What To Look For in an Expert Witness

A high-quality expert witness can be the difference between legal success and failure. Although many individuals can be considered experts in their field, not all experts make  great expert witnesses. If you face a civil or criminal court case, these are personal and professional qualities you should look for in a high-quality witness.

Scientific and Field-Specific Knowledge

Review your witnesses’ knowledge and experience. Great expert witnesses have specialized knowledge in both their fields and in scientific methods of analysis. These individuals will base their conclusions on their own experience as well as research done by others in their fields. For example, an expert witness banking will have extensive knowledge about banking laws and current and past research. However, this professional will also understand statistics and scientific methods of data collection and analysis.

Consistent Methodologies and Conclusions

Look over the expert witnesses’ previous cases to ensure that their conclusions and methodology are consistent. You see, your witnesses will have to analyze your evidence and data before writing a report on their findings. Then, they will have to submit to a deposition during which they will be cross-examined by your opposition. Finally, expert witnesses must present their case and back up their methodology in court. Your opposing counsel’s job is to discredit your witnesses. Therefore, if they have testified or written anything in the past that opposes their current conclusion on your case, they can damage more than help your case.

Ability To Communicate Effectively

Not only do your witnesses have to prepare reports that are easily understood, but they also have to testify. Therefore, they need to be comfortable writing about and speaking to others using technical language and reducing complex concepts down to ideas that can be easily understood by anyone. They cannot hesitate but must speak with confidence and clarity. They need to understand the questions they are asked and formulate quick responses. They should be able to summarize complicated processes using clear, concise language.

Set yourself up with the best team and case by working with exceptional expert witnesses.