Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities ex rel. Wynkoop v. NERAC Inc.
In an administrative hearing even hearsay evidence can be admitted, if it has probative value, pursuant to Hultman v. Department of Social Services, a 2000 decision of the Connecticut Superior Court. The respondent, NERAC, allegedly filed a motion in limine to preclude entire classes of evidence that could have probative value. In Salmon v. Department of Public Health and Addiction Services, a 2002 decision, the court wrote, "Administrative tribunals are not strictly bound by the rules of evidence and may consider evidence which would normally be incompetent in a judicial proceeding." Presiding Human Rights Referee Michele Mount found that NERAC's motion in limine was prophylactic and of a general nature, as opposed to specific requests. To grant the respondent's motion to preclude evidence of patterns of companywide discrimination, wrote the human rights referee, would deny the complainants their due-process rights to present all the evidence in support of their complaints. "The public policy of the State of Connecticut," wrote the human rights referee, "favors disclosure of, and admittance of, any probative evidence that will tend to aid the trier of fact in its determination."