Friday, February 21, 2020
Kentucky Rule of Evidence 801A(c)(3) reads as follows:
(c) Admission by privity:...
(3) Predecessors in litigation. Even though the declarant is available as a witness, when the liability, obligation, or duty of a party to a civil action is based in whole or in part upon the liability, obligation, or duty of the declarant, or when the claim or right asserted by a party to a civil action is barred or diminished by a breach of duty by the declarant, evidence of a statement made by the declarant is not excluded by the hearsay rule when offered against the party if the evidence would be admissible against the declarant in an action involving that liability, obligation, duty, or breach of duty.
So, imagine that Paula is walking up the steps to Rob's Ribs when she trips and falls, spraining her ankle. Furthermore, assume that, in the wake of the accident, Rob makes a statement admitting that he had failed to replace broken lights outside his restaurant and that the dim lighting outside the restaurant likely caused Paula's fall. Finally, assume that Rick later buys out Rob's Ribs and renames the restaurant Rick's Ribs. If Paula thereafter sues Rick's Ribs for her injury, Rob's statement(s) would be admissible because the liability of Rick's Ribs is based upon the liability of Rob, the declarant and Rick's predecessor in interest.