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Judicial Notice

To prove facts at trial, you need to typically present evidence or a stipulation as to certain facts. Evidence generally comes in the form of witness testimony and/or documentation. In some cases, the Court may take “judicial notice” of things that are “commonly known.” Mince v. Mince, 481 S.W.3d 610 (Mo. Ct. App. 1972). For instance, it would likely be appropriate for the Court to take judicial notice that the tenth day of a particular month fell on a certain day of the week (assuming that fact is relevant in a case). Judicial notice, therefore, is frequently used by attorneys and litigants to establish generally known and ascertainable facts to avoid having to present evidence on every proposed fact. 

A common way in which judicial notice is used is to establish the litigation history between parties and/or the filing of other public documents (e.g., deeds). There is a general rule that a court may take judicial notice of its own records, dispensing with the necessity of identify the records of another case in the same court. Livingston v. Webster County Bank, 868 S.W.2d 154 (Mo. Ct. App. 1994). 

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