A lawyer’s failure to obtain expert witness can give rise to a New Jersey legal malpractice claim. An expert testifies based on expertise and/or experience in a chosen field. Examples of expert witnesses include doctors, accountants, and accident reconstruction experts. Especially in personal injury and medical malpractice cases, the entire case may ride on expert medical testimony. Most of the time, people who are injured are not qualified to testify about the medical details of their injuries. This is where an expert becomes critical.
Experts can be critical in legal malpractice cases. A lawyer must be hired as an expert to explain how a defendant failed in representing his/her client.
Experts are also critical in many cases to calculate damages. Accountants and economists play active roles in providing expert testimony to calculate damages. An expert’s calculation of damages can occur in cases as varied as personal injury to contract.
In a lawsuit, the expert has to sometimes supply an Affidavit of Merit. In most instances, the expert will set forth theories in a written report before trial. At trial, the expert can be called to testify as a witness.
If a lawyer fails to obtain an expert witness or expert report, it can give rise to a New Jersey Legal Malpractice claim. Similarly, a claim can also arise if the lawyer does not take appropriate steps to ensure that an expert will appear at trial. In some instances, a lawsuit will be dismissed if an expert report is not produced. Likewise, if an expert fails to appear at trial, it can also result in the loss of a claim.
If you believe that you had a claim that was dismissed because of a lawyer’s failure to obtain an expert report or to arrange for an expert to appear at trial, please contact Ronald J. Wronko, Esq. for a free consultation.