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What does “Objection, Leading Question” mean?



When a defense attorney jumps up during a trial and yells “Your Honor, Objection, leading question” want to know what that really means?

Come join me as I share that information with you.

It means the defense attorney does not believe the witness should answer the question because the question itself really suggests the answer. It means that the witness needs to only agree or disagree with the statement made in the question.

Let me give you a perfect example.

“Doctor, isn’t it true you graduated from NYU Medical School?”

“Objection, leading question.”

Yes, it’s true that that is a leading question. On the other hand I could have asked, “Doctor, where did you go to medical school?”

When asking a doctor about his credentials, the judge will typically give the attorney some leeway in asking limited leading questions in order to move the questioning along. The thinking is that it really doesn’t matter whether the attorney suggests the answer in these questions about his credentials or the doctor answers an open-ended question.

After the defense lawyer objects, the judge then must make a ruling about whether the defense attorney is right or not. If the judge agrees with the defense lawyer’s objection, he will then say “Objection sustained.” That means that the witness is not to answer the question and your attorney must then rephrase the question another way.

If the judge does not agree with the objection raised by the defense lawyer, he will say “Objection overruled.” That means that the witness is permitted to answer the question.