees of auditors to be paid by the state.
Source. RS 189:8. CS 202:8. GS 212:7. 1876, 35:4. GL 231:7. PS 227:7. PL 339:7. RL 395:7. RSA 519:7. 1983, 383:43, eff. July 1, 1984.
Upon the report of an auditor, either party may elect to try the cause by the jury, and upon such trial the report shall be given in evidence, subject to be impeached by either party.
Source. RS 189:5. CS 202:5. GS 212:8. GL 231:8. PS 227:8. PL 339:8. RL 395:8.
The superior court with the consent of the parties shall, and without the consent of the parties may, commit to one or more referees any cause at law or in equity, or the determination of any question of fact pending in court wherein the parties are not, as matter of right, entitled to a trial by jury; and with the consent of the parties shall so commit any other cause or the determination of any other question of fact.
Source. Const. pt. 1, art. 20. 1874, 97:13. 1875, 35:2. 1876, 35:1, 2. 1877, 20:1. GL 231:9, 10. PS 227:9. PL 339:9. RL 395:9. RSA 519:9. 1967, 132:30, eff. July 18, 1967.
Referees shall proceed in all cases, unless the parties otherwise agree, according to the rules of law or of equity, as the case may be, and according to the practice in court, and shall report their decision as soon as may be to the court.
Source. GL 231:11. PS 227:10. PL 339:10. RL 395:10.
If either party shall request it they shall state specifically all matters of fact found by them to have been proved, and their rulings upon all questions of law.
Source. GL 231:11. PS 227:10. PL 339:11. RL 395:11.
Reports of referees may be recommitted to the same or other referee or referees, or such judgment may be rendered thereon as the law and facts require.
Source. 1876, 35:1, 2. GL 231:11. PS 227:11. PL 339:12. RL 395:12.
The court, acting as a body, may make rules to regulate the practice and proceedings before referees and may fix the times and places for their hearings.
Source. 1877, 20:2. GL 231:12. PS 227:12. PL 339:13. RL 395:13. 1951, 221:10, eff. Aug. 15, 1951.
The referees may impose costs upon either party as terms for delay, postponement or continuance, subject to revision by the court.
Source. 1877, 20:2. GL 231:12. PS 227:12. PL 339:14. RL 395:14.
The court shall allow a reasonable compensation to referees for their services and expenses, which shall be paid by the state.
Source. 1874, 97:13. 1876, 35:1, 2. GL 231:13. 1881, 94:1. 1889, 80:1. PS 227:13. PL 339:15. RL 395:15. RSA 519:15. 1983, 383:44, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
519:16 Justices Ineligible.
No justice of the superior court shall be auditor or referee in any cause pending in the court.
Source. 1881, 55:2. PS 227:14. PL 339:16. RL 395:16.
Trial by Jury
519:17 Right of Corporations or Municipalities to.
Whenever a municipal or other corporation or a quasi corporation is a party to an action the parties to such action shall have the same right of trial by jury that any other party has under the constitution.
Source. 1881, 106:1. PS 227:15. PL 339:17. RL 395:17.
A jury shall be impanelled for the trial of every cause to be tried in that mode, to be drawn from the whole number of jurors in attendance not engaged in another cause.
Source. 1859, 2213:1. GS 212:9. GL 231:14. PS 227:16. PL 339:18. RL 395:18.
Each party in a civil cause is entitled to three peremptory challenges of jurors drawn for the trial. The peremptory challenges shall be exercised alternately, beginning with the plaintiff. When the plaintiff and defendant have exhausted their challenges the court shall take unusual care that the jurors who take the places of the ones last challenged shall be wholly indifferent and impartial and reasonably satisfactory to both sides.
Source. 1859, 2213:1. GS 212:10. GL 231:15. PS 227:17. 1895, 67:1. 1917, 12:1. PL 339:19. RL 395:19.
The superior court, acting as a body, may, by general rules or special order, prescribe the mode of drawing and impanelling the jury, and of exercising the right of peremptory challenge, as may be required to carry into effect the provisions of the two preceding sections.
Source. 1859, 2213:1. GS 212:11. GL 231:16. PS 227:18. PL 339:20. RL 395:20. 1951, 221:11, eff. Aug. 15, 1951.
In the trial of actions involving questions of right to real estate, or in which the examination of places or objects may aid the jury in understanding the testimony, the court, on motion of either party, may, in their discretion, direct a view of the premises by the jury, under such rules as they may prescribe.
Source. RS 188:1. CS 200:1. GS 212:12. GL 231:17. PS 227:19. PL 339:21. RL 395:21.
519:22 Costs of View.
The costs of such view shall be subject to such adjudication, as to the whole or any part thereof, as the court may deem equitable.
