The Federal Rules of Evidence have been in effect since 1975. Six years of experience is not much time in which to assess such a complex and important body of law. Nevertheless, there is now some "evidence" of the impact of the Federal Rules on the various states and circuits.
The Rules do seem to have proved successful enough to stimulate widespread imitation. Approximately half the states in the United States have or will very shortly have evidence codes patterned substantially on the Rules, even down to their numbers. Many of the remaining states (e.g., Iowa, Illinois, and Pennsylvania) have already adopted individual Federal Rules by decision, and have indicated a willingness to adopt more in the future. At a series of evidence codification meetings in both New York and Canada, it became apparent that the Federal Rules will also exert considerable influence on new codes even in those important and usually very independent jurisdictions. In addition, the Uniform Law Commissioners have amended their Uniform Rules of Evidence to conform almost precisely to the Federal Rules, and administrative agencies are relying on the Federal Rules more and more.
Fed. B. News & J., Dec. 1981, at 282, 283
Scholarly Commons Citation
Rothstein, Paul F., "The Federal Rules of Evidence: Six Years After" (1981). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 713.