31. Conduct of proceedings

(1) A person shall commence a proceeding by giving the FMT a written notice in the form provided for in the rules of procedure of the FMT.
(2) Subject to Article 31(4), on the commencement of a proceeding, the president of the FMT shall, without undue delay:
(a) select and appoint a panel of one or more members of the FMT to exercise the powers and perform the functions of the FMT to hear and determine the matter; and
(b) appoint a panel member to be the panel chairman.
(3) For the purpose of Article 31(2), the president of the FMT may appoint himself as the chairman or as a member of a panel in a proceeding.
(a) Where:
(i) a proceeding is commenced before the FMT;
(ii) there are common parties or there is a common question of law or fact in any other proceeding commenced before the FMT; and
(iii) the president of the FMT is satisfied that it is in the interests of justice and efficiency and is in the interests of the DIFC to make a direction under this Article;
the president of the FMT may direct that:
(iv) the proceedings be consolidated, heard and determined by the FMT constituted as a single panel, on such terms as the president may direct;
(v) the proceedings are to be heard at the same time, or one following another; or
(vi) a proceeding is to be stayed until the determination of another proceeding.
(b) Where two or more original proceedings are consolidated into a single proceeding under Article 31(4)(a), the FMT panel constituted for the consolidated proceeding shall, in hearing and determining issues relevant to each of the original proceedings, have the same powers in relation to those issues as the FMT panel would have had in the original proceedings.
(5) In hearing and determining a proceeding, the FMT may:
(a) receive and consider any evidence by way of oral evidence, written statements or documents, even if such evidence may not be admissible in civil or criminal proceedings in a court of law;
(b) determine the manner in which such evidence is received by the FMT;
(c) where the proceeding is a reference, consider any evidence relating to the subject-matter of the reference, whether or not such evidence was available to the DFSA at the time of the decision to which the reference relates;
(d) by notice in writing require a person to attend before it at any sitting and to give evidence and produce any item, record or document in his possession relating to the subject matter of the proceeding;
(e) administer oaths;
(f) examine or cause to be examined on oath or otherwise a person attending before it and require the person to answer truthfully any question which the FMT considers appropriate for the purpose of the proceeding;
(g) order a witness to provide evidence by sworn statement for the purpose of the proceedings;
(h) order a person not to publish or otherwise disclose any material disclosed by any person to the FMT;
(i) where the proceeding is a reference, stay the decision of the DFSA to which the reference relates and any related steps proposed to be taken by the DFSA until the FMT has determined the reference; and
(j) exercise such other powers or make such other orders as the FMT considers necessary for or ancillary to the conduct of the proceeding or the performance of its function.
(6) Proceedings and decisions of the FMT shall be heard and given in public unless the FMT orders otherwise, or its rules of procedure provide otherwise.
(7) Any finding of fact in a proceeding shall be determined on the balance of probabilities.
(8) A decision of the FMT may be taken by a majority.
(9) At the conclusion of a proceeding, the FMT may also make an order requiring a party to the proceedings to pay a specified amount, being all or part of the costs of the proceedings, including those of any party.
(10) Where the FMT makes an order requiring a party to the proceedings to pay costs under Article 31(9), such costs may be recovered from the recipient of the order in a court of competent jurisdiction as a debt due to the party which incurred the relevant costs.
(11) Upon making its decision, the FMT must without undue delay inform each party to the proceeding in writing of:
(a) such decision and the reasons for such decision, including its findings on material questions of fact and identifying the evidence or other material on which those findings were based;
(b) the date on which the decision is to take effect; and
(c) where applicable, the date by which payment of any fine, restitution or compensation must be made.
(12) A certificate that purports to be signed by the president or proper officer of the FMT and which states that the FMT on a specified day made a specified decision, including a finding that a specified person has committed a contravention of a specified provision of the Law or of the Rules or of any other legislation administered by the DFSA or made a specified finding of fact, is, in any other proceedings before FMT, or proceedings before the Court, where relevant:
(a) conclusive evidence of the decision of the FMT made on that day;
(b) prima facie evidence that the person contravened that provision; and
(c) prima facie evidence of the relevant finding of fact.