Delaware Rules of Evidence

Rules of Evidence are a set of evidence rules that authorize how to collect, present and apply evidence for each case.  Delaware Uniform Rules of Evidence govern proceedings in the courts of Delaware.  Delaware Uniform Rules of Evidence apply to all actions and proceedings in the courts of this state.  However, the rules other than those with respect to privileges do not apply in the following situations:

  • During determination of questions of fact preliminary to admissibility of evidence when the issue is to be determined by the court under Rule 104(a).
  • Proceedings before grand juries.
  • Miscellaneous proceedings such as for extradition or rendition; detention hearing in criminal hearings, sentencing or granting or revoking probation; issuance of warrants for arrest, criminal summonses and search warrants; and proceedings with respect to release on bail or otherwise.
  • Contempt proceedings in which the court may act summarily.
  • In preliminary hearings in criminal cases the court is not bound by these Rules of Evidence except with respect to privileges.

These Rules shall be construed to secure fairness in administration, elimination of unjustifiable expense and delay and promotion of growth and development of the law of evidence to the end that the truth may be ascertained and proceedings justly determined.

Table of Contents of Delaware Rules of Evidence.

ARTICLE I. GENERAL PROVISIONS 6

Rule 101. Scope

Rule 102. Purpose and construction

Rule 103. Rulings on evidence

Rule 104. Preliminary questions

Rule 105. Limited admissibility

Rule 106. Remainder of or related writings or recorded statements

ARTICLE II. JUDICIAL NOTICE 2

Rule 201. Judicial notice of adjudicative facts

Rule 202. Judicial notice of law

ARTICLE III. PRESUMPTIONS IN CIVIL ACTIONS AND PROCEEDINGS 4

Rule 301. Presumptions in general in civil actions and proceedings

Rule 302. Applicability of state law in civil actions and proceedings

Rule 303. Effect of presumptions in criminal cases

Rule 304. Res ipsa loquitur

ARTICLE IV. RELEVANCY AND ITS LIMITS 15

Rule 401. Definition of “relevant evidence.”

Rule 402. Relevant evidence generally admissible; irrelevant evidence inadmissible

Rule 403. Exclusion of relevant evidence on grounds of prejudice, confusion or waste of time

Rule 404. Character evidence not admissible to prove conduct; exceptions; other crimes

Rule 405. Methods of proving character

Rule 406. Habit; routine practice

Rule 407. Subsequent remedial measures

Rule 408. Compromise and offers to compromise

Rule 409. Payment of medical and similar expenses

Rule 410. Inadmissibility of pleas, offers of pleas and related statements

Rule 411. Liability insurance

Rule 412. Rape cases; relevance of victim’s past behavior

Rule 413. Evidence of Similar Crimes in Sexual Assault Cases

Rule 414. Evidence of Similar Crimes in Child Molestation Cases

Rule 415. Evidence of Similar Acts in Civil Cases Concerning Sexual Assault or Child Molestation

ARTICLE V. PRIVILEGES 13

Rule 501. Privileges recognized only as provided

Rule 502. Lawyer-client privilege

Rule 503. Mental health provider, physician, and psychotherapist-patient privilege

Rule 504. Husband-wife privilege

Rule 505. Religious privilege

Rule 506. Political vote

Rule 507. Trade secrets

Rule 508. Secrets of State and other official information; governmental privileges

Rule 509. Identity of informer

Rule 510. Waiver of privilege by voluntary disclosure

Rule 511. Privileged matter disclosed under compulsion or without opportunity to claim privilege

Rule 512. Comment upon or inference from claim of privilege; instruction

Rule 513. Reporter’s privilege

ARTICLE VI. WITNESSES 16

Rule 601. General rule of competency

Rule 602. Lack of personal knowledge

Rule 603. Oath or affirmation

Rule 604. Interpreters

Rule 605. Competency of judge as witness

Rule 606. Competency of juror as witness

Rule 607. Who may impeach

Rule 608. Evidence of character and conduct of witness

Rule 609. Impeachment by evidence of conviction of crime

Rule 610. Religious beliefs or opinions

Rule 611. Mode and order of interrogation and presentation

Rule 612. Writing or object used to refresh memory

Rule 613. Prior statements of witnesses

Rule 614. Calling and interrogation of witnesses by court

Rule 615. Exclusion of witnesses

Rule 616. Bias of witness

ARTICLE VII. OPINIONS AND EXPERT TESTIMONY 6

Rule 701. Opinion testimony by lay witnesses

Rule 702. Testimony by experts

Rule 703. Bases of opinion testimony by experts

Rule 704. Opinion on ultimate issue

Rule 705. Disclosure of facts or data underlying expert opinion

Rule 706. Court-appointed experts

ARTICLE VIII. HEARSAY 7

Rule 801. Definitions

Rule 802. Hearsay rule

Rule 803. Hearsay exceptions; availability of declarant immaterial

Rule 804. Hearsay exceptions; declarant unavailable

Rule 805. Hearsay within hearsay

Rule 806. Attacking and supporting credibility of declarant

Rule 807. Residual exception

ARTICLE IX. AUTHENTICATION AND IDENTIFICATION 3

Rule 901. Requirement of authentication or identification

Rule 902. Self-authentication

Rule 903. Subscribing witness’ testimony unnecessary

ARTICLE X. CONTENTS OF WRITINGS, RECORDINGS, AND PHOTOGRAPHS 8

Rule 1001. Definitions

Rule 1002. Requirement of original

Rule 1003. Admissibility of duplicates

Rule 1004. Admissibility of other evidence of contents

Rule 1005. Public records

Rule 1006. Summaries

Rule 1007. Testimony or written admission of party

Rule 1008. Functions of court and jury

ARTICLE XI. MISCELLANEOUS RULES 3

Rule 1101. Applicability of rules and definitions

Rule 1102. Title

Rule 1103. Effective date

APPENDIX 1

Table of changes from federal rules of evidence

Delaware Rules of Evidence


Inside Delaware Rules of Evidence