TO: Joint Procedure Committee
FROM: Mike Hagburg
DATE: January 9, 2014
RE: Rule 1101, N.D.R.Ev., Applicability of Rules
At its December meeting, the Juvenile Policy Board discussed shelter care hearings and whether they should be excepted from the Rules of Evidence as detention hearings are. The board concluded that it would be appropriate to except shelter care hearings from the Rules of Evidence because the court must be able to hear all the evidence available at the time of the hearing. The board indicated that the court could exercise its discretion to limit the weight of problematic evidence such as hearsay within hearsay and also considered that the parents are given an opportunity to rebut any evidence if they are present. The board also concluded that it appears to be the practice across the state to accept hearsay evidence during shelter care hearings. Therefore, the board decided to request that this committee discuss the board's proposal to add shelter care hearings to the proceedings excepted from the Rules of Evidence.
A copy of the proposed amendments to Rule 1101 is attached.