WHAT ARE THE RULES OF EVIDENCE?
In a trial, lawyers on both sides use evidence and testimony to try to prove their case. However, lawyers are not allowed to prove their case in whatever manner they wish, they must follow formal rules that dictate how and when evidence or testimony can be presented.
Purpose of Rules of Evidence
Although it seems like any evidence or testimony that may help prove a case should be admissible at trial, this is not always the case. At first glance, this seems like it may promote injustice or provide an unfair trial. However, this is done in order to provide an efficient trial system that only produces clear evidence and testimony. Without rules of evidence, the system would be abused with unclear or irrelevant testimony and evidence that lacked any credibility or standing. As such, certain testimony, such as hearsay, is excluded due to its lack of reliability or authenticity.
Federal Rules of Evidence
The Federal Rules of Evidence are a series of rules that were designed by academics, legislators, and the judicial system to govern the Federal court systems. After they were instituted, many states adopted them in whole or in part as the rules of evidence for their state courts as well. Because of this, many courts share similar or almost exact versions of the Federal Rules of Evidence, thus allowing uniformity in the judicial system.
Although the Federal Rules of Evidence produce a framework of how evidence and testimony are governed, these rules are still flexible and subject to interpretation in the courtroom by judges. This is done because each case has different facts that don’t always allow uniform application of the rules to every case. As such, interpretation also depends on the individual judge that is overseeing the case. However, although judges are allowed to interpret the Federal Rules of Evidence, they are not allowed to use this discretion to create new laws
As you can see, the rules of evidence that govern a trial are not easily understood or grasped. As such, it is important to hire an experienced attorney who is experienced and capable of understanding and using the rules of evidence in your favor.
If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime, it is important to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney that can help zealously defend your case. Contact Us at Minick Law, P.C. for a free consultation on your case.
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