Washington Law Review


Professor Trautman, long a student of Washington's adjective law, analyzes and compares the various motions a Washington attorney may invoke to challenge the sufficiency of an opponent's evidence during and after trial. In comparing the motion for new trial on evidentiary grounds and the motion for judgment n.o.v., he notes and deplores the recent decisions which have made the tests for the two motions identical. Prior to this change, the trial judge could weigh all the evidence and in his discretion grant a new trial if the evidence preponderated against the jury's verdict. Today, he may only determine whether, as a matter of law, there is substantial evidence to support the verdict. In effect, these decisions have eliminated one of the previously available methods for testing the sufficiency of an opponent's evidence without demonstrating any reason for doing so.

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