Business-Entry Rule Law and Legal Definition

Business-Entry Rule is an exception to the hearsay rule which allows business records such as reports or memoranda to be admitted into evidence if they were prepared in the ordinary course of business. The basis for the rule is 'the probability of trustworthiness of records because they were routine reflections of the day to day operations of a business'. However this rule does not apply if there is a good reason to doubt a record's reliability. Hospital records are generally admissible as business records to show the case history and the injuries suffered, even though the information is technically hearsay.

The following are examples of case law on the rule:

The business entry rule requires the information to be from one whose duty it is to provide the information, impliedly one with a position within the business which has kept the records. Yet a doctor's or hospital's records are permitted to include medical history provided by a patient on the theory that a patient's own self-interest is best served by a truthful report. [Bruneau v. Borden, Inc., 644 F. Supp. 894 (D. Conn. 1986)]

The test of admissibility of memoranda covered by the business entry rule is the 'regularity' of the business practice in making such a record. [Smith v. Bear, 237 F.2d 79, 89 (2d Cir. N.Y. 1956)]