Rule 103. Rulings on Evidence

 

(a)   Preserving a Claim of Error. A party may claim error in a ruling to admit or exclude evidence only if the error affects a substantial right of the party and:

 

(1)   if the ruling admits evidence, a party, on the record:

 

(A)   timely objects or moves to strike; and

 

(B) states the specific ground, unless it was apparent from the context; or

 

(2)   if the ruling excludes evidence, a party informs the court of its substance by an offer of proof, unless the substance was apparent from the context.

 

(b)   Not Needing to Renew an Objection or Offer of Proof. Once the court rules definitively on the record — either before or at trial — a party need not renew an objection or offer of proof to preserve a claim of error for appeal.

 

(c)   Court’s Statement About the Ruling; Directing an Offer of Proof. The court may make any statement about the character or form of the evidence, the objection made, and the ruling. The court may direct that an offer of proof be made in question-and-answer form.

 

(d)   Preventing the Jury from Hearing Inadmissible Evidence. To the extent practicable, the court must conduct a jury trial so that inadmissible evidence is not suggested to the jury by any means.

 

(e)   Taking Notice of Plain Error. A court may take notice of a plain error affecting a substantial right, even if the claim of error was not properly preserved.

 

2011 Advisory Committee Note. – The language of this rule has been amended as part of the restyling of the Evidence Rules to make them more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules. These changes are intended to be stylistic only. There is no intent to change any result in any ruling on evidence admissibility. This rule is the federal rule, verbatim.

 

ADVISORY COMMITTEE NOTE

 

This rule is the federal rule, verbatim. The 2001 amendment adopts changes made in Federal Rule of Evidence 103(a) effective December 1, 2000.