[USC05] 10 USC Ch. 885: STAY OF JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS
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TEXT OF PART V OF SUBTITLE A (3001 ET SEQ.), EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 2022, CURRENTLY SET OUT AS A PREVIEW

10 USC Ch. 885: STAY OF JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS
From Title 10—ARMED FORCESSubtitle C—Navy and Marine CorpsPART IV—GENERAL ADMINISTRATION

CHAPTER 885—STAY OF JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS

Sec.
8891.
Scope of chapter.
8892.
Stay of suit.
8893.
Stay of proceedings for preserving evidence after stay of suit.
8894.
Stay of proceedings for taking evidence before suit is filed.
8895.
Stay extended or shortened.
8896.
Reconsideration of stay.
8897.
Duration of stay.
8898.
Restricted certificate.
8899.
Investigation before issue of certificate.
8900.
Evidence admissible when witness is not available.

        

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(e)(4), (f)(1), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1838, redesignated chapter 657 of this title as this chapter and items 7721 to 7730 as 8891 to 8900, respectively.

§8891. Scope of chapter

(a) This chapter applies to any suit against the United States under chapter 311 of title 46 for—

(1) damage caused by a vessel in the naval service; or

(2) compensation for towage or salvage services, including contract salvage, rendered to a vessel in the naval service.


(b) In this chapter, the term "vessel in the naval service" means—

(1) any vessel of the Navy, manned by the Navy, or chartered on bareboat charter to the Navy; or

(2) when the Coast Guard is operating as a service in the Navy, any vessel of the Coast Guard, manned by the Coast Guard, or chartered on bareboat charter to the Coast Guard.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 483, §7721; Pub. L. 96–513, title V, §513(43), Dec. 12, 1980, 94 Stat. 2935; Pub. L. 100–26, §7(k)(10), Apr. 21, 1987, 101 Stat. 284; Pub. L. 103–35, title II, §201(c)(11), May 31, 1993, 107 Stat. 98; Pub. L. 109–304, §17(a)(6), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1706; renumbered §8891, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7721(a) 46 U.S.C. 791 (2d sentence). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §1 (2d sentence), 58 Stat. 723.
7721(b) 46 U.S.C. 793. July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §3, 58 Stat. 724.

In subsection (a) the words "wherein a claim is made" are omitted as surplusage. The words "vessel in the naval service" are substituted for the words "vessel in the Navy, or in the naval service" for brevity. No change in meaning results, since the term used in subsection (a) is defined in subsection (b).

In subsection (b) the words "service in" are substituted for the words "part of" to conform to the terminology used in 14 U.S.C. 3.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7721 of this title as this section.

2006—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 109–304 substituted "chapter 311 of title 46" for "the Act of March 3, 1925 (commonly referred to as the 'Public Vessels Act') (46 U.S.C. App. 781–790)".

1993—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 103–35 substituted "(46 U.S.C. App. 781–790)" for "(46 U.S.C. 781–790)".

1987—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 100–26 inserted ", the term" after "In this chapter".

1980—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 96–513 substituted "the Act of March 3, 1925 (commonly referred to as the 'Public Vessels Act') (46 U.S.C. 781–790)" for "sections 781–790 of title 46".

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

Effective Date of 1980 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 96–513 effective Dec. 12, 1980, see section 701(b)(3) of Pub. L. 96–513, set out as a note under section 101 of this title.

Transfer of Functions

For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468(b), 551(d), 552(d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.

§8892. Stay of suit

(a) Whenever in time of war the Secretary of the Navy certifies to a court, or to a judge of a court, in which a suit described in section 8891 of this title is pending, that the prosecution of the suit would tend to endanger the security of naval operations in the war, or would tend to interfere with those operations, all further proceedings in the suit shall be stayed.

(b) A stay under this section does not suspend the issue of process to take or preserve evidence to be used in the trial or prevent the completion of action under similar process issued before the stay.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 484, §7722; renumbered §8892 and amended Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §§807(d)(10), 809(a), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837, 1840.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7722(a) 46 U.S.C. 791 (1st sentence, less applicability to duration of stay). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §1 (1st sentence, less applicability to duration of stay), 58 Stat. 723.
7722(b) 46 U.S.C. 791 (less 1st and 2d sentences and less proviso). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §1 (less 1st and 2d sentences and less proviso), 58 Stat. 723.

In subsection (a) the word "forthwith" is omitted as surplusage.

