Evidence-ND - Compiled Evidence Notes I INTRODUCTION TO...

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Compiled Evidence Notes I. INTRODUCTION TO TRIAL I. INTRODUCTION TO TRIAL FRE 102, 104, 103 How the law of evidence fits in: the courtroom is like a box and the law of evidence determines how it gets filled during the trial. Two keys: role of the parties & the jury. Adversarial system - parties primary responsibilities: investigate, put on facts, make args, jury instruction. Jury - 12 or 6, importance to evidence purpose: insure the jury component is exercised properly, improper things not given (criticism - inefficient, gamesmanship, unequal resources, skew outcome, irrational juries poor at truth finding function. R ULE 102 P URPOSE AND C ONSTRUCTION : T HESE RULES SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO SECURE FAIRNESS IN ADMINISTRATION , ELIMINATION OF UNJUSTIFIABLE EXPENSE AND DELAY , AND PROMOTION OF GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE LAW OF EVIDENCE TO THE END THAT THE TRUTH MAY BE ASCERTAINED AND PROCEEDINGS JUSTLY DETERMINED . Truth is not direct goal, objective is to make sure the process is efficient. PROCESS TRUTH. Courtroom as a box: parties fill with data factfinder (jury) looks at and draws conclusions about the real world, what actually happened then the law is applied to conclusions, jury instructions contains elements of the charge VERDICT becomes the truth, unassailable unless legal problems with the process. A. BURDENS OF PROOF Two aspects: Burden of Production and Burden of Persuasion (if parties “tie” the party with the burden of production loses). Burden of persuasion - who has the burden of tipping the scale. They usually go together. Standard of proof - to satisfy burden of production , prima facie case , sufficient evidence to support finding of each material element, so a r’able jury could find in your favor on each element. Who decides if burden of production has been met? The judge decides if enough evidence had been put into the box to send the case to the jury, decides if the jury should be involved at all. If there is not enough, burden not met case dismissed. Burden of persuasion : Civil - preponderance of the evidence, more likely then not, Criminal - BARD. Intermediate standard - clear and convincing. The jury applies the burden of persuasion. If the evidence is overwhelming so that no r’able jury could find for the ∆- directed verdict (civil only). Burden of production : important for the law of evidence, the judge keeping an eye on admissible evidence, there must be some on every bit of claim or charge. If not, case will be dismissed. Some evidence can be used for some things, but not another limiting instruction . If ignored by the jury the judge may dismiss or direct verdict. Intersection of law of evidence and procedure - evidence used for the wrong purpose. Courtroom as a sealed box: Rules of evidence are the seal that keeps things out. If any Rule of evidence applies to keep evidence out, it says out. The Rules as a series of hurdles.
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Rules: Points: come from common law (not always coherent), FRE - not complete, lots
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This note was uploaded on 03/18/2008 for the course LAW 500P taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Michigan State University.

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Evidence-ND - Compiled Evidence Notes I INTRODUCTION TO...

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