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Old 06-04-2011, 06:26 AM
Mess Mess is offline
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[54] The trial judge is entitled to question the relevance of all evidence and to control any attempt to introduce inadmissible evidence.
[55] At any time during the questioning of witnesses by the opposing party, you have the right to object to the questions asked or to the introduction of documents put to the witness before they are marked as exhibits. If you object to a question, simply stand. When the trial judge calls upon you, state the reason for the objection. The trial judge will hear submissions from you and the opposing party about the admissibility of the evidence and the trial judge will make a ruling. If you object to a document being entered as an exhibit by the other party, the same procedure applies.
[56] It is the duty of the trial judge to decide, on the basis of the established rules of law, what evidence may properly be put before the court. Once the trial judge has made a ruling, it is final in the trial and you must accept it and not continue to argue about it.
[57] Normally, the only evidence a witness can give is what he or she personally saw or heard. Accordingly, it is important that you understand that you cannot give evidence or ask your witnesses to give evidence about what another person said if you are introducing that evidence for the purpose of proving the truth of the statement. This is known as hearsay evidence and it is generally not permitted, unless the other person who is alleged to have made a particular statement is the opposing party or a witness that will definitely testify at the trial.
[58] Hearsay evidence may be admitted if the evidence is necessary and reliable.
• "Necessary" means the evidence is not readily available; for example, the person who made the statement has died or is seriously ill.
• "Reliable" means the statement is trustworthy because of the circumstances under which it was made.
[59] There is an exception to the hearsay rule when the only purpose in introducing the statement of a person who is not going to testify is to prove that the statement was made, not that the statement is true. If that is the purpose of this evidence, let the trial judge know this when the evidence is introduced.
Expert Witness
[60] You may call experts to testify on any issue if you have complied with Rule 23(23) in giving notice. Unless the opposing party consents to the introduction of the expert report at trial, you will have to call the expert as a witness at trial.
[61] Expert evidence is usually introduced where the expert can provide information to the court, which is outside the experience and knowledge of the judge. Therefore, the expert must possess special knowledge that goes beyond that of an ordinary judge. The expert's opinion must also be related to a fact in issue that, as a matter of human experience, will assist this court in resolving these issues.
[62] An expert witness must first be qualified as an expert in his or her field, either because of his or her education and/or because of his or her experience and personal knowledge. If qualified, the expert will be permitted to express opinions in the field of his or her expertise. If you intend to object to the qualification of an expert witness, you should tell the trial judge. You will have an opportunity to cross-examine the expert on his or her qualifications and then to make submissions before the judge decides if the expert is qualified. If the judge decides that the expert is qualified, the expert will testify.
[63] An expert does not replace the function of the trial judge as the trier of fact. The expert cannot make decisions about the various claims.