Under the Federal Rules of Evidence, hearsay is generally prohibited, being admitted only when it falls within a limited class of specific hearsay exceptions. Two general hearsay exceptions were, however, engrafted onto the list of specific ones to allow the courts to confront new and unforseen hearsay problem Lower courts have interpreted these "residual" or "catchall" exceptions differently.
This Article analyzes judicial interpretations of the residual exceptions in cases considering the admissibility of grandjury testimony. The author initially discusses the traditional hearsay approach and reviews the legislative history of the residual exceptions. He then analyzes Fourth Circuit cases considering the admissibility of grand jury testimony, maintaining that the corroboration approach to the residual exceptions foreshadows a greatly changed hearsay structure. The author proposes standards for interpreting the residual hearsay exceptions' equivalent circumstantial guarantee of trustworthiness requirement and concludes by applying it to the grand jury cases.
Case Western Reserve Law Review, Vol. 36, Issue 3 (1985-1986), pp. 431-482