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 ?
In "Religion and the Law: Evidence, Proof and 'Matter of Fact', 1660-1830" Barbara Shapiro contends that legal reasoning could and did transcend the law.
He did, as a matter of fact, out of his own interest, teach physics in a private high school, at a Hebrew academy, in the city of San Francisco.
As a matter of fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Position Paper (1) supports the implementation of strength training so long as it is monitored by a trained adult and all of the medical considerations have been taken into account.
As a matter of fact, I know Janet Joy to be a loyal member of the Catholic Church, very active in her parish, who has served time in jail in the defence of the unborn in Vancouver.
Teens will love this not just because it is titillating but also because it is informative, matter of fact, and useful.
Let me tell him as a matter of fact that parts of England have had six million immigrants over the past 40 years during which the crime, divorce and fatherless children he deplores have risen from very low to very high.
AS A MATTER of fact, start analyzing the phenomenon of the season and perhaps the decade, The Producers, and you find a show with many of the same basic elements as 42nd Street.
Far from being itself perceived as an established truth, a "matter of fact" was an issue placed before a jury; not to be considered true or believable until evidence had been presented: "The act, the fact, thus required proof" (10).
As a matter of fact, several studies have shown that offices these days actually use more paper than ever.
As a matter of fact, Buck Stop is so sure of its Red Fox Urine's efficacy that the company backs it with an unconditional, 100 percent money-back guarantee: According to the company, if you don't see instant results--if you don't hag more bucks--with Buck Stop Red Fox Urine, simply return it for a complete refund, no questions asked!
As a matter of fact, The New York Times of December 18, 1999, drew up a much better list of lousy decisions.
As a matter of fact there are times when I am apt To feel it close in tight against my sense Like a caul in which I was born and still am wrapped.