Mass. R. Civ. P. 43
(1996): As result of the merger of the District Court rules into the Mass. R. Civ. P., Rulehas been made applicable to District Court proceedings.
(1973): Except for the deletion of material which is inapplicable to state practice, Ruletracks its federal counterpart. Rule does not affect Massachusetts law since it incorporates existing law on the admissibility of evidence and the competency of witnesses.
Rulefollows Federal Rule . It does not alter Massachusetts practice, which (1) allows interrogation of a hostile witness by leading questions, Commonwealth v. Monahan, 349 Mass. 139 (1965); Commonwealth v. Coshnear, 289 Mass. 516 (1935); (2) allows an adverse party to be called and cross-examined, G.L. c. 233, § ; (3) allows a corporate officer or agent to be examined as an adverse party, G.L. c. 233, § ; (4) permits the adverse party's impeachment, except as to character, G.L. c. 233, § ; Labrie v. Midwood, 273 Mass. 578, 581-582 (1931); and (5) normally permits the adverse party-witness to be "cross-examined" by his own attorney only upon the subject matter of the direct examination. Phillips v. Vorenberg, 259 Mass. 46, 73 (1927). The final sentence of Rule makes it clear that any other witness may be cross-examined without regard to the scope of his testimony on direct, Moody v. Rowell, 34 Mass. (17 Pick.) 490, 498 (1835), subject only to the trial judge's sound discretion, Commonwealth v. Granito, 326 Mass. 494 (1950).
Ruleis similar to prior Massachusetts practice. If an objection to the admission of evidence is sustained, the proponent of the evidence should make an offer of proof, to preserve the record. See Petition of Mackintosh, 268 Mass. 138, 139 (1929); cases collected in Hughes, Massachusetts Evidence, 240-242 (1961). Note that if the evidence is excluded on cross-examination, the offer of proof need not be made. Stevens v. William S. Howe Co., 275 Mass. 398, 402 (1931).
Rule, dealing with oaths, is basically the same as G.L. c. 233, §§ to .
Ruleis supported by Super. Ct. Rule , although the latter does not specifically allow the introduction of oral testimony or depositions.
Rule, dealing with interpreters, follows Federal Rule . Massachusetts appears not to have had any settled practice on this question.
Rulewhich does not appear in the Federal Rules, is taken virtually verbatim from Super. Ct. Rule , and embodies long-settled Massachusetts courtroom etiquette.