• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The testimony of expert witnesses to inform courtroom decisions is critical if intelligent and just verdicts are to be reached. Few judges, jurors or lay witnesses possess the necessary knowledge to adequately understand the complexities of human behaviour as they relate to acts of interpersonal violence. While lay witnesses can testify to actual incidents or observations, it is the expert witness who can provide forensic significance to such evidence. This volume clearly defines the need for and role of expert witnesses in litigation. The author demystifies the process, and provides practical guidance on preparing and presenting expert testimony. In so doing, he will assist courts to more accurately assess and weigh eviden

Presenting Expert Testimony in Court
Presenting expert testimony in court

Expert opinion… is only an ordinary guess in evening clothes.

Justice Curtis Bok, Earl M. Kerstetter, Inc., v. Commonwealth, 1961

Performing professional work, being aware of the state of the art and the existing literature, and engaging in a comprehensive preparation of testimony are all mandatory for the most effective presentation of expert testimony in court. However, these things alone are not enough. All of the preparatory work of attorney and expert witness can be wasted if the information gathered and the opinions reached are not explained to the jury in a logical and understandable manner.

When important information is hidden in technical jargon, it is unusable. When evidence is not presented logically, it is of limited benefit. When ...

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