The success of a personal injury lawsuit depends on the ability of the plaintiff to prove his or her case with respect to both liability and damages. To do so, the plaintiff must provide the judge or jury with adequate information upon which to reach a conclusion. As a result, expert witnesses are a critical part of any personal injury lawsuit because they can provide the information necessary to support the plaintiff’s claim.
An expert witness is someone with scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge that will testify in a deposition and/or at trial in order to help the judge or jury understand the circumstances of a case. Expert witness are frequently used in medical malpractice lawsuits, in which they will provide testimony regarding the standard of care, the plaintiff’s injuries, and the appropriate amount of damages.
But expert witnesses are often used in other types of personal injury lawsuits, such as auto accident lawsuits, trucking accident lawsuits, and slip and fall lawsuits. In these situations, expert witnesses can take many forms. For instance, in an auto accident or trucking accident lawsuit, an accident reconstruction expert will use his or her knowledge to “reconstruct” the accident, providing information on how the accident happened and an opinion on the cause of the accident. Accident reconstruction experts rely on information and evidence such as: the size and weight of the vehicles involved, the vehicle equipment, the road surface, road conditions at the time of the accident, photographs, police reports, forensic measurements, and other pieces of information.
In some personal injury lawsuits, an expert witness may provide testimony regarding various human factors, such as what the driver could have perceived at the time of the accident and the amount of time it takes to react to certain stimuli. For instance, an expert witness might provide information regarding the length of time that it takes a driver to see and respond to another vehicle running a red light to determine whether the accident could have been avoided.
Other expert witnesses include accountants and financial experts, who can provide information regarding the long financial implications of an injury; and life care planning experts who can provide information regarding the long-term medical care that will be needed to treat the injuries and the vocational abilities of the plaintiff in light of the injuries.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
Because expert witnesses provide testimony regarding liability and damages in a personal injury lawsuit, it is incredibly important to consult with and retain a lawyer who can help you find the appropriate expert witness for your case. The Chicago personal injury law firm of Cogan & Power, P.C. focuses on representing clients in a variety of personal injury lawsuits and, accordingly, we are able to draw on a vast network of knowledgeable expert witnesses.
As dedicated Chicago personal injury lawyers,we advocate for injured adults, children and newborns, as well as the family members of deceased victims, throughout Illinois. We are proud to have recovered more than $600 million in settlements and verdicts on behalf of people who have suffered injury or loss because of someone else’s negligence or misconduct.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a personal injury accident, contact Cogan & Power, P.C. at (312) 477-2500 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our Chicago personal injury lawyers.