A recent High Court judgment highlights the importance of an Expert Witness demonstrating to the court that he/she is an expert witness. If the Expert Witness does not demonstrate his/her expertise, then the evidence will not be considered. I set out below a link to the case: Havbell DAC v/s Hillard
As the judgment states: Broadly speaking, there are essentially two types of witnesses whose evidence can be tendered to the Court. The first are witnesses as to fact, who can give evidence as to what they saw and heard and did at a particular time. The second category is expert evidence, where the expert due to his or her knowledge, qualifications and experience in the relevant area, is permitted to give opinion evidence on the issue before the Court.Experts are the only people permitted to give opinion evidence before a Court. While it is certainly true that there is no specific threshold which has to be met before a person can be classed as being an expert, there must be some evidence before the Court that the person proffered as an expert, does in fact have some expertise and experience in the relevant area upon which he or she proposes to give an opinion.
The Rules of the Superior Courts are very specific as to how Expert Witness must present their evidence. I set out below the relevant link to the Rules:
Our practical experience of providing numerous Expert Witness Reports over the years, acting for both Plaintiffs and Defendants, is that a well crafted, logical Expert Witness Report can be very persuasive in helping to settle cases and avoid substantial legal costs.
We have practical experience of providing Expert Witness reports in the following types of cases:
If you have family, friends, colleagues or clients who require Expert Witness evidence on financial, commercial or corporate governance matters please ask them to contact myself, Tom Murray or Andrew Hendrick.
PS: Sometimes the links to the websites above do not work on mobile devices = better to access from a PC.
PPS: The caption to the cartoon is: ” “We may be in trouble here. The Prosecution’s Expert Witness can usually tell if a Defendant’s been good or bad” (The caption is viewable from PCs but not from mobile devices.)