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Expert Witnesses General Information Legal Definitions

Can Anyone Be An Expert Witness?

Who can be an expert witness? In complicated or technical medical cases, the testimonies of experienced and qualified expert witnesses are necessary. Medical expert witnesses are qualified by their expertise, experience, knowledge, and skills to give an impartial opinion or statement before the court in a specific medical case.

Before we tell you about expert witness qualifications, it is crucial to know about an expert witness’s legal definition. Likewise, in today’s article, we will discuss the qualifications and give you an example of a medical expert witness. Read on!

What Is A Expert Witness Legal Definition?

According to the Federal Rules of Evidence, an expert witness is a qualified person with education, knowledge, skills, experience, and training. Federal Rule 702 states that an expert witness testifies before the court in the form of an opinion or statement, allowing the legal authorities to understand the scientific and technical data easily.

Who can be an expert witness?

A person who wants to qualify as an expert witness, a particular medical expert witness, should have a valid, current, and unrestricted license to practice a specific medical area. An expert witness is board-certified in a specific medical or health specialty and holds expert witness qualifications.

Bear in mind that a medical expert witness should actively practice in his clinical area of specialty. An expert should have relevant health industry experience and clinical knowledge subjected to court proceedings.

According to Federal Rule 702, a person needs to have experience, knowledge, education, training, and skills, allowing a court to understand the facts or evidence presented in a medical case. Besides these requirements, a medical expert witness or company that offers legal services has:

  • Skills to meet and beat deadlines
  • Follow a step-by-step approach
  • Competitive spirit and commitment to excellence
  • No criminal convictions and license revocations
  • No controversial past writings and poor research skills
  • A flexible schedule for depositions and trial appearances
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Excellent research, investigative, and organizational skills

Medical Expert Witness Ethical Guidelines

Who can be an expert witness? Besides the requirements given above, a medical expert witness must also follow the ethical guidelines described by the Federal Rules of Evidence. If a person is not familiar with professional ethics, the court will not consider his expert testimony admissible. Therefore, it is crucial for an expert witness to know, understand, and implement ethical practices in medico-legal cases.

A medical expert witness’s opinions, facts, and information should be impartial, truthful, and evidence-based. Here at Legal Medical Consulting, our expert witnesses do not provide biased testimonies that favor the plaintiff or defendant. Besides, the testimony prepared by our expert witnesses reflects the proven scientific evidence and goes in line with the standard of care principles.

Moreover, the medical expert witness must have a thorough knowledge of medical malpractice and negligence cases. The witness must not connect or add irrelevant information in the testimony.

Medical expert witnesses make substantial efforts to investigate and evaluate whether a doctor or surgeon has breached the standard of care owed to the plaintiff. A medical expert witness fee should relate to the efforts made and time spent on the medical-legal case and testimony preparation.

What Is An Example Of An Expert Witness?

There are many types of expert witnesses. These are medical experts, vocational experts, parenting experts, child-custody experts, financial experts, security experts, and corporate experts. However, in this post, we will give you an example of a medical expert witness. Continue reading!

For instance, facility administrators or managers handle hospitals, hospices, outpatient clinics, and drug-abuse treatment centers. These professionals oversee and supervise business operations to ensure the hospital or clinic remains productive and increases their ROIs. Administrators ensure hospitals operate effectively and provide proper medical care to patients. Here is an example of an administrative medical-legal case.

Example: Administrative Errors

Michael Bevan, a patient, living in a long-term care facility, has autism. The facility staff or healthcare team identified that the patient is a risk to his own wellbeing. Although the facility staff was aware of Mr. Bevan’s condition, they failed to take necessary measurements and ignored implementing precautionary protocols to prevent the patient from harming himself.

As a result, the patient flung himself down the stairs and got several severe injuries, including a fatal wound on his head. The patient’s family hired a seasoned hospital administrator with proper knowledge, skills, and experience to evaluate whether the facility staff breached the standard of care owed to Mr. Bevan. The court found that the facility ignored the patient, leading to severe injuries. Who can be an expert witness? Contact Legal Medical Consulting, Dallas, TX, for more details.

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