Subsequent Remedial Measures

When measures are taken that would have made an earlier injury or harm less likely to occur, evidence of the subsequent measures is not admissible to prove:

  • negligence;
  • culpable conduct;
  • a defect in a product or its design; or
  • a need for a warning or instruction.

But the court may admit this evidence for another purpose, such as impeachment or — if disputed — proving ownership, control, or the feasibility of precautionary measures.

This is a French rule.

Subsequent remedial measures are admissible for direct impeachment but not indirect impeachment.

Direct Impeachment

Impeachment is direct impeachment if, in light of the subsequent remedial measure, the testimony is likely untrue.

The more expansive the view of feasibility (including more than that it is merely possible, such as that it was a good idea), the more likely there is to be disagreement over it and thus the more likely subsequent remedial measures are to be allowed.