Source. RS 188:1. CS 200:1. GS 212:13. GL 231:18. PS 227:20. PL 339:22. RL 395:22.
519:23 Equity Issues.
The court may direct proper issues to be framed for the trial by a jury of any question of fact arising in a suit in equity or other proceeding pending in the court.
Source. GS 212:14. GL 231:19. PS 227:21. PL 339:23. RL 395:23.
519:23-a Right of Accused.
In all criminal proceedings the court shall permit the defense to inform the jury of its right to judge the facts and the application of the law in relation to the facts in controversy.
Source. 2012, 243:2, eff. Jan. 1, 2013.
Accommodations for Juries
The county commissioners shall furnish at least one room in each court house where jury trials are held with twelve substantial and comfortable seats, and convenient desks, for the use of jurors when deliberating. The court may, in its discretion and subject to such rules as it may prescribe, permit women jurors to use a designated rest room or lavatory situated in any part of the court house; and the temporary separation of women jurors from the remainder of the jury for such purposes shall not work a mistrial in any civil or criminal case, provided that women jurors shall be accompanied by a sheriff or his deputy in case of necessity to use such room or lavatory after a case has been finally committed to the jury for deliberation thereon.
Source. 1917, 11:1. PL 339:24. RL 395:24. 1947, 95:2, eff. July 1, 1947.
Jurors shall not be required to continue their deliberations without sleep and rest later than 12:00 in the evening. At that hour, or earlier, under such safeguards and conditions as the court may direct, they shall be afforded suitable opportunity for sleep and rest, at the expense of the state, for at least 8 hours before again taking up their deliberations. No separation for sleep or rest of men and women serving upon any jury shall work a mistrial in any civil or criminal case, if such jury is at all times in charge of a sheriff.
Source. 1917, 11:2. PL 339:25. RL 395:25. 1947, 95:3. RSA 519:25. 1983, 383:45, eff. July 1, 1984.
519:25-a Recess During Deliberations.
Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, the court in its discretion may declare a recess during the deliberations of the jury to allow the jurors to return to their homes. Such deliberations shall be resumed as ordered by the court. No separation for sleep or rest of the jurors during such recess shall be grounds for a mistrial in any civil or criminal case, provided that such jurors shall have been cautioned by the court not to discuss the case with any other person during such recess.
Source. 1973, 249:1, eff. Aug. 18, 1973.
The superior court, acting as a body, shall appoint such official court stenographers as it deems necessary, in accordance with personnel procedures established by the supreme court. The salaries of each stenographer shall be paid by the state.
Source. 1895, 30:1. 1919, 79:1. 1925, 38:1. PL 339:26. RL 395:26. 1947, 176:1. 1949, 95:1. 1951, 221:12. 1953, 257:1. RSA 519:26. 1955, 271:1. 1957, 129:1; 140:1. 1961, 221:14. 1963, 260:3. 1965, 40:1. 1983, 383:46, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
The state classification plan shall not apply to the state court stenographers as provided under the preceding section.
Source. 1947, 176:5, eff. July 1, 1947.
519:28 Transcripts After Trial.
A court stenographer shall make for the use of the court and parties, after any trial, whenever ordered by the court, a true report of all proceedings, and the court may order the original notes to be filed. Upon request of either party, the original stenographic notes, and a duly certified copy of them written out in full, shall, as soon as practicable, be placed on file.
Source. 1895, 30:1. 1919, 79:1. 1925, 38:2. PL 339:27. RL 395:27. 1947, 176:2, eff. July 1, 1947.
519:29 Repealed by 2007, 119:3, eff. June 11, 2007.
519:30 Fees for Transcripts.
The court, acting as a body, shall fix a schedule of prices for transcripts and for extra copies furnished to counsel or parties and shall order what if any part thereof may be taxed as costs by the prevailing party.
Source. 1895, 30:2. 1911, 34:1. 1919, 79:1. 1925, 38:4. PL 339:29. RL 395:29. 1951, 221:14, eff. Aug. 15, 1951.
519:31 Stenographic Hire.
The superior court may employ such additional part time stenographic assistance as it may require, and the supreme court shall set the per diem salary they shall be paid. They shall be paid such salary and shall be reimbursed for their actual expenses away from home by the state.
Source. 1947, 176:4. RSA 519:31. 1955, 271:2. 1957, 140:2. 1965, 40:2. 1983, 383:48, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.
Proof of the Law of Another State
519:32 Statutes, etc.
Whenever the statutes or judicial decisions of another state become material as evidence in the trial of a cause, a volume purporting to be a printed copy thereof, printed by public authority and appearing to be correct copies and generally accepted as such, shall be accepted as prima facie evidence, without further authentication.
Source. 1919, 87:1. PL 339:31. RL 395:31.