You need ample evidence to prove a personal injury claim and get the compensation you deserve. Most victims think of proof as physical evidence from a car crash or video footage of an illegal act. But factual evidence can also play a significant role in your claim. One of the most influential forms of factual evidence is the testimony of an expert witness.
3 Frequently Asked Questions About Expert Witnesses
- Who can be an expert witness? Anyone with specialized knowledge pertinent to the facts of you case.
- Who pays for hiring an expert witness? Your attorney will hire any necessary experts and deduct the costs from your recovery amount.
- Do I need an expert witness for my case? Although not required by law, expert witnesses might be necessary to prove your claim.
Keep reading to learn more about the role of expert witnesses and how they can be crucial to a successful personal injury claim.
What Are Expert Witnesses?
Unlike a witness who saw a car crash or other injuring event, an expert witness typically has no connection to the incident or victim. Expert witnesses use their specialized knowledge to help attorneys and juries understand the nuances and technical facts of a case.
Under Texas law, a qualified expert witness is anyone with “scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge” that will help a judge or jury understand the evidence and facts in a case.
An attorney may consult with several expert witnesses in different fields, such as a medical professional to describe the victim’s injuries and a manufacturing expert to explain how a product was defective and could cause those injuries.
“Expert witnesses use their specialized knowledge to help attorneys and juries understand the nuances and technical facts of a case.“
Why Are Expert Witnesses Important in a Personal Injury Case?
When you and the defendant dispute the cause of an injury, it’s up to both sides to provide evidence and support for their opposing claims. Expert witnesses do not have a stake in the outcome of a case and therefore offer an unbiased opinion. Due to their expertise and unbiased nature, expert witnesses can be among the most valuable evidence for your case.
Do I Need an Expert Witness for My Personal Injury Claim?
The courts rarely require the use of expert witnesses, so you do not necessarily need to hire one for your personal injury claim. Hiring experts without reason will cost you extra money without providing any benefits. However, an expert witness could also mean the difference between whether you recover compensation for your injuries or how much you receive.
This balance is why it’s crucial to work with an experienced personal injury attorney. Your attorney will be able to determine whether consulting an expert is beneficial for your specific case. Like attorney fees and other case-related expenses, the cost of consulting with an expert attorney comes out of your total recovery amount, not out of your pocket.
Attorneys generally consult with expert witnesses on complex cases, such as those involving:
- Crashes with more than two vehicles
- Commercial vehicle crashes
- Pre-existing medical conditions
- Medical malpractice
Crosley Law Gets $4.9 Million Settlement for Trucking Accident Victim With TBIRead More
4 Expert Witnesses Attorneys Frequently Consult
An expert witness can be any specialist whose knowledge base provides useful information for a specific case. The experts your attorney will consult with will depend on the type of case — whether a car crash, medical malpractice, premise liability, or product liability claim.
While this list could include a nearly endless number of specialists and professionals, there are a few experts with whom attorneys commonly consult for personal injury claims.
1) Medical Professionals
A medical expert witness could be someone who examined the victim personally or an expert in the condition the victim is suffering from. Medical professionals can attest to the extent of the injury sustained by the victim and how this injury could affect their livelihood.
In medical malpractice cases, medical professionals can also testify to the standard of care that the negligent doctor should have taken when treating the victim’s specific condition. Failure to treat a patient according to the generally accepted standard of care is concrete proof of negligence.
Don’t Ignore Your Mental Health After a Car AccidentRead More
2) Mental Health Specialists
Severe physical injuries often leave an emotional impact on the victim. Mental health specialists can explain how psychological conditions like anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, and depression can drastically affect the victim’s ability to work, enjoy life, or even function independently.
The testimonies of mental health specialists can help victims receive compensation for non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and loss of companionship.
3) Life Care Planners
Life care planners take the testimonies of medical and mental health professionals even further. The sole role of life care planners is to determine the physical and financial deficits the injury will cause the victim throughout their recovery — or for the rest of their life. These could include:
- Earning capacity
- Life expectancy
- Physical therapy costs
- Level of disability
- Counseling costs
4) Accident Reconstructions
Accident reconstructionists often have backgrounds in engineering or physics and use their knowledge to create drawings, physical replicas, or digital models of car crashes or other incidents based on factual evidence and witness testimonies. Attorneys typically consult reconstructionists when there is some doubt as to the specific events or order of events in a personal injury incident.
