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Witnesses - Attendance, Right To Compensation, Expert Witnesses, Relationship To A Party, Privileged Communications, Credibility - Competency

legal proceedings set evidence

Individuals who provide evidence in legal proceedings before a tribunal. Persons who give testimony under oath in court, concerning what they have seen, heard, or otherwise observed.

Legal proceedings, especially trials, depend on witnesses to present factual evidence to the fact finder, which may be a judge or a jury. Typically each party in a dispute has its own set of witnesses. All witnesses, however, must submit to cross-examination, which means being questioned by the opposing party.

Competency

The general rule is that a person is competent to testify if he is able to perceive, remember, and communicate, and believes that he is morally obligated to tell the truth. Legislatures have the authority to set a standard of competency for witnesses in all cases. In the case of young children, the court must assess whether the child is competent to testify.

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