Q&A 2019-014
Rule 66, Reopening a Hearing
 If the national authority decides that the new and timely delivered evidence is also significant and might have led the protest committee to change its decision, it may reverse the decision of the protest committee and order that the hearing be reopened.
Rule 66 provides for the reopening of a hearing under various circumstances, including when significant new evidence becomes available.

Question 1
When a protest committee receives a request from a party to reopen a hearing, alleging that there is significant new evidence, how should it respond to that request?

Answer 1
Upon receiving a request to reopen a hearing, the protest committee should determine:
- if the request is timely under rule 66.
- if the evidence is new, including any evidence concerning the last sentence of rule 63.3(b). See rule M4.2 and case 115.
- if the evidence is significant and might lead the protest committee to change its decision.

When all of the above requirements are met, the protest committee should decide to reopen the hearing.

Question 2
How do rules 61, 63.1, 63.2 and 65 apply in the circumstances?

Answer 2
Rules 61 and 63.1 apply only to a hearing and not to a request to reopen a hearing.

Rule 63.2 is not applicable to a request to reopen a hearing but if the protest committee decides to reopen a hearing, rule 63.2 requires that the parties are notified of the time and place of the reopening and are allowed reasonable time to prepare for it.

Rule 65 applies to both an original hearing and a reopened hearing. Although the requirement does not apply to a request to reopen a hearing, it is a well-established good practice to inform the party requesting a reopening of the outcome when the reopening is denied.

Question 3
Does a protest committee fail to comply with rule 66 if it does not consider the alleged new evidence submitted with a request for reopening a hearing?

Answer 3
If the protest committee determines that either the request is not timely or the evidence is not new, it is not required to consider its significance. When the evidence is new and the request is timely, the protest committee should consider it. See answer 1.

Question 4
May a request for redress be based on an improper action or omission of a protest committee in relation to rule 66?

Answer 4
No. A boat may not request redress if she was a party to the hearing. See rule 62.1(a).
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