Matter of Fact

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Matter of Fact

That which is to be determined by the senses or by the testimony of witnesses who describe what they have perceived through the senses of sight, smell, touch, taste, and hearing.

Trials are highly complex forums for the consideration of fact, opinion, and law. Each area is distinct in its type and in who has responsibility for evaluating it. Courts use the term matter of fact to distinguish a particular kind of information. A fact is a thing done—an actual occurrence or event—and it is presented during a trial in the form of testimony and evidence. The rules of evidence generally allow witnesses to testify as to what they personally know about the facts in dispute, but do not allow witnesses to testify as to their opinions (i.e., thoughts, beliefs, or inferences) in regard to those facts. An exception is made for expert witnesses, whose technical or scientific specialty is considered sufficient to allow them to state their opinion on relevant and material matters.

Facts are often difficult to ascertain because the record is unclear or because competing interpretations of the facts are presented. questions of fact are for the jury, which must weigh their validity in reaching a verdict. The jury's role is kept distinct from that of the court, which has the authority to rule on all matters of law.

Cross-references

Matter of Law.

See: certification, fait accompli, prosaic, unpretentious

MATTER OF FACT, pleading. Matter which goes in denial of a declaration, and Dot in avoidance of it. Bac. Ab. Pleas, &c. G 3; Hob. 127.

References in periodicals archive ?
played with a philosophical matter-of-factness by Joseph Porter) as he is writing to his pen pal.
Perhaps most disarming of all was McInnerny's matter-of-factness when he addressed the audience directly.
Easily distinguishable, it fitted well into a cultural framework that extended from the morality and meaningfulness of Buckminster Fuller at one corner, the matter-of-factness of 'knock-down' and 'do-it-yourself' at the other, and came from the same world as the bright-eyed kid with a box of 'Meccano' or the determined young man with his legs sticking out of some machine assuring us that it would perform/fly/sing/inflate/take to the road or whatever .
Nasal belt is often used for the heightened projection it provides and can convey matter-of-factness and conviction.
They do what they do with the matter-of-factness of a teacher writing 2+2=4 on a blackboard or a plumber repairing a sink.
I harbored no such professional obligations, however, and remained fascinated by the theater's everyday realities--the costume fittings, understudy rehearsals and union rules that were discussed with delightful matter-of-factness over the dinner table.
The matter-of-factness of these stories is what makes them (oftentimes simultaneously) radical, hilarious, poignant, a little dirty (as my mom would say) and soothing.
As a photographer, I prefer my photos to do the talking for me, but the furore caused by last month's photo essay has prompted me to pick up my pen in defence of my courageous co-editors, and the carers and their elderly charges, who so willingly allowed me to document the matter-of-factness of their lives.
McCormack added that the show's lasting legacy wouldn't be whether Will plays dueling tongues with another guy but rather the week-after-week, year-after-year matter-of-factness of his sexuality.
Of course I knew my role in the investigation would end sooner or later, but it hadn't crossed my mind that I would be eliminated with such matter-of-factness and at such an interesting point.
When you read Rowling, her tartly deadpan British commonsensical voice grounds the wizardry, making it seem almost funny in its matter-of-factness.
Whereas Shakespeare enables his audience to experience a kind of vicarious resistance to Goneril and Regan through the medium of the defiant servant at the end of act 3, "Bond wants playgoers to witness and recognize their own cowed permissiveness and passivity in the unresisting matter-of-factness of characters who willingly act out their roles as torturers" (164).