What Is an Expert Witness? - Ohio Personal Injury Attorney

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Hi, this is Attorney Chuck Boyk. I've been a personal injury attorney in Northwest Ohio for the last 28 years

and today I wanted to answer some questions that I get on a regular basis

from clients.

First question is what is an expert witness? and

how do I go about getting an expert witness? In a lawsuit

the plaintiff's attorney has to prove the case.

In order to prove the case you're going to need expert witness. That's somebody who

has expertise in a specific area

in order to prove your case. So for example, if an individual out of an auto

accident has a torn rotator cuff

how do we prove that the torn rotator cuff is linked to the accident?

Normally what we would do is try to find a board certified

orthopedic surgeon who's willing to testify

whose good at testifying and that individual will look at the prior records,

look at history of the accident, look at the

surgical records and say to a

reasonable degree of medical certainty that the proximate cause of the

rotator cuff surgery was the specific auto accident.

Another example would be if

an individual no longer can work as a result of the accident,

we're going to try to prove future lost wages.

So typically what we would do in a situation like that is we would hire

somebody called a

vocationalist. The vocationalist would indicate

based on the functional capacity exam

of the injured person based on the medical records that there is only certain

jobs that would be available for that individual

and they would basically indicate what the decrease

in future earnings would be for that individual.

Then we would take that information and the medical records

and send it to an economist who would put down the present value

what the future economic loss is to the individual.

Another example might be an auto accident were there is a dispute

on how the auto accident happened.

What we often use is somebody called an accident reconstructionist.

The accident reconstructionist is a professional

expert witness that will put the accident together and

testify to a reasonable degree of engineering certainty

what the cause of the accident was and how the accident happened.

So in order to prove your case under Ohio law

it's important to have a good personal injury attorney

who knows what type of expert you need,

who are the best experts and how to prepare

those experts to help maximize the value

to your case.