Mastering Objections and the Rules of Evidence

Objections in Mock Trial are rooted in the Federal Rules of Evidence. These rules are developed and adopted by the Supreme Court that govern how evidence can be used or admitted during the trial.

There are rare cases where in some states, objections may be rooted in another form of the Rules of Evidence. You will need to check with your Mock Trial moderator or with your state’s bar association.

Today, this article will base its rules around the “National High School Mock Trial Championship” Federal Rules of Evidence. These rules are adopted for Mock Trial and specifically, the National High School Mock Trial Championship. You may download a copy in the Resources section of this website.

In the rules of evidence, there will be ten (X) articles that list out the rules. However, there are only four important rules that this guide will list out. The other rules are rarely used.

If you want to skip through this guide to the specific rules, click here:

  • Article IV – Relevance and it’s Limits
  • Article VI – Witnesses
  • Article VII – Opinions and Expert Testimony
  • Article VIII – Hearsay

Overview of Objections

In this article, we’re going to talk about mastering objections and the rules of evidence. Objections are the most important skill that you must learn as an attorney as it is used as leverage during a trial. When you say “Objection,” you are pointing out a legal issue in the line of questioning or answer during the trial. There are two forms of objections and they are:

  • Procedural Objections¬†– These are made when there are legal issues with the question on how it is asked or phrased.
  • Substantive Objections¬†– These are made when there are legal issues with the content of the question or answer.

How to Object

Stand >> Object >> Grounds >> Stop

  1. Stand: Before you can object, you must stand up before you say a word.
  2. Object: Say the word “Objection”
  3. Grounds: State the grounds for the Objection
  4. Stop: Let the other side respond to the Objection