Expert Witnesses

Expert Witnesses - Burden of Proof/Expert Witness Burden of...

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Unformatted text preview: Burden of Proof/Expert Witness Burden of Proof/Expert Witness l in civil cases (tort or contract actions), case must be proven on a "balance of probabilities" l in some criminal proceedings, case must be proven "beyond a reasonable doubt" (a more demanding criterion) l Judges often must decide which witness is more credible. EXPERT WITNESSES Engineers often serve as Expert Witnesses l "Experts" are allowed to express opinions (in addition to providing facts). l Non-expert witnesses are limited to presenting "facts" or direct observations. l . . . be prepared! . . . allow for "no surprises"! . . . understand the entire picture! . . . anticipate all the "tough" questions! Be personally prepared ... l To spend time in consultation with a good/ meticulous lawyer Often the most rewarding part of such jobs Often includes brainstorming alternatives l component failure cause-effect alternatives l alternative human actions which could have resulted in the problematic outcome For extravagant praise l For severe criticism l "Volunteered" or "Command" Performance? l Accompanying or assisting a client in court Engineer is normally expected to co-operate Usually a voluntary involvement but normally falling under the existing fee arrangements with the client l compensation can be negotiated l if not previously anticipated within the current agreement Should be done before the involvement, i.e, to allow for: preparation (if any) court appearance commitments "Volunteered" or "Command" Performance (cont'd)? l Being called upon To appear as a witness l Involves preparation time Being subpoenaed as an involuntary witness l entitlement to legal witness fees and l certain travel and living expenses very "nominal" amount only! Expert Witness Consulting l Can be very interesting l Can be lucrative l Can be demanding in terms of time for good preparation NOT for coaching as a witness l Reviewing alternative scenarios is valid l Rehearsing answers to anticipated questions is not appropriate. ...
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This note was uploaded on 09/19/2009 for the course ME 416 taught by Professor Kauzmania during the Spring '09 term at Windsor.

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Expert Witnesses - Burden of Proof/Expert Witness Burden of...

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