Techniques Top Attorneys Use When Questioning an Expert

attorney going up a level in her deposition questioningWhen taking an expert’s deposition, you start with questions to learn everything that he or she thinks about the case and has done or plans to do in connection with it. Once that’s done, consider taking your questioning up a level with these three techniques. Continue reading

Get a Crash Course from Your Expert

Learn fast from your expert about the area of expertiseSome lawyers decide at the beginning of a case that they’ll never be able to understand what the expert is talking about, and they make no effort to do so. Bad plan! Regardless of the expert’s skill, it’s the lawyer’s responsibility to make sure that his or her expertise is presented to the trier of fact in an admissible and persuasive way. To do that, the lawyer needs to understand the expert’s testimony and field of expertise. Here are four ways to educate yourself fast. Continue reading

Should You Use Voir Dire With Opponent’s Expert?

lawyer asking expert witness questions about qualificationsAfter opposing counsel attempts to qualify an expert witness, you can ask the court to let you conduct voir dire on the expert. But just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Continue reading

FAQs about Redirect Examination

After the other side has had a chance to cross-examine your witness, you get another bite at the apple—redirect examination. Knowing when and how to do redirect is key. Continue reading

5 Areas for Questioning an Expert at Deposition

Regardless of an expert’s particular specialty, there are five areas that apply to the questioning of most expert witnesses at deposition. Continue reading

Do You Need an Expert Witness, and If So, What Type?

Retaining an expert witness is expensive and may not be necessary in every case. Don’t try to keep up with the Jones & Jones firm: Just because the other side has an expert or because experts have traditionally been used in similar cases doesn’t mean you need one. And if you decide you do need an expert, make sure it’s the best type for your case. Continue reading

Get Your Expert Involved with the Evidence

Despite the political rhetoric, public confidence in scientists has “remained stable for decades.” You can bring this confidence into the courtroom through expert testimony based on the scientific method, i.e., physical observation and testing, not just untested hypotheses. Experts should be “hands on” when it comes to collecting and investigating physical evidence. Continue reading

Warn Your Expert Against Writing

Although in the “real world” scientists changing their minds may be the badge of intellectual honesty, in litigation the expert who backs away from a position or changes an opinion is supplying the opposition with a source of impeachment. Any time the expert makes a written record of his or her thoughts or opinions, the opposition gets a “paper trail” of potential impeachment material. To avoid this, tell your expert to keep writing to a minimum. Continue reading

New Year, New Laws for Civil Litigators

thinkstockphotos-498422290Were you able to keep track of the new legislative changes that will affect California civil litigators? Don’t worry, we did and here’s an overview of some of the key statutory changes you need to know about. Continue reading

4 Tips to Get the Jury Excited About Your Expert

thinkstockphotos-537972277Don’t treat the qualification of your expert as a mere formality. The expert’s qualifications should convince jurors that they’re fortunate to have someone as qualified as the expert to assist them in deciding the case and that your expert is better qualified than the opposing one. Continue reading