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Evidence of Subsequent Corrective Action

Evidence of remedial action taken after an event is generally not admissible in court.

Key Point Generally, evidence of corrective or remedial actions taken after an accident or injury are not admissible in evidence to prove negligence, since this would discourage persons from correcting dangerous conditions.

A Connecticut court ruled that a sexual abuse victim could not obtain copies of all sex abuse training materials used or distributed by a Catholic diocese in a lawsuit he brought against the diocese. A Catholic diocese was sued by a person (the "plaintiff") who allegedly was sexually abused by a priest in 1978. The plaintiff requested copies of "any and all sexual abuse training materials" that were "distributed or utilized within the diocese." The plaintiff claimed that post-1978 materials were relevant since they would tend to show preventative actions that could have been taken in 1978 and before, and that they would "tend to show later corrective action and that at ...

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Richard R. Hammar is an attorney, CPA and author specializing in legal and tax issues for churches and clergy.

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Posted:
  • July 1, 2009

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