2010 Edition of the Massachusetts Guide to
Evidence Now Available
Supreme Judicial Court and its Executive Committee on Massachusetts
Evidence Law today announced the release of the 2010 edition
of the Massachusetts Guide to Evidence. The Supreme Judicial
Court recommends the use of this Guide.
Guide makes the law of evidence accessible and understandable
to the bench, bar, and the public," said Chief Justice
Margaret H. Marshall.
new edition of the Guide is available on the Supreme Judicial
Court, Appeals Court and Trial Court websites at www.mass.gov/courts/sjc/guide-to-evidence.
Official Print Edition of the 479-page 2010 edition of
the Massachusetts Guide to Evidence is available for purchase
from the Flaschner Judicial Institute, which is providing
a complimentary copy to every judge in the Commonwealth.
Massachusetts Guide to Evidence assembles existing Massachusetts
evidence law in an easy-to-use document organized similarly
to the Federal Rules of Evidence. The Guide includes extensive
explanatory notes and citations to pertinent authorities.
contents of the 2010 edition of the Guide were revised
to reflect changes to Massachusetts evidence law that occurred
between October 1, 2008 and December 31, 2009. These additions
include discussion of over thirty decisions issued during
2009 by the Supreme Judicial Court, Appeals Court, and
the federal courts that defined or clarified issues, including
the United States Supreme Court case of Melendez-Diaz
addition, the 2010 edition includes four entirely new sections:
Unemployment Hearing Privilege (Section 526), Inadequate
Police Investigation Evidence (Section 1107), Access to
Third-Party Records Prior to Trial in Criminal Cases (Lampron-Dwyer protocol)
(Section 1108), and View (Section 1109). The 2010 edition
also includes notes on several new topics, including: Successive
Complaints to the First Complaint Witness; Impounding versus
Sealing; Use of Certain Prior Inconsistent Statements of
Defendant in Criminal Cases; Prior Statements that Qualify
as Inconsistent; and Confrontation in Criminal Cases.
2006, the Supreme Judicial Court established a 17-member
Advisory Committee to prepare a Massachusetts Guide to
Evidence at the request of the Massachusetts Bar Association,
the Boston Bar Association, and the Massachusetts Academy
of Trial Attorneys.
2008, the Supreme Judicial Court appointed the Executive
Committee of the Advisory Committee on Massachusetts Evidence
law. This committee monitors and incorporates future legal
developments and is responsible for producing new editions
of the Guide, including the 2010 edition. Appeals Court
Judge R. Marc Kantrowitz, who chaired the Advisory Committee,
chairs the Executive Committee and is the editor-in-chief
of the Guide. The other members of the Executive Committee
are: Hon. Peter W. Agnes (editor), Hon. David A. Lowy (editor),
Appeals Court Clerk Joseph F. Stanton (reporter), Supreme
Judicial Court senior attorney Barbara F. Berenson, New
England Law Boston Professor Philip K. Hamilton, attorney
Elizabeth N. Mulvey, and Appeals Court law clerks Sean
M. Toohey and Allison Carrinski.