Evidence Mnemonics

adrianmillion's version from 2015-07-22 14:53

Section 1

Question Answer
D's Other Bad Acts/Crimes for non-character purposesMIMIC
MMistake (absence of)
CCommon Scheme or Plan

Section 2

Question Answer
Self-Authenticating DocumentsPONTiAC
PPublic Records (and certified copies)
OOfficial Publications
TiTrade Inscriptions
AAcknowledged Documents (notarized)
CCommercial Paper

Section 3

Question Answer
Permissible Law Witness TestimonySCHIVVOE RIG
IIntoxication of Another
VValue of own Services
EEmotions of Another party
RRational nature of act
IInsanity of another
GGeneral Appearance

Section 4

Question Answer
Reliability of Expert TestimonyTRAP (Daubert)
TTesting of princples
RRate of Error
AAccepted by other experts in field
PPeer Review and Publication

Section 5

Question Answer
When is a witness unavailable for Hearsay purposes?PRIMA
RRefusal to testify
IIllness (mental or physical) or death
MMemory (lack of)
AAbsent (beyond supboena)

Section 6

Question Answer
Hearsay exceptions requiring unavailability of witness

Section 7

Question Answer
Privileges in Federal CourtA/C P/P PS/C S/I M/C
PS/CPsychotherapist, Social Worker-Client
S/ISpousal Immunity (only during marriage, and only in criminal case)
M/CMarital Communications (In any type of case, comms made during the marriage, priv survives divorce)

Hearsay Exceptions Requiring Unavailable Declarant

Question Answer
DDying Declaration—In a HOMICIDE prosecution OR Civil action, Statement made while declarant believed death was imminent, concerning the cause or circumstances of the impending death
IInterest, declaration against—Statement against the declarant's pecuniary, proprietary, or penal interest when made + personal knowledge of facts
FFormer Testimony—Statement made UNDER OATH at same or at othe rproceeding at which the party against whom it is offered had (i) motive AND (ii) opportunity to develop testimony
FForfeiture By Wrongdoing—Statement of unavailable declarant offered against party who procured the declarant's unavailability

Statements By an Opposing Party v. Statements Against Interest

Statements By an Opposing PartyStatements Against Interest
Statement need not have been against interest when madeStatement MUST have been against interest when made
Declarant need not be unavailableDeclarant must be unavailable
Declarant must be a partyDeclarant need not be a party

Business Records Exception

Question Answer
What is the foundation for the Business records exception to hearsay?TRUMPA
TTimely—Record must have been Timely made “at or near” the time of the matter recorded
RRegular—It must have been the habitual, ROUTINE, regular practice of that business to systematically make and keep such a record
UUnder Duty—Out-of-court declarant must have been UNDER a DUTY to supply information for the record, unless the statement falls into another hearsay exception, in which case the statement would be admitted, provided the other 4 TRUMP elements are satisfied (“hearsay w/in hearsay”) (Note, witnesses are not under a duty to convey info to police, so a report containing their statements cannot qualify as a business record unless under another exception).
MMADE—The record was MADE and the info was kept as part of the regular practice of that business; AND
PPersonal Knowledge—Business records must identify the source of the info, and the person supplying info for the record must have had Personal knowledge of the matter recorded
AAuthentication—Authenticity established by the custodian (i) testifying that the record is a business record, or (ii) certifying in writing that the record is a business record.

Hearsay Exceptions—Availability Immaterial

Question Answer
State of MindStatement of then-existing state of mind, emotion, sensation, or physical condition.
Excited UtteranceStatement made while under the stress of excitement of a startling event, relating to the event, before the declarant had time to reflect on it.
Present Bodily ConditionSpontaneous declaration of present physical symptoms.
Past Bodily conditionStatement made for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment.


Question Answer
Recorded RecollectionWriting by a witness who cannot now remember the facts, made while the facts were fresh on her mind
Business Records or Absence ThereofWriting made in the regular course of business, consisting of matters within the personal knowledge of one with a business duty to transmit. Lack of such writing may be used to show nonoccurrence of event
Public Records and ReportsRecords and reports of public agencies regarding their activities, and records of births, deaths, marriages. Absence of public record is admissible to show nonexistence of matter; findings resulting from an investigation authorized by law only in civil acaitons and against the government in criminal cases.
JudgmentsA copy of a judgment of a prior felony conviction is admissible to prove any fact essential to the judgment. IN a criminal case, it may be used for this purpose only against the accused.


Question Answer
Ancient DocumentsDocuments 20 years old or more
Documents Affecting Property InterestsStatements in a document affecting an interest in a property (deed, will)
Learned TreatisesStatements from authoritative works admitted if called to the attention of an expert witness while on the stand, and established as reliable authority.
ReputationReputation evidence concerning a person's character, a persons' personal family history, land boundaries, or a community's general history
Family RecordsStatements of fact found in family bibles, jewelry engravings, tombstones, etc.
Market ReportsMarket reports and public compilations generally relied on by the public or persons of a particular occupation.

Witness Competency

Question Answer
A witness must PURR before she can testify
Ppersonally PERCEIVED the event;
UUNDERSTAND and take oath or affirmation;
RREMEMBER the event;
Rable to RECALL and communicate the event on stand