In a civil case, there are two parties as the plaintiff and defendant. If the plaintiff feels disadvantaged, then he/she would make the claim letter which is registered to the authorized local district court and by the district court, it would be sent to defendant. In the matter of the claim letter which has been registered by plaintiff, then the plaintiff may perform the amendment of claim. The amendment of claim is the one of rights which is granted to the plaintiff in changing or reducing the content of claim letter which is made ??by him/her. In this case, either a judge or defendant cannot block and prohibit the plaintiff to amend his/her claim. The amendment of claim has to promote the legal values in accordance with the laws.

The regulation on amendment of claim is not regulated in Herziene Indonesich Reglement (“HIR“) and Rechtsreglement Buitengewesten (“RBg“), but it is set in the Article 127 of Reglement op de Rechtsvordering (“Rv“), as follows:

“The Plaintiff has the right to amend or reduce his/her claim until the case is decided, without amending or adding the main claims.”

Based on this provision, it can be concluded that the plaintiff has the right to submit the amendment of claim, but it is only reducing or not adding the basis of claim and the events that became a basis of claim. If the amendment of claim contains main addition or events that are the basis of claim, then it would be very detrimental for the defendant’s interest. In other words, the amendment is allowed as long as it does not change the claim material, but only the formal aspect of claim (for example: change or addition of plaintiff’s address, name of the plaintiff or defendant).

The Requirements for Amendment of Claim

The regulation on requirements to submit the amendment of claim application is not contained in Article 127 Rv. But in the handbook which is issued by the Supreme Court (Mahkamah Agung/ MA), there are formal requirements to submit the amendment of claim, where it is very important to apply in a judicial practice. In the Supreme Court handbook, it is explained the formal requirements in submitting the amendment of claim, as follows[1]:

a.  The amendment of claim submission on first trial is attended by defendant

These formal requirements are affirmed by the Supreme Court in handbook, which states:

•  Submitted on the first trial day, and

•  Attended by the parties

From this provision, the plaintiff is not entitled to submit an amendment of claim:

•  Out of trial day, and

•  The trial that is not attended by defendant.

The purpose of these formal requirements is to protect the defendant’s interest in defending themselves. If the amendment is justified out of court and out of defendant’s presence, it would be very detrimental to defendant’s interest.

b.  Grant the right to defendant for responds

This formal requirement was outlined by the Supreme Court, which states:

•  Asking the defendant about the amendment of claim concerned,

•  Granting the right and opportunity to the defendant to respond and defend his/her interest.

c.  Do not inhibit the examination session

In this case, the amendment of claim may not disturb the examination session in the court. If the amendment of claim disturbs the examination session, then it will be a new problem between litigants, such as addition of examination period so that it wastes a long time in case settlement process.

The amendment of claim is submitted to the panel of judges who examines the case. If the amendment of claim has been approved by the judge, then the judge is obliged to examine the content of the amendment of claim. The most important thing in the examination session is in the content of the submitted amendment of claim, whether the amendment of claim is against or not against the law. Therefore, the role of judge in the matter of amendment of claim that has been submitted is very important because if amendment of claim content is against the law, while the judge has approved the amendment of claim that is against the law, it can be said that the judge has violated his duty to execute justice.

Alsha Alexandra Kartika

[1] Pedoman Pelaksanaan Tugas dan Administrasi Peradilan, Buku II, MA RI: Jakarta, April 1994, hlm. 110.

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