The sequestration of expert witnesses in Virginia has different guidelines for civil and criminal cases. In the criminal context, § 19.2-265.1 governs. VA. CODE ANN. § 19.2-265.1 (West 2017). This rule requires that the court exclude a witness from the courtroom as to not hear testimony of other witnesses if requested by a party or through the court’s own order. Id. This rule excludes defendants and victims that are to be called as witnesses. Id. Even though there is no explicit exception for expert witnesses, the trial court is given discretion to make exceptions to the rule. Huddleston v. Com., 61 S.E.2d 276 (Va. 1950).
In the civil context, Virginia’s Rules of Civil Procedure § 8.01-375 governs. VA. CODE ANN. § 8.01-375 (West 2017). This rule requires the trial court to exclude witnesses when requested by a party or on its own motion. Id. The rule accounts for expert witnesses and allows, on behalf of the party’s request, “one expert for each party to remain in the courtroom.” Id. The trial court is given discretion to determine if the expert should be excluded or not. Elizabeth Rive Tunnel Dist. v. Beecher, 117 S.E.2d 685 (Va. 1961).

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