In Placer County family law cases, sometimes the matter of hearsay is raised by the judge or opposing attorney. Perhaps you have been told by an attorney that evidence you wish to offer is inadmissible because it is hearsay. This issue is complicated and can be very frustrating to parties who wish to simply prove their case in court and move on with their lives.
Hearsay is defined an out of court statement offered by either party to prove the statement itself is true. This is generally untrustworthy because the original person making the statement is not in court to testify to the accuracy of the statement. The Placer County family court is always suspicious of hearsay and is not permitted to hear hearsay evidence unless there is a valid legal exception. The court may be concerned about making a ruling in your family law case on the basis of hearsay evidence because the court does not want to be criticized by the higher court if one of the parties should appeal the decision.
A good rule of thumb for avoiding hearsay is to collect witnesses who can testify in court to saying things or offer information based upon their personal knowledge (using sight, touch, smell, hearing, or taste). Another good rule of thumb is that anything either party says, though hearsay, is probably admissible in court because of California law providing an exception. Parties to a Placer county family case should therefore be very careful what they write and say about the case because it can (and will) be used against them in court.
If you are involved in a Placer family law case and you want to prepare proper evidence for your case, please meet with one of our Placer family law attorneys at Miller & Associates. We offer a free half hour consultation and would be happy to meet with you and discuss how we can help you in your case.