We have been advising clients for some time to use Google maps to calculate mileage to IME’s in the IL WC system. We are now noting other courts are using this internet search for the same purpose.
Judicial notice is a doctrine of evidence applied by a court that allows the court to recognize and accept the existence of a particular fact commonly known by persons of average intelligence without establishing its existence by admitting evidence in a civil or criminal action. Federal Rule of Evidence 201(b) provides a judicially noticed fact must be one not subject to reasonable dispute in that it is either (1) generally known within the territorial jurisdiction of the trial court or (2) capable of accurate and ready determination by resort to sources whose accuracy cannot reasonably be questioned.
According to the recent opinion of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York in United States v. Sessa, 2011 WL 256330 (E.D.N.Y. 2011), relied on Google maps in a relatively racy mob murder trial.
The U.S. District Court in its ruling outlined any court may take judicial notice of facts that are "capable of accurate and ready determination by resort to sources whose accuracy cannot reasonably be questioned." Fed.R.Evid. R. 201(b). "Courts commonly use internet mapping tools to take judicial notice of distance and geography."
We appreciate your thoughts and comments.