An expert witness may provide testimony to help increase the credibility of a personal injury case. The type of expert used depends on the nature of the case and the facts that claimants must prove. The expert is generally qualified as an expert because of his or her education, skill, experience or training.
Expert Witnesses That May Testify in a Personal Injury Case
When someone has sustained physical harm because of someone else’s negligence, compensation may be available to address damages. Generally there are two areas in a personal injury case where an expert witness could be helpful. One is to prove the act of negligence and the other is to establish the extent and severity of the claimant's injuries.
Proving negligence is sometimes complicated. For instance, fault may not be clear-cut in a traffic accident. Or there could be challenges establishing the degree of fault when more than one party caused the crash.
Georgia follows the comparative negligence system and bars recovery if a claimant is 50 percent at fault or more. An accident reconstruction expert might provide testimony on the events and causes surrounding the collision.
Medical experts are commonly used in medical malpractice cases. Proving a physician or other healthcare provider’s negligence caused a patient’s injuries is complex. Oftentimes it’s hard to distinguish between the wrongful actions of a doctor and natural deterioration of the patient's health.
These types of witnesses might also be used to establish the severity of physical and/or emotional injuries. If someone claims medical negligence resulted in disability, an insurance company or the defendant might argue the claimant is exaggerating the injuries. A medical expert could support claims of injury severity.
Or a victim might suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, such as after barely surviving a devastating car crash. A mental health expert could be utilized in order to prove the psychological impact it’s had on the individual.
Get legal help from Jason R. Schultz in Atlanta if you're pursuing a personal injury case and would like to discuss types of evidence to support your case.