Open the door

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Open the door refers to a statement at trial that allows otherwise inadmissible evidence by the other side to be introduced as evidence. This fundamental legal doctrine appears in thousands of cases.

For example, from Illinois:

Plaintiff correctly notes that a party can open the door to using otherwise excluded evidence. See Rush v. Hamdy, 255 Ill. App. 3d 352, 366, 627 N.E.2d 1119, 194 Ill. Dec. 477 (1993) (the defendants opened the door to excluded testimony of one phone call where they introduced testimony of other phone calls); Hamrock v. Henry, 222 Ill. App. 3d 487, 495, 584 N.E.2d 204, 165 Ill. Dec. 25 (1991) (the plaintiff opened the door to questions about her pension when she testified that the pension board referred her to a doctor). Plaintiff asserts that here, defendants opened the door to the scope of employment requests to admit by cross-examining Bryant-Rogers extensively about her understanding of her employment at the time of the accident. Plaintiff points to defendants' specific question, "Wouldn't you agree that at the exact moment of the accident, you weren't working at all?", to which Bryant-Rogers replied, "No, I was not working."

Ricciardi v. Allstate Corp., 2019 IL App (1st) 182078-U, ¶ 35.