One of the more important aspects of a trial is getting your evidence admitted so it can be used by the trier of fact in deciding the case.
The trier of fact can either be a jury in a jury trial or the judge in a bench trial.
Regardless of the type of trial, admitted evidence plays an important role in the outcome of the case.
The purpose of this article is to give you a basic understanding of how this can be done.
Please remember that each attorney may not use the same “words” so to speak doing this but there are some concepts which will be the same from attorney to attorney.
The first thing that you want to make sure of is that either you or the courtroom clerk has pre-marked whatever it is you want to show the witness.
Once it is pre-marked then you can ask the court may you approach the witness.
After the court has given you permission to approach you can then walk up to the witness and hand them what you pre-marked.
While handing it to the witness it is a good idea to state on the record what the pre-marked item is you are handing the witness.
For example, you can state, “let the record reflect that I am showing the witness what has been previously marked for identification purposes plaintiff #1.
You then want to make sure in your questioning that the witness is able to identify what it is that you have shown the witness.
For example, if it is a picture you want to maybe ask the witness, “what is this that I have just handed you?”
The witness should respond for example that, “it’s a picture of the crash scene the day I was hit in my car.”
You may want to follow up with something like, “does this picture accurately reflect how the scene looked at the time your car was hit?”
The witness then should respond something like, “yes it is. The cars are in the same spot they were after the crash.”
As a final follow-up you can also ask the witness, “Will this picture help aid in your testimony to explaining what happened that day to the jury?”
The witness should agree that exhibit will help them.
Finally, you can then motion to the court that you would like to have the picture admitted into evidence.
So for example in this case you can maybe say to the judge, “Your honor I move that what was previously marked for identification purposes as plaintiff #1 be now admitted as plaintiff’s exhibit #1.
At this time if the other side would like to object to the exhibit being admitted this is the time they can do so.
If you have any more questions on this process, or how this would work in your medical malpractice case, this is what we invite you to do if your matter happened in Maryland.
Pick up the phone and give us a call.
We can be reached at 301-850-4832.
We answer Maryland medical malpractice questions like yours all the time and we would be glad to listen to your story.