If you are filing an injury lawsuit against someone, then the burden of proving that person’s negligence rests on you. After your attorney examines the evidence and details of your injury case, he or she will decide whether an outside professional should present certain information in court. The purpose of hiring these expert witnesses is to bolster your case and get you an amount that adequately compensates you for your losses.
The Role of Expert Witnesses in a Personal Injury Case
Expert witnesses offer a professional opinion of certain aspects of your injury. The types of experts who may be called to testify will depend on the nature of the case, but commonly include mechanics, economists, and medical professionals. A good expert witness will have demonstrated expertise in a particular field, have a reliable opinion on relevant facts, and be able to present information clearly. The better an expert witness is at explaining disputed details, the more likely it is that you will receive an acceptable settlement offer, since the defendant will not want to take the chance of losing at trial.
An expert witness may be used to conclusively prove:
- The cause of the accident. Insurance companies will often try to underpay or deny injury claims in any way they can, especially if a large amount of compensation is at stake. One of the most common ways is to deny liability, shifting the blame onto another party or the victim himself. An accident reconstructionist can evaluate the accident scene and recreate it, demonstrating the relevant factors using diagrams and court exhibits.
- The extent of your injuries. Doctors who specialize in certain injuries (such as neck and back injuries) may give their opinions on what types of treatment may be needed, possible lifting and movement restrictions, and the effects your injury may have over the rest of your life.
- The amount of your income losses. If your injury has resulted in disability, vocational experts may be needed to estimate the full value of your occupational losses. These professionals can describe how likely you are to earn a sustainable living, calculate the amount of past wages and bonuses you have lost, and show how your financial life is likely to be impacted in the future.
Our attorneys represent individuals throughout Illinois and Missouri who have suffered serious personal injuries, including those caused by commercial trucks. Simply fill out the short contact form on this page to schedule an appointment for a free consultation.