What Kinds of Court Cases Require Expert Witnesses?

In many court cases, an expert witness is necessary. Without an expert who can provide information on the hows and whys something went wrong or what the generally accepted standard of care is in their specific realm of expertise, juries often don’t have the information they need to make an informed decision.

According to ISSUES in Science and Technology, an expert witness who claims to have specialized knowledge is only permitted to testify when that specialized knowledge can really be of assistance.

Wrongful Termination 

Economic expert witnesses can provide testimony in various types of cases, such as wrongful termination. In litigation, plaintiffs make claims for economic compensatory damages measured by economic damage experts after comparing earnings and other factors as the result of an adverse incident. They can help in examining claims and calculating damages as well as providing expert witness services in court.

Vehicle Accidents

Expert witnesses can also provide important information about cases involving motor vehicle cases that may include everything from explaining the severity of injuries to the cause of the accident and potential future treatment costs. They can be invaluable in personal injury cases, providing a great deal of leverage during compensation negotiations.

Medical Malpractice

Once an attorney has established medical negligence, they must demonstrate that the doctor’s or other healthcare provider’s negligence harmed the patient. Even if the physician deviated from the standard of care, their actions might not be the primary reason for the patient’s medical complications or suffering. An expert witness can help establish that the negligence of the professional involved did cause a negative outcome. To prove fault, the witness (or witnesses) will first review all aspects of the case with the legal team, such as statements from the defendant and plaintiff, along with other involved parties like doctors, nurses, and family members, along with the medical records. They look for any mistakes to determine which errors directly led to the harm of the patient.

Product Liability Cases 

Companies that manufacture products have a responsibility to consumers to ensure they don’t pose unreasonable dangers. If they fail to thoroughly test a product or provide the appropriate safety warnings, people can be injured or even killed. Those injured by defective or dangerous products can file a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer to seek compensation for their injuries and related losses. Actually obtaining that compensation can be difficult, however. Product liability cases tend to be some of the most challenging cases for trial attorneys. Obtaining proof requires extensive time and expense. Retaining an expert witness early in the preparation period can suggest the direction reconstructions and investigations take, contribute research, point out information sources, and even help lawyers define their theory of liability or devise an alternative one.

Expert witnesses can be called in to help prove the product in question was unreasonably dangerous or defective and that it injured the plaintiff. It also must be shown that the dangerous nature or defectiveness of the product was the direct cause of the plaintiff’s injuries.

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