Crosley Law Works With Experts Nationwide to Get the Compensation Our Clients Deserve
Request Your Free Consultation
Crosley Law has an extensive national network of experts that we frequently consult with and ask to testify in personal injury cases. Our attorneys have experience determining the necessity of hiring these experts, as well as which experts to hire for each case.
If you or a loved one has been injured by someone else’s negligence, contact our attorneys today for a free consultation to discuss your legal rights and options. Call us at 210-LAW-3000 | 210-529-3000 or complete this brief contact form to get started toward your financial recovery.
Tex. R. Evid. 702 (2018). Retrieved from https://www.txcourts.gov/media/1442383/texas-rules-of-evidence-updated-with-amendments-effective-112018.pdf
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.
Related ArticlesView All Blog Articles
What Should You Do After a FedEx Truck Crash in Texas?Dec 09, 2022
With more than 100,000 vehicles, nearly 125,000 drivers, and an annual revenue estimated at around $84 billion, FedEx is easily one of the largest trucking companies in the United States. With numbers like these, it’s no surprise that FedEx freight trucks are involved in injury-causing truck crashes nearly every day on American roads. In fact, […]
Out-of-State Car Accident Jurisdiction: A Visitor’s Guide to Texas Injury LawNov 03, 2022
Texas isn’t just the second most populous state in the U.S. It’s also one of our nation’s biggest destinations for out-of-state travelers. According to Travel Texas, the state hosts more than 70 million visitors per year. While we certainly wish that everyone who visits our state enjoys a stress-free trip, the reality is that more […]
What Happens if You Get in an Accident With a Delivery Truck Driver?Nov 01, 2022
If your neighborhood is anything like ours, chances are you see a steady stream of delivery trucks, vans, and other vehicles pass by your house or apartment on a daily basis. The trend really took off at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it certainly shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon. Nowadays, […]
How to Prepare for a Deposition in a Texas Personal Injury CaseOct 24, 2022
If you’ve suffered a personal injury that wasn’t your fault and you need to file a civil lawsuit to get the compensation you deserve, sooner or later you will likely have to provide your personal testimony in a deposition. Although depositions are not given before a judge, the things that you say will be considered […]
Can You Get a Concussion Without Hitting Your Head?Sep 21, 2022
Concussions, also known as mild traumatic brain injuries, are far more common than most people realize. Most estimates figure at least 3 million new cases occur in the United States each year, with falls, sports accidents, and car crashes commonly responsible. But because so many people with mild traumatic brain injury delay or skip medical […]
U-Turn Laws in Texas: Who’s at Fault After a Crash?Aug 24, 2022
There’s a lot of confusion about Texas’ U-turn laws. While U-turns are generally legal in Texas and a convenient way to quickly change direction, they’re also known for leading to numerous car accidents. If you’ve been involved in a U-turn accident, it might not be immediately clear who is at fault. First, although the driver […]
11 Things You Need to Know About a Bicycle Accident Insurance Claim in San AntonioJul 23, 2022
Cycling is a great way to get some fresh air, exercise, and save on gas money. So it’s no surprise that bike commuting is increasing in popularity. But even with dedicated bike lanes and increased awareness of cyclists, motor vehicle accidents are still a serious concern. While San Antonio has made great strides in becoming […]
5 Reasons You Should Always Talk to a Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer After a CrashJul 21, 2022
After a traffic accident, you have a lot to think about and plenty of decisions to make. One of them is whether you’ll work with a commercial vehicle accident lawyer to demand compensation for your losses. You should always talk to an attorney if you’ve been hurt in a car or truck accident. No matter […]
What Causes Texas Oil Truck Accidents (and What to Do If You’re Injured)Jul 13, 2022
In Texas, the oil and gas industry is big business. More than 400,000 Texans are directly employed within the industry, helping to produce, transport, and refine more than 1.5 billion barrels of crude oil per year. The sheer amount of oil tankers we have on the ground virtually guarantees that at least a few serious […]
Considering a New Braunfels Car Accident Lawyer? Here’s What You Need to KnowJul 07, 2022
New Braunfels, TX has come a long way in just a few decades. Comal County remains one of the fastest growing in the country, and new developments continue to be built throughout the region. One negative consequence of all this growth? An increase in car accidents. There were 2,715 recorded crashes in the county in […]
Do you or a family member
need legal advice?
Crosley Law Firm, PC is a professional corporation of trial lawyers focused on representing individuals and families who have suffered serious personal injuries or wrongful death. If you’ve been injured, fill out the form for a free consultation, or call 210-LAW-3000.