A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Fact-Finding

Hence, while there is no fixed procedure for the discovery of facts necessary for the adjudication of a case, it is a matter of principle that Assemblies must, before passing judgement, acquaint themselves, through means they themselves devise, with the facts of any case.
(Universal House of Justice, NSA USA - Developing Distinctive Bahá’í Communities)


In attempting to aid parties in resolving disputes not involving allegations of abuse or suspected abuse, Assemblies may find it helpful to suggest that the parties examine separately their own roles and assumptions in the dispute, as well as the accuracy of the views of the other parties.
(USA- NSA, Guidelines for Local Spiritual Assemblies, Chapter 14, p. 21)


In disputes between believers regarding personal matters, Assemblies should generally avoid accepting the word of either party before a thorough examination of the facts and without obtaining the comments of all parties.
(USA- NSA, Guidelines for Local Spiritual Assemblies, Chapter 14, p. 21)


The prospect of a believer’s displaying an attitude of hostility, when being interviewed by a Spiritual Assembly or its representatives who are seeking to determine the facts of the matter, is abhorrent. All believers are strongly enjoined to have the utmost respect for the Assemblies, to cooperate fully with them, and to support their decisions. An Assembly enquiring into a matter should not allow itself to be deterred by the hostility of a believer who is withholding relevant information; it should appeal to him for cooperation, remind him forcefully of his responsibilities and, in extreme cases such as threats made to the investigators, warn him of the administrative consequences of the persistence of his deplorable conduct.
(Universal House of Justice, Removal of Administrative Rights, 1993)


There is no justification for the suspension of a believer’s administrative rights pending investigation and review of the facts of the matter in which he is involved. As we have repeatedly stated, the application of sanctions is a very serious action and should be imposed only in extreme cases.
(Universal House of Justice, Lights of Guidance, p. 57)


When an allegation is made that a believer has violated Bahá’í law, irrespective of the consequence in civil law, the process of investigation calls for a diligent and persistent effort by the Assembly to ascertain the facts, and for wholehearted cooperation of all concerned in the search for truth. Believers called upon to provide information should, if necessary, be reminded of the responsibility they bear to speak the truth and of the spiritual consequences of a failure to do so. ‘Abdu’l-Bahá asserts:
Truthfulness is the foundation of all human virtues. Without truthfulness, progress and success, in all the worlds of God, are impossible for any soul. When this holy attribute is established in man, all the divine qualities will also be acquired.
If this “holy attribute” should adorn the behaviour of believers toward others, how much more should it characterize the statements which a Bahá’í makes to a divinely ordained institution.
(Universal House of Justice, Removal of Administrative Rights, 1993)


When consulting on a matter an Assembly may find that all the facts can be supplied by a few members of the Assembly or that the facts may be common knowledge to the members. At times, it may be necessary to obtain further facts. The Assembly may appoint Assembly or community members to gather the facts on its behalf. In advance of each meeting, the Assembly should agree on the purpose of the consultation, should assemble the facts, and decide the questions and points to be discussed or clarified during the meeting.
(Universal House of Justice, NSA USA - Developing Distinctive Bahá’í Communities)