Jury instructions: A selective bibliography of subject compilations

Jane M. Williams

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    A trial judge instructing the jury in the law must state the instructions in language that is both understandable to the jury and non-prejudicial to the litigants. Pattern jury instructions, also described as model, uniform, approved and standardized, are tools designed to simplify the process of issuing jury instructions and to promote consistency among judges. Compilations of jury instructions drafted by bar associations and the courts have been drafted for most states and for several of the federal courts.1 Seven states mandate the use of their model jury instructions.2 Standard jury instructions requested by a party must be given if they apply and state the applicable law. The judge, however, has the discretion to determine whether the standard instructions are applicable.3 If the pattern instructions do not include a relevant instruction one can look to a variety of sources including other state or federal jury instructions or to subject compilations of instructions.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)123-135
    Number of pages13
    JournalLegal Reference Services Quarterly
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Library and Information Sciences
    • Law


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