Expert Witness Legal Definition

What is an Expert Witness?” 

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Expert Witness Legal Definition

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Expert Witness legal definition: An expert witness is someone who is permitted to testify in court because they have special education, training, knowledge, or proficiency in a field relevant to the case. Expert witnesses are common in both civil and criminal cases.

The purpose of expert witnesses vary. Basically, there are two types of expert witnesses:

  • Consulting witnesses, who help clarify and explain key elements of a complex case but who generally do not testify in court
  • Testifying experts, who appear in court, are subject to discovery and cross-examination

Types of expert witnesses include:

  • Medical experts
  • Manufacturing experts
  • Engineering expert

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Expert Witnesses and Car Accident Cases

Expert witnesses are often somewhat common in car accident injury cases. Expert witnesses can help bolster and add credibility to a claim. Car accident injury victims may hire an expert witness to provide information related to:

  • Dangerous road conditions and intersections
  • Accident reconstruction
  • Defective car parts
  • How alcohol, illegal drugs, or prescription medications can affect driving ability
  • And more

While effective, expert witnesses are expensive. It’s best to enlist the help of an experienced personal injury attorney to see if hiring an expert witness will help in your car accident injury case.


Expert Witnesses and Medical Malpractice Cases

Because of the complex nature of medical malpractice claims, expert witnesses are nearly always necessary. In fact, without it a judge may dismiss a claim altogether. 

In medical malpractice cases expert witnesses help answer two crucial questions:

  1. Did the doctor or health provider accused of misconduct follow the standard of care for medical professionals in the same field? In other words: Did the doctor at the center of the suit do the same thing any other competent health care professional would under the same circumstances?
  2. Did the doctor or medical provider’s failure to follow that standard of care lead to the patient’s injury?

If you or someone you care about was injured as a result of medical malpractice, call a skilled attorney to see how an expert witness could help prove your case.


Expert Witnesses and Personal Injury Cases

Expert witnesses can help provide needed information, perspective, and credibility in personal injury cases stemming from:

  • Car accidents
  • Medical mistakes
  • Slip and falls
  • Defective products
  • Work accidents

These experts provide an objective, professional opinion that can help prove your claim and sway a judge and jury to rule in your favor. 

Identifying the best types of expert witness in your personal injury case – and obtaining their testimony – is time consuming and expensive. If you are thinking about filing a personal injury action that may necessitate expert witness testimony, it’s best accomplished with the help of an experienced law firm.


Expert Witnesses and Workers’ Compensation Cases

Expert witnesses are used in workers’ compensation cases to provide information related to:

  • The severity of a worker’s injury
  • The level of disability caused by a workplace injury
  • The nature and cause of an injury
  • Future medical needs
  • Accident reconstruction
  • Employee protections and rights




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“If someone has a serious case, they will get a great effort and a great outcome working with us,” award-winning attorney Victor Pribanic of Pribanic & Pribanic told Best Lawyers Magazine.

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