SEC. 18. Process, Pleadings, and Adjudications. - a. Upon the filing of a petition for involuntary bankruptcy, service thereof, with a writ of subpoena, shall be made upon the person therein named as defendant in the same manner that service of such process is now had upon the commencement of a suit in equity in the courts of the United States, except that it shall be returnable within fifteen days, unless the judge shall for cause fix a longer time; but in case personal service cannot be made, then notice shall be given by publication in the same manner and for the same time as provided by law for notice by publication in suits to enforce a legal or equitable lien in courts of the United States, except that, unless the judge shall otherwise direct, the order shall be published not more than once a week for two consecutive weeks, and the return day shall be ten days after the last publication unless the judge shall for cause fix a longer time.

b. The bankrupt, or any creditor, may appear and plead to the petition within five days after the return day, or within such further time as the court may allow.

c. All pleadings setting up matters of fact shall be verified under oath.

d. If the bankrupt, or any of his creditors, shall appear, within the time limited, and controvert the facts alleged in the petition, the judge shall determine, as soon as may be, the issues presented by the pleadings, without the intervention of a jury, except in cases where a jury trial is given by this Act, and make the adjudication or dismiss the petition.

e. If on the last day within which pleadings may be filed none are filed by the bankrupt or any of his creditors, the judge shall on the next day, if present, or as soon thereafter as practicable, make the adjudication or dismiss the petition.

f. If the judge is absent from the district, or the division of the district in which the petition is pending, on the next day after the last day on which pleadings may be filed, and none have been filed by the bankrupt or any of his creditors, the clerk shall forthwith refer the case to the referee.

g. Upon the filing of a voluntary petition the judge shall hear the petition and make the adjudication or dismiss the petition. If the judge is absent from the district, or the division of the district in which the petition is filed, at the time of the filing, the clerk shall forthwith refer the case to the referee.

SEC. 19. Jury Trials. - a. A person against whom an involuntary petition has been filed shall be entitled to have a trial by jury, in respect to the question of his insolvency, except as herein otherwise provided, and any act of bankruptcy alleged in such petition to have been committed, upon filing a written application therefor at or before the time within which an answer may be filed. If such application is not filed within such time, a trial by jury shall be deemed to have been waived.

b. If a jury is not in attendance upon the court, one may be specially summoned for the trial, or the case may be postponed, or, if the case is pending in one of the district courts within the jurisdiction of a circuit court of the United States, it may be certified for trial to the circuit court sitting at the same place, or by consent of parties when sitting at any other place in the same district, if such circuit court has or is to have a jury first in attendance.

c. The right to submit matters in controversy, or an alleged offense under this Act, to a jury shall be determined and enjoyed, except as provided by this Act, according to the United States laws now in force or such as may be hereafter enacted in relation to trials by jury.

SEC. 20. Oaths, Affirmations. - a. Oaths required by this Act, except upon hearings in court, may be administered by (1) referees; (2) officers authorized to administer oaths in proceedings before the courts of the United States, or under the laws of the State where the same are to be taken; and (3) diplomatic or consular officers of the United States in any foreign country.

b. Any person conscientiously opposed to taking an oath may, in lieu thereof, affirm. Any person who shall affirm falsely shall be punished as for the making of a false oath.

SEC. 21. Evidence. - a. A court of bankruptcy may, upon application of any officer, bankrupt, or creditor, by order require any designated person, including the bankrupt and his wife, to appear in court or before a referee or the judge of any State court, to be examined concerning the acts, conduct, or property of a bankrupt whose estate is in process of administration under this Act: Provided, That the wife may be examined only touching business transacted by her or to which she is a party, and to determine the fact whether she has transacted or been a party to any business of the bankrupt.

b. The right to take depositions in proceedings under this Act shall be determined and enjoyed according to the United States laws now in force, or such as may be hereafter enacted relating to the taking of depositions, except as herein provided.

c. Notice of the taking of depositions shall be filed with the referee in every case. When depositions are to be taken in opposition to the allowance of a claim notice shall also be served upon the claimant, and when in opposition to a discharge notice shall also be served upon the bankrupt.

d. Certified copies of proceedings before a referee, or of papers, when issued by the clerk or referee, shall be admitted as evidence with like force and effect as certified copies of the records of district courts of the United States are now or may hereafter be admitted as evidence.

e. A certified copy of the order approving the bond of a trustee shall constitute conclusive evidence of the vesting in him of the title to the property of the bankrupt, and if recorded shall impart the same notice that a deed from the bankrupt to the trustee if recorded would have imparted had not bankruptcy proceedings intervened.

f. A certified copy of an order confirming or setting aside a composition, or granting or setting aside a discharge, not revoked, shall be evidence of the jurisdiction of the court, the regularity of the proceedings, and of the fact that the order was made.

g. A certified copy of an order confirming a composition shall constitute evidence of the revesting of the title of his property in the bankrupt, and if recorded shall impart the same notice that a deed from the trustee to the bankrupt if recorded would impart.