Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Scripting an Expert Witness?

Here's a cautionary tale for Expert Witnesses from IMS Expert Services: "How do you fit a square expert witness into a round case? You don't, of course, but many lawyers make the mistake of trying. Rather than tailor their theory of the case to fit the expert's opinion, they try to shape the expert's opinion to fit their theory.

It is a mismatch that can weaken a case and undermine an expert, says veteran trial lawyer Albert L. Jacobs Jr., National Chair – Intellectual Property with Greenberg Traurig in New York.

"I want to build the case based on the expert's view of the issues," explains Jacobs, a patent lawyer for more than 30 years. "I have my own ideas about the case, but I'm not hiring an expert to read from a script."

Far too often, Jacobs says, it is obvious to him that the opposing party has hired its expert for the specific purpose of propounding a point of view. But when an expert is testifying from a script, it is much easier for the other side to trip him up.

For this reason, Jacobs says, he advocates bringing the expert on board at the earliest possible opportunity.

"If I'm the plaintiff, I want the expert on board before we file suit. I want to work together with the expert and formulate the strongest possible position."

The same holds true when he represents the defendant. "I want the expert on board as quickly as I can. I want to discuss with the expert his or her views on infringement or noninfringement and validity or invalidity."

Click here to read the whole article. Expert services for imaging, video, audio, and cell phone analysis can be found here.


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