Witness Impeachment by Reference to An Appraisal Report
California Code of Civil Procedure Section 1255.060 expressly forbids the impeachment of a witness by reference to any appraisal report made in connection with the deposit of probable compensation. ( 1255.060, subds. (a) - (b).)
Section 1255.060, subdivisions (a) and (b) state, "(a) the amount deposited or withdrawn pursuant to this chapter shall not be given in evidence or referred to in the trial of the issue of compensation. (b) In the trial of the issue of compensation, a witness may not be impeached by reference to any appraisal report, written statement and summary of an appraisal, or other statements made in connection with a deposit or withdrawal pursuant to this chapter, nor shall such a report or statement and summary be considered to be an admission of any party."
The Law Revision Commission Comment to section 1255.060 states that ". . . the purpose of subdivision (b) . . . is to encourage the plaintiff condemning agency to make an adequate deposit by protecting the plaintiff condemning agency from the defendant's landowner's use of the evidence upon which the deposit is based in the trial on the issue of compensation.
If such evidence could be so used, it is likely that the plaintiff would make an inadequate deposit in order to protect itself against the use at the trial of evidence submitted in connection with the deposit. . . . Subdivision (b) precludes impeachment of a witness at the trial by reference to appraisal reports . . . or other statements made in connection with the deposit and notice thereof and proceedings to determine or redetermine the amount of the deposit."