In litigation, the conventional view says the person with the best argument will walk away a winner. The more cynical view holds that the person with the best lawyer is the one who will end up winning the case. While there is some merit to each viewpoint, the truth is even more complex than that. In reality, the person who will win in most trials is the person who comes with the best collection of experts. Expert witness services are changing the game in business litigation, construction litigation, banking litigation and many more areas of the law.
What do expert witnesses provide that is so valuable today? The first thing they provide is an intimidation element. Expert witnesses tend to scare the other side and give your side leverage. When you’re in a trial, you’ll want as many tools as you can get to gain that critical leverage. If you’re the plaintiff in a lawsuit, the defendant will look at your expert witness and re-consider whether he or she wants to enter into a settlement. It’s a great way for plaintiffs to get an edge in those cases where they might have lagged behind before.
In addition to that, experts can provide some credibility in the eyes of jury members. While jury members know that lawyers have a reason to bend the truth and they understand that plaintiffs and defendants both have incentives to make things up, they view expert witnesses as being both credible and objective. If you’re ever in the courtroom when a trial is taking place, you might see jury members perk up when an expert gets on the stand. This is because they feel they are getting something that is much more valuable than what they have been hearing at other times in the trial.
Lastly, the expert witnesses that help people win trials are those who can explain tough subjects as if those things are simple. Most lawyers don’t have a sophisticated understanding of bank regulation. They don’t understand the physics behind building something. If they try to explain these things, they are likely to get tripped up. It is the job of the expert to explain the topics in a way that the jury can both understand and appreciate. When experts do this, witnesses are much more likely to take their side seriously and render a favorable verdict.