Both in preparing and in presenting and deciding arbitration cases, an understanding of the basic rules of evidence is important. Without an understanding of the rules of evidence, an advocate cannot determine what documents and witness testimony will be admissible and persuasive. An understanding of the rules is also critical in determining who has the burden of persuasion and the quantum of proof required.
Over the next three issues of the DRJ, the authors will address the following key elements in understanding the role that evidence plays in the arbitration process:
1. Burden of Proof; 2. Different Types of Evidence; 3. The Role of Witnesses in Evidentiary Hearings; 4. Admissibility of Evidence including:
a. Understanding Relevance and Materiality b. Determining the Reliability of different forms of Evidence.
5. Issues of Fundamental Fairness including:
a. Affidavits and Declarations; b. Parallel Criminal Proceedings; c. Offers of Settlement or Compromise d. Privileged Communications
We begin our discussion by addressing the role and importance of the Rules of Evidence in arbitration proceedings.