In order to prove your case to a jury, you might need to admit evidence such as photographs, recordings, or written statements. To admit these types of evidence, the items will need to follow the state or federal rules of evidence. In general, hearsay is inadmissible unless one of the evidentiary exceptions to the hearsay rule applies. Statements that are made immediately after an event are considered to be present sense impressions and may be admissible as exceptions to the hearsay rule. It is important that you know how to memorialize conversations and events for legal purposes. If you memorialize them correctly, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Craig L. Cook might be able to use them as they prepare your legal case.
How to Memorialize Conversations and Events
There are several ways to memorialize conversations and events. The process typically involves either recording the conversation/event or documenting it in another way while it occurs or immediately afterward. However, memorialized conversations or events must meet certain standards before they will be admissible in court. Follow these steps to learn how to memorialize conversations and events properly:
Memorializing Conversations and Events in Writing
In order to document your conversations and events in writing properly, you should do so immediately after they have occurred. The document must include the date of the writing along with your name as the writer. You should write down everything that you recall from the conversation and what happened in the event. Include information about what happened immediately leading up to the event and what your impressions were. Sign the document. To help to prove when it was written, you can send it by certified, return-receipt mail to your attorney. You can also write your statement and sign it in the presence of a notary.
How to Memorialize Conversations by Recording Them
It is also possible to record conversations to memorialize them. Under Ark. Code § 5-60-120, you are not allowed to record a conversation unless you are a party to it and one person gives consent to the recording. Since you are able to give your own consent to record a conversation that you have with someone else, you do not need to get the other party’s permission. Both Oklahoma and Arkansas are one-party consent states for recorded conversations, allowing you to record the conversations that you have without the other party’s consent. If you record a conversation for legal purposes, note the time and date on the recording itself as well as the speakers’ identities. If you can, forward the recorded conversation directly from your phone to your lawyer if you use a smartphone. If you used a recording device, save the recorded information on the device itself.
How to Memorialize an Event with Photographs
Photographs can be very persuasive types of evidence in injury claims. If you are involved in an accident that was caused by someone else, documenting the scene, the damages that were caused, and your injuries immediately after the accident by taking pictures is important. For example, if you were involved in a car accident that was caused by another driver, try to take photographs of all of the involved vehicles and the damages that happened to each one. Take pictures of the area where the accident happened that capture the entire scene, including street signs, traffic control devices, intersections, and other related things. Take pictures of the road conditions and weather conditions. All of this information may be helpful to your lawyer when he or she is working to build a strong case for you. It may also assist accident reconstruction experts who are trying to recreate what happened in the moments leading up to your accident, and it could even help a jury get a better idea of what happened in your accident.
Why Memorializing Conversations and Events Is Important
As time passes, your memory can fade. Writing down what happened immediately after an accident occurred, recording conversations, and taking photographs can all help to demonstrate what actually occurred. Having this type of evidence available may also help to refresh your memory so that your recall of the events and of your conversations is more accurate. Whether your attorney seeks to have your written or recorded statements admitted into evidence or not, writing them down or recording them can help you later when you are preparing to testify in your case at a deposition or trial.
Contact the Law Offices of Craig L. Cook
Experienced lawyers can help to prepare your case so that you are likelier to succeed. If you make certain to memorialize your conversations and the events that occurred correctly, it might help your attorney in his or her case preparation. Contact the Law Offices of Craig L. Cook today to learn about your rights.