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Texas Wesleyan Law Review




Since arbitrators are not bound by the strict rules of evidence applicable in court, there originally developed a practice of admitting hearsay 'for what it is worth.' As various texts and many arbitrators have stated, 'Rarely do the parties know what it is worth, at least not at the hearing.' I would add, nor in the preparation of their briefs. As far back as 1967 a prominent group of arbitrators concluded: 'Unless corroborated by truth-tending circumstances in the environment in which it is uttered, it (hearsay) is unreliable evidence and should be received with mounting skepticism of its probative value as it becomes more remote and more filtered.' This statement strengthened the underpinnings of the practice of receiving hearsay, but limiting its probative value. It is reflected, e.g., in the following comment on the 'for what it is worth,' if anything, concept: In accepting it, however, the arbitrator is expected to have the expertise and experience to properly evaluate the evidence and to accord it the appropriate weight dependent upon the corroborating circumstances surrounding it.

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Texas Wesleyan University School of Law

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