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How to Quickly and Effectively Select the Right Expert Witness

Hiring the right expert witness for the case is imperative when certain aspects must be explained in a way that the lawyer is unable to do so for the judge or jury.

This requires knowledge of how much the individual costs for the case, how to employ the professional and when the best time to contact him or her is. When there are pieces of evidence, processes or aspects of the issue that are confusing or do not connect properly, an expert witness may be necessary. If the court room procedures necessitate an explanation of a difficult issue, these persons are perfect to breakdown the information.

There are various signs available that point the lawyer in the direction that an expert witness is needed such as a high profile case with computer data, white collar crimes that include extensive numbers and similar concerns. However, it is important to contact the right person for the job and ensure the case is able to progress with the knowledge and experience of the hired expert. Research into these individual is important,
but the right relationship and connection between the lawyer and professional is also imperative. It may be beneficial to discover what not to look for while seeking these expert witnesses.

What to Look For

While it is important to look for the qualities that are best for the case, it is also essential to know what to look for that should be avoided. When the expert is mostly only working as an expert witness, this may be someone to keep away from, as he or she is not working in the field relevant to the work he or she is giving testimony for in the court room. This means that experienced in the subject matter could be from years ago and not up to date. If the professional seeks a retainer that appears to be greater than others with a similar background, he or she may be the wrong individual to hire.

Because communication is so important, it is imperative that an expert is easily reachable. If this is not the case, the professional should not be hired. Demeanor and charm are also essential in a case so that the judge or jury is able to understand the evidence and believe what the expert witness is explaining. Equally important is experience in testifying in the court room. If this is lacking, the professional may be a poor fit. Any misconduct such as when disciplinary action or challenges are successful should be avoided. These individuals are not the best to seek for expert witnesses. This may also include those that advertise their services overtly.

Quickly Selecting the Expert

When looking for the items that the individual should avoid, it is easier to see what qualities the lawyer will want in an expert witness. This means keeping away from professionals that charge an hourly rate, that charge up front in specific or excessive retainers and experts that expound on their expert knowledge. Qualities to look for become more obvious when avoiding those that would make a bad fit for the case. Selecting the professional quickly may be accomplished when researching a subject either online or through the subject matter in the local area where the person would be needed in the court room.

There are standard rates for a deposition and hourly testimony in a court room for various experts throughout the country. The average has been estimated through a national poll with 5000 professionals. The usual rate is just over $450 for each. This eliminates several persons immediately. Anyone that does not have the right education or knowledge of the subject may be removed from the list. This also includes those with little or no court room experience. Another strike may be made for those with outlandish theories. This means a Daubert challenge may remove them as a credible expert.

Effective Selection of an Expert Witness

Research is the primary importance in finding the right fit for an expert witness in the case. He or she must have experience in the field, education beyond a certain level and a presence that may be felt in the court room. This means an interview will weed out any awkward individuals that cannot adequately present findings to a judge or jury. Communication is key, and this may provide the necessary information that the professional is the right match. After that, it is just a matter of progressing forward.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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