In subsection (b) the words "of proceedings in pending suits as provided" are omitted as surplusage. The words "does not suspend" are substituted for the words "shall not operate to suspend". The words "of the issues" and "the authority of" are omitted as surplusage. The words "issued before the stay" are substituted for the words "already issued at the time of such stay of suit".

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232, §807(d)(10), renumbered section 7722 of this title as this section.

Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 115–232, §809(a), substituted "section 8891" for "section 7721".

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8893. Stay of proceedings for preserving evidence after stay of suit

If, at the time of certification under section 8892 of this title, or at any time before the termination of the stay based on the certificate, the Secretary of the Navy files with the court an additional certificate to the effect that the issue of any process to preserve evidence or the completion of action on process previously issued would tend to endanger the security of the United States or of any of its naval or military operations in the war, or would tend to interfere with those operations, then all proceedings for the taking or preserving of evidence to be used by either party in the trial shall be stayed.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 484, §7723; renumbered §8893 and amended Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §§807(d)(10), 809(a), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837, 1840.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7723 46 U.S.C. 791 (proviso, less applicability to duration of stay). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §1 (proviso, less applicability to duration of stay), 58 Stat. 723.

The word "stayed" is substituted for the word "suspended" for uniformity and clarity.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7723 of this title as this section and substituted "section 8892" for "section 7722".

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8894. Stay of proceedings for taking evidence before suit is filed

(a) If in time of war, with respect to any claim against the United States on which a suit described in section 8891 of this title would lie, the Secretary of the Navy certifies to the court, or to a judge of the court, in which proceedings are pending for—

(1) the granting of a dedimus potestatem to take depositions;

(2) a direction to take depositions in perpetuam rei memoriam; or

(3) the taking of depositions or production of evidence pursuant to such dedimus potestatem or direction, or pursuant to any other proceedings for the purpose;


that the proceedings would tend to endanger the security of the United States or any of its naval or military operations in the war, or would tend to interfere with those operations, then the proceedings may not be started or, if they have been started, they shall, when the certificate is filed, be stayed.

(b) The time during which a claimant may file suit of the type described in section 8891 of this title is computed by excluding the time during which a stay under this section or any extension of such a stay is in effect.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 484, §7724; renumbered §8894 and amended Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §§807(d)(10), 809(a), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837, 1840.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7724 46 U.S.C. 792 (less applicability to duration of stay). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §2 (less applicability to duration of stay), 58 Stat. 724.
  46 U.S.C. 796. July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §6, 58 Stat. 726.

In subsection (b) the words "upon a claim against the United States" and "as to any proceedings by or on behalf of such claimant for the taking of a deposition or the production of evidence in connection with or in relation to such claim" are omitted as surplusage.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7724 of this title as this section and substituted "section 8891" for "section 7721" in introductory provisions of subsec. (a) and in subsec. (b).

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8895. Stay extended or shortened

The Secretary of the Navy, when a stay under this chapter is in effect, may file with the court, or a judge of the court, a certificate extending or shortening the time stated in the prior certificate. The filing of such a new certificate extends or shortens the stay to the period specified in the new certificate or terminates the stay if the new certificate so states.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 484, §7725; renumbered §8895, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7725 46 U.S.C. 794 (1st, and 9th (less proviso), sentences). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (1st, and 9th (less proviso), sentences), 58 Stat. 724.

The words "or suspension", "either of prosecution of the suit or of the taking of testimony", "during which the prosecution of such suit or taking of such deposition or production of evidence would tend to endanger the security of the United States or of such operations in time of war, or to interfere therewith", "as the case may be", and "in relation to which it is made shall continue in effect" are omitted as surplusage.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7725 of this title as this section.

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8896. Reconsideration of stay

(a) A claimant or party who considers himself adversely affected by a stay under this chapter may serve a written notice on the Secretary of the Navy at Washington, D.C., requesting him to reconsider the stay previously issued and to issue a new certificate. The notice shall identify the stay by means of an attached copy of the certificate of the Secretary or a sufficient description of the stay. The notice may not contain any recital of the facts or circumstances involved.

(b) Within ten days after receiving notice under this section, the Secretary or his designee shall hold a secret meeting at which the claimant or party, or his representative, may present any facts and arguments he thinks material.

