Expert testimony is crucial in a court of law in helping judges in concluding complex cases.
Before going further, you would like to know the expert testimony definition. You want to know what is an expert testimony? An expert testimony refers to a professional and objective opinion provided by an expert witness in court.
Usually, the expert witness is trained and has experience in the specific field; hence his knowledge in the particular discipline is beyond layman’s understanding. He can study, interpret and present complex information in a particular study area in an easy-to-understand manner.
It isn’t easy to discuss the importance of having expert testimony without mentioning the fundamental roles and responsibilities of the expert witness.
The following are the essential roles of an expert witness.
Provides unbiased expert opinion in court. Mainly, expert witnesses provide independent and impartial opinions relevant to the specific case. An expert witness must never show partiality to either of the parties in a case.
Uses reliable investigation techniques to provide undesirable findings. An expert witness must apply professionally acceptable practices to investigate and analyze a case before preparing and presenting the results.
Also, throughout the process, the expert witness must abide by the regulations that govern expert witnesses.
Provides a comprehensive report. The expert witness’s statement must cover all crucial matters about the case. The expert witness must ensure his statement does not have gaps. The information must be sufficiently helpful to the judges in making their ruling going forward.
The expert witness must be available and ready to make a presentation in court. During the presentation, the expert witness must be prepared to answer any questions raised and provide clarifications where necessary.
The following are the benefits of expert testimony.
The jury goes through a series of steps to reach a verdict, influenced by many factors. One of those factors is the effect that persuasive speech has on them. Notably, a compelling speech can have different impacts on judges based on their characteristics and background.
For example, people with higher levels of intelligence are more likely to be persuaded than people with lower overall cognitive skills and abilities.
Judges are not scientists or experts in the field. They do not have the same understanding as an expert witness.
Expert witnesses provide the judges with visual aids such as diagrams, illustrations, and graphical charts. The graphics can be helpful because they are more engaging than words by providing judges with an intuitive understanding of concepts where words or abstract symbols fail.
3. Offer Alternative Explanations for Evidence or Facts that Might Be Inconsistent With Accused’s Claims
There are many reasons that someone might be convicted with evidence that is not enough. If the evidence is inconsistent, it could be due to mistakes or intentional manipulation of the facts. If there are gaps in the evidence, then there need to be alternative explanations.
If someone is convicted with evidence that does not make sense, they can claim that they did not have a fair trial and demand a new problem with the help of an expert witness. Also, they can present an alternative explanation for the evidence as well as inconsistencies in their favor.
In the court of law, judges are faced with cases where the presented evidence and facts are not sufficient to make a final ruling.
The opinion of an expert witness comes in handy in providing supporting statements about the presented evidence.
Usually, the evidence is based on facts about the case, but it can be challenged since it does not have any professional backing. The expert comes in to support every presented evidence by giving his professional point of view.
One of the main requirements of an expert witness is the commitment to be impartial. An expert witness must be trustworthy even when his report and findings do not favor his client.
The expert witness must present his report without alterations in favor of either party.
Based on the above discussion, expert testimony is crucial in the conclusion of complex court cases that are difficult to make a final ruling without the input of an expert in the specific field.
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