Criminal Law

360. Statements to an Expert

<Insert name> testified that in reaching (his/her) conclusions as an expert witness, (he/she) considered [a] statement[s] made by <insert name>. [I am referring only to the statement[s] <insert or describe statements admitted for this limited purpose>.] You may consider (that/those) statement[s] only to evaluate the expert's opinion. Do not consider (that/those) statements as proof that the information contained in the statement[s] is true.

Bench Notes

Instructional Duty

Although the court has no sua sponte duty to give this instruction, it should be given if appropriate under the circumstances. (People v. Cantrell (1973) 8 Cal.3d 672, 683 [105 Cal.Rptr. 792, 504 P.2d 1256], disapproved on other grounds in People v. Wetmore (1978) 22 Cal.3d 318, 324 [149 Cal.Rptr. 265, 583 P.2d 1308] and People v. Flannel (1979) 25 Cal.3d 668, 684-685, fn. 12 [160 Cal.Rptr. 84, 603 P.2d 1].)

This instruction should not be given if all of the statements relied on by the expert were admitted under applicable hearsay exceptions. If some but not all of the defendant's statements were admitted for the limited purpose of evaluating the expert's testimony, specify those statements in the bracketed sentence.


Instructional Requirements. In re Spencer (1965) 63 Cal.2d 400, 412 [46 Cal.Rptr. 753, 406 P.2d 33].

Secondary Sources

5 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (3d ed. 2000) Criminal Trial, § 113.

3 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 71, Scientific and Expert Evidence, § 71.04 (Matthew Bender).

4 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 85, Submission to Jury and Verdict, § 85.02[2][b] (Matthew Bender).

(New January 2006)