Having a knowledgeable medical expert can be a game-changer for your case
Many legal cases require the expertise of a medical expert. This is especially true when attorneys represent a client harmed due to medical malpractice. Hiring a medical expert with in-depth knowledge of a particular medical specialty can make legal cases stronger.
But how do you decide which medical expert to hire? How do you know if they have the knowledge and the medical expertise you need to give your case an edge? Experienced lawyers carefully research these aspects. This includes the selection process for a medical expert, especially if a case goes to trial and requires testimony from a medical expert witness.
Below, you can find some of the questions attorneys should consider asking when deciding who to hire to serve as a medical expert for their legal case.
Questions to ask when choosing a medical expert
If you’re hiring a medical expert to work with your legal team, don’t simply type “medical expert witness near me” into your computer and stop your search there. Go the extra mile and get the best medical experts. Often, that involves asking key questions to identify them.
What are the medical expert’s credentials?
Medical experts have a lot in common with attorneys. This includes their credentials. When deciding which medical expert to hire, make sure they have the necessary credentials to provide expert testimony. For example, if they’re a cardiologist, are they board certified? If they’re an anesthesiologist, do they have the necessary certifications to work as a licensed anesthesiologist?
Other credentials to consider when hiring a medical expert – where did they do their medical residency? Which college or university did they obtain their medical degree from? Medical credentials matter. Juries know this. And credentialed medical professionals can provide knowledgeable insights into your legal case.
How much experience do they have?
Two types of experience matter when choosing a medical expert to advise on a legal case – medical experience and courtroom experience. The medical professional should have extensive medical experience. This way, they understand standard medical procedures and protocols and when other medical professionals failed to abide by such standards.
But medical experience is only part of the equation. The best medical experts have courtroom experience as well. Courtrooms are very different from operating rooms and other medical settings. Experienced medical experts know how to talk to judges and juries. They also understand the legal process and what’s expected of medical experts at each step.
What is their reputation?
What people say about a lawyer matters. The same is true with medical experts. Look for reviews about individual medical experts. What do attorneys, medical professionals, and others say about them? By reading reviews, you can learn a lot about a medical expert.
But don’t stop there. Sometimes, reviews can be deceptive. Contact medical professionals directly and ask them for references or recommendations from other medical professionals or other lawyers they have worked with in the past. What they say speaks volumes.
Do they know how to communicate with a jury?
If you’re a trial-tested courtroom lawyer, you know how critical it is to communicate clearly in court. When you talk to a prospective medical expert, ask them to explain how they can add depth to your case. Listen to the words they use to talk about your case. Notice how clear and concise they speak. Do they use a lot of medical jargon? Or do they use words that everyone can understand? Juries need to understand what medical experts say to them. This is why you need to choose a medical expert who knows how to communicate the medical issues associated with your case.
Can they be objective and reliable?
Communicating clearly with a jury is just one of the traits medical experts need when testifying in a medical case in court. Medical experts also need to be objective and reliable. If a jury thinks a medical expert is trying to mislead them, they may recognize this and not take what the expert says seriously. Juries need to trust medical experts. That’s why medical professionals testifying in court need to be objective.
Your legal case needs to be built on facts. Unbiased evidence presented by a credible medical expert can be tremendously valuable. That’s why you need a medical expert who can stick to the facts and explain in plain language why the jury should rule in favor of your client.
Learn how a medical expert can help with your legal case
Choosing the right medical expert with the proper medical expertise can be challenging. Don’t simply settle for the “medical expert witness near me” online. Take the time to find a qualified and experienced medical professional who can add value to your case.
Rieback Medical-Legal Consultants provides the legal community with qualified medical experts nationwide with extensive experience in a range of medical specialties. Our medical professionals thoroughly understand how the legal system works and can help you build a stronger legal case based on solid evidence. If you need a medical expert for your legal case, contact us to learn more about how we can help you.