testify

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Testify

To provide evidence as a witness, subject to an oath or affirmation, in order to establish a particular fact or set of facts.

Court rules require witnesses to testify about the facts they know that are relevant to the determination of the outcome of the case. Under the law a person may not testify until he is sworn in. This requirement is usually met by a witness swearing to speak the truth. A person who does not believe in appealing to God may affirm to the court that the testimony about to be given is the truth.

A witness may testify as to facts directly observed, which is called direct evidence; facts learned indirectly, which is called Circumstantial Evidence; or, in the case of an expert, an opinion the expert has formed based on facts embodied in a hypothetical question. The parties to the court proceeding are free to question a witness as to the truthfulness of the testimony or the competence of the witness.

The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gives the defendant in a criminal trial the right not to testify, so as to avoid Self-Incrimination. In addition, the rule that a person must testify when called as a witness has several exceptions based on the existence of a special relationship between the defendant and the potential witness. Among the most important of these exceptions are confidential communications between a husband and a wife, an attorney and a client, a doctor and a patient, and a priest and penitent.

The rules of evidence govern what a person may testify about at a court proceeding. Though there are numerous exceptions, generally a witness may not testify about what she heard another say if that testimony is offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted. Such testimony is known as Hearsay. For example, if the witness testifies that he heard that john doe was married and this statement is offered to prove that John Doe was married, it is hearsay and the court will strike the testimony from the record.

Cross-references

Attorney-Client Privilege; Marital Communications Privilege; Physician-Patient Privilege; Privileged Communication.

testify

v. to give oral evidence under oath in answer to questions posed by attorneys either at trial or at a deposition (testimony under oath outside of court), with the opportunity for opposing attorneys to cross-examine the witness in regard to answers given. (See: testimony, trial, deposition, evidence)

testify

verb acknowledge openly, affirm, affirm under oath, allege, assert, asseverate, attest, aver, avow, be sworn, bear witness, declare, depone, depose, establish, express, give evidence, give one's word, indicate, make solemn declaration, profess, prove, show, state, state a fact, state a truth, swear, take one's oath, take the stand, testari, testificari, verify
Associated concepts: compulsion to testify, privilege against self-incrimination, testify in one's own defense, testify under oath
See also: acknowledge, adduce, attest, avouch, avow, bear, bespeak, certify, inform, manifest, notify, posit, promise, swear, verify, vouch, vow

testify

to give TESTIMONY.

TO TESTIFY. To give evidence according to law; the examination of a witness who declares his knowledge of facts.

References in periodicals archive ?
Loaded with critical and necessary information, chapter 2 contains tips for testifying officers, including nonverbal persuasion, whether to wear jewelry, how to properly take the witness stand, and the indicators of witness deception, as seen by courtroom attorneys and jury members.
However, by the time of Trigon's request, many of the draft reports had been deleted as a result of AGE's document retention policy--and the document retention policies of the individual practices of the testifying experts--which did not call for the retention of draft expert reports.
who spends 20 percent of his time testifying in medical malpractice cases and hires experts to review cases for the Florida Board of Medicine.
Funny, because legal critics have been complaining about expert witnesses--about their unreliability and their willingness to say whatever they were paid to say--ever since these pointy-headed hired guns started testifying.
When testifying for hours on the stand, emphasis tells the jury what is important.
When testifying under "Miranda Warning," Burke elected to exercise her right to not answer any questions or make further statements.
Officers testifying as witnesses do not face serious personal consequences.
Perhaps the most formal method of liaison is testifying at committee hearings.
Dixon was clearly hesitant about testifying against her boyfriend.
Ebrahim said they can still prosecute Josif Jurcoane without Susan Jurcoane testifying in court.
Although the reduced charge would carry a life sentence in prison - the same as if he is convicted of first-degree murder - Jonas said he was trying to spare witnesses the emotional pain of testifying.
SAN FERNANDO - At hourly rates of $100 to $500, expert witnesses testifying for and against Sandi Nieves will be paid more than $150,000 before the end of her quadruple-murder trial, officials say.