A5 above: Do U mean if the witnessing doctor refuse to come to court, then their certification of injuries will be worthless bcs they cannot be presented for trial?
A: Yes, that's exactly what I mean. At trial, the written declaration of a witness is inadmissible hearsay. In order for a witness' testimony to be admissible, the witness must testify to the facts. The diagnosis of a physical illness or injury requires expert testimony, which must be presented by witness testimony.
Note: In California, there is a legal procedure that is in between small claims court and regular ("unlimited") civil court, called a "limited" civil action -- where the amount in controversy is $25,000 or less, exclusive of attorney's fees, interest and costs -- and which does not include certain types of cases (e.g., Family Law; see CCP Sections 85-89). In a limited civil action, the ordinary rules of evidence are reduced, so that witnesses do not have to testify in person -- but only if the procedure in CCP Section 98 is followed.
In an "unlimted" civil action, the witnesses must testify in person, or by reading their deposition into the court record -- assuming that they were deposed before a court reporter and the opposing party had an opportunity to cross examine.
If Yes, then deposition with a video recorder would be a good solution, wdn't it? This would be a very brief depo bcs the witness doctor only spend a few minutes to reaffirm his certification, e.g. "Yes I examined him that date and I found such bruises as I stated on that paper" and that's it. Correct? But then only the video (or transcript) of depo will be viewed by the jury and not his certification?
A: Yes, you could do this.
Again, what is "read into the record". (1) How is it done? (2) How does it reach the jury?
A: The technique is called "recollection refreshed -- past recollection recorded." Evid Code 1237. It requires that the witness made a record of something at or near the time of the event, and that the witness cannot accurately recall the record (e.g., due to its voluminous size, or because of its technical nature). It also requires that the record must have originally been made by the witness. So, for example, if you made a recording of someone else, unless that someone else is a party to the case, you cannot use the recording to substitute for the person's live testimony, unless the person is testifying as a witness and the person cannot recall the contents of the conversation that was recorded.
There are a huge number of twists and turns concerning the use of audio and/or video recordings at trial. I would have to write a 10,000 word treatise to cover everything. If you want me to discuss a particular instance, then you will have to disclose the nature of the recording and how you propose to use it at trial, and I can then try to determine how you could get it into evidence.
Hope this helps.