Expert witnesses assist retaining counsel in a variety of ways in addition to testifying.
Beth Bochnak, speaking at the National Expert Witness Conference explained 4 main ways expert witnesses can assist counsel:
The Expert Witness Is a Tool
Testimony should support the position counsel presents
If unable to support, withdraw
Suggest someone else
Be coldly honest in opinion
Listen to Counsel
Recognize budget limitations
Recognize time constraints
Understand attorney’s needs
What you can/cannot say
Where are you vulnerable to attack
Build attorney teaching time into fee
Provide attorney with reading list
Teach code words, concepts
Teach opposing opinions of other experts
Robin Franks, PG, CHMM will be speaking at this year’s conference on May 3-4, 2014 in Orlando, FL:
Making the Complex Understandable: What Works for Expert Witnesses
Robin Franks PG, CHMM
Ms. Franks will discuss how to translate and explain complex scientific concepts, principles, and results in a fashion that can be readily understood by a judge, fact finder, and jury. She will demonstrate how an effective technical expert witness can make juries and judges feel comfortable with the understanding of complex evidentiary material. Ms. Franks will demonstrate, by use of examples, how all experts can work with retaining counsel to offer coherent, understandable, expert testimony even in the most complex and difficult cases.
Robin Franks PG, CHMM is President and founder of TGE Resources, Inc. and an experienced expert witness and consultant. She is a professional geoscientist, geologist, biologist and Certified Hazardous Materials Manager.. Ms. Franks’ specialties include real property assessment, characterization, clean-up, and case “closure” in the commercial, industrial, oil and gas, and healthcare industries. Her experience encompasses over 25 years of industrial compliance auditing, clean-up of up and down-stream affected oil & gas property, bulk and fuel storage tank remediation, urban core “Brownfield” redevelopment projects, asbestos consulting, lead-based paint management, and industrial hygiene/indoor environmental quality consulting including mold/fungus and bioaerosol assessment, testing, and remediation consulting. Ms. Franks offers expertise in litigation support and client representation within a wide array of environmental matters. She has served as the firm’s senior technical Principal in more than 35 “merger/acquisition” projects encompassing over 2000 sites nationwide; and thousands of real property investigations, many of which have involved complex clean-up strategies as well as comprehensive “risk-based” case management in negotiated coordination with various regulatory agencies within Texas and throughout the United States.