What Evidence Can be Admitted at Trial?
The court system of the Unites States safeguards litigants by limiting what types of evidence may be presented to a judge or jury. The objection heard most often, and the hardest to understand, is the rule regarding relevance. To a lay person, it would seem all evidence and testimony would be relevant to deciding what really happened in a case. This common-sense thought is limited in Rule 403 of the rules of evidence. Below is the federal rule, but most states have adopted a similar version for their proceedings.
RULE 403: EXCLUSION OF RELEVANT EVIDENCE ON GROUNDS OF PREJUDICE, CONFUSION, OR WASTE OF TIME
Although relevant, evidence may be excluded if its probative value is substantially outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice, confusion of the issues, or misleading the jury, or by considerations of undue delay, waste of time, or needless presentation of cumulative evidence.
There are two main thrusts of the rule. The first is a balancing test that must decide if evidence is so bad that the jury would decide a case unfairly. This can be summed up with the term of confusion. Anything that would confuse a jury can not be admitted. At Black Swan, we strive to provide evidence in a concise, straight forward presentation that is easily digestible for the judge and jury. While we can't promise that a judge will permit the evidence provided to be admitted, we guarantee that it is provided in the most stream-lined and understandable matter possible. We can search out the relevant data, just like finding a needle in a haystack, and permit you to present your best case.
The second half can be summed up with the term waste. Waste can be viewed as anything that has been presented multiple times in a case, evidence that takes too long to understand, or anything that is too time consuming to present. Black Swan has worked tirelessly to create presentations that avert all these pitfalls with regards to evidence. Or presentations are to the point and waste no time or energy putting forth the facts.
Don't take a chance on your relevant evidence not being admitted. Let Black Swan proves you with court exhibits that will allow you to tell your truth.