(c) Within ten days after a hearing under this section, the Secretary shall file with the court that ordered the stay a new certificate stating whether the stay is then to be terminated or for what period the stay is to continue in effect. If the Secretary fails to file a new certificate, the court, upon application by the claimant or party, shall issue an order directing the Secretary to file a new certificate within a specified time.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 485, §7726; renumbered §8896, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7726(a) 46 U.S.C. 794 (2d, 3d, and 4th sentences). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (2d, 3d, and 4th sentences), 58 Stat. 724.
7726(b) 46 U.S.C. 794 (5th sentence). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (5th sentence), 58 Stat. 724.
7726(c) 46 U.S.C. 794 (6th and 7th sentences). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (6th and 7th sentences), 58 Stat. 724.

In subsection (a) the words "then in effect", "upon which the stay is based", and "for its identification" are omitted as surplusage.

In subsection (b) the words "with respect to whether or not a stay should be issued or maintained" are omitted as surplusage. The words "his designee" are substituted for the words "some official designated by him" for brevity.

In subsection (c) the words "that ordered the stay" are substituted for the words "in which said stay is pending or the court in which the proceeding stayed was instituted" for brevity and clarity.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7726 of this title as this section.

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8897. Duration of stay

A stay of proceedings under this chapter remains in effect for the period specified in the certificate upon which it was based unless the Secretary of the Navy issues a new certificate under section 8895 or 8896 of this title changing the termination date. However, a stay under this chapter may not remain in force longer than six months after the cessation of hostilities.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 485, §7727; renumbered §8897 and amended Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §§807(d)(10), 809(a), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837, 1840.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7727 46 U.S.C. 791 (1st sentence as applicable to duration of stay, and proviso as applicable to duration of stay). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §1 (1st sentence as applicable to duration of stay, and proviso as applicable to duration of stay), 58 Stat. 723.
  46 U.S.C. 792 (as applicable to duration of stay). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §2 (as applicable to duration of stay), 58 Stat. 724.
  646 U.S.C. 794 (8th sentence and proviso of 9th sentence). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (8th sentence and proviso of 9th sentence), 58 Stat. 724.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7727 of this title as this section and substituted "section 8895 or 8896" for "section 7725 or 7726".

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8898. Restricted certificate

The Secretary of the Navy may restrict a certificate issued under this chapter so that it stays only the taking of testimony of certain witnesses or the production of evidence on certain subjects. The proceedings not stayed may continue.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 485, §7728; renumbered §8898, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7728 46 U.S.C. 794 (10th sentence). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (10th sentence), 58 Stat. 724.

The words "The Secretary of the Navy may restrict a certificate" are substituted for the words "Any certificate * * * by the Secretary of the Navy * * * may, in his discretion, be restricted." The words "the production of" are inserted for clarity. The words "in which event" are omitted as surplusage.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7728 of this title as this section.

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8899. Investigation before issue of certificate

The Secretary of the Navy may not issue a certificate under this chapter until he satisfies himself by investigation that it is necessary.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 485, §7729; renumbered §8899, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7729 46 U.S.C. 794 (less 1st 10 sentences). July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §4 (less 1st 10 sentences), 58 Stat. 724.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7729 of this title as this section.

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.

§8900. Evidence admissible when witness is not available

Whenever the court is satisfied by appropriate evidence or by agreement of counsel that the United States or the claimant is unable after reasonable efforts to secure the testimony of a witness and—

(1) the United States or the claimant has been prevented by a stay under this chapter from examining the witness; or

(2) the United States establishes that it has refrained from bringing a suit or from taking the testimony of the witness in a pending suit to avoid endangering the security of naval operations or interfering with such operations;


the court shall receive in evidence in place of the testimony of the witness—

(1) the affidavit of the witness duly sworn to before a notary public or other authorized officer; or

(2) the statement or testimony of the witness before a court-martial, a court of inquiry, or an investigation; but the use of such statement or testimony does not, in any litigation, make the remainder of the record admissible or compel the United States to produce the remainder of the record.


The court shall give such weight to the affidavit, statement, or testimony as it considers proper under the circumstances.

(Aug. 10, 1956, ch. 1041, 70A Stat. 485, §7730; renumbered §8900, Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VIII, §807(d)(10), Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1837.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised sectionSource (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
7730 46 U.S.C. 795. July 3, 1944, ch. 399, §5, 58 Stat. 725.

The words "naval", "board of investigation", and "Coast Guard investigation" are omitted as surplusage.

Amendments

2018Pub. L. 115–232 renumbered section 7730 of this title as this section.

Effective Date of 2018 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 115–232 effective Feb. 1, 2019, with provision for the coordination of amendments and special rule for certain redesignations, see section 800 of Pub. L. 115–232, set out as a note preceding section 3001 of this title.