October 31, 2012

Your Competitive Advantage As An Expert Witness Part 2

In Your Competitive Advantage, leading authority on expert witness marketing and founder of Expert Communications Rosalie Hamilton writes:

After objectively assessing your own strengths and weaknesses, determine your competitive advantage. Is your education or professional experience superior? If you are not a novice, have you handled a greater number of cases, or bigger or more successful cases, or have you worked with prestigious law firms? Do you present yourself more professionally or appear more credible? Are there exclusive dimensions to your expertise? What comprises your personal uniqueness and, therefore, your competitive edge?

Read more: http://www.expertcommunications.com/

October 29, 2012

Cross Exam Of Defense Experts

In The deposition and cross-exam of defense experts, A narrative guide to asking the right questions at deposition and trial, trial attorney Arash Homampour discusses:

Expert deposition notice and trial subpoena
Videotaping
Researching the expert

Read more: http://www.theadvocatemagazine.com/Homampour-article.pdf

October 28, 2012

Patents Expert Witnesses

Patents expert witnesses may write reports on drug patents, patent prosecution, and patent infringement. In a recent post on www.becker-posner-blog.com, Professor Gary S. Becker, University of Chicago, Departments of Economics, Graduate School of Business, and Sociology, writes on Reforming the Patent System Toward a Minimalist System.

Read more: www.becker-posner-blog.com.

October 26, 2012

Groundwater Expert Witness & Quarry Expansion

Groundwater expert witness Charles W. Brown, III, testified in the Dorrance, PA, Conditional Use hearing for the Pennsy Supply owned Small Mountain Quarry. Brown is with the hydrogeological and geotechnical field study company Hydro-Geo Services and ran tests regarding plans to expand the quarry.

October 24, 2012

Invention Patents Expert Witnesses

Invention patents expert witnesses may write reports and testify on software patents, patent infringement, computer patents, and related matters. In the news, the smartphone industry alone spent as much as $20 billion on patent litigation and patent purchases in the past two years.
Geekosystem.com notes that in 2011 Apple and Google spent more on patents than they did on research and development.

October 23, 2012

Rosalie Hamilton On Expert Witness Advertising Part 2

In Who Said Experts Shouldn't Advertise?, leading authority on expert witness marketing and founder of Expert Communications Rosalie Hamilton writes:

In response to one of our recent emails to Expert News readers, we received an email saying, “I thought experts are not supposed to advertise, even through websites.”

I think you might find our dialogue of interest. I have edited the communication for length and confidentiality.
My emailed reply was:

....What experts need to be aware of is that their advertising, including their website, and their written articles, spoken presentations, and all other expression and utterances are available for scrutiny and potential criticism, so all of it needs to be professional and even conservative. An example of this caution would be to state on your website your areas of expertise and the services you perform for attorneys and the Court but not to state that you can help one side win or make other promises that bring your objectivity into question.

I hope this is helpful to you.

Read more: http://www.expertcommunications.com/

October 23, 2012

Pesticides Expert Witnesses

Pesticides expert witnesses may give opinions regarding pesticide contamination, pesticide products, and pesticide pollution. According to the International HCH and Pesticides Association, it is very difficult to estimate to assess the real extent of the obsolete pesticides problem, as only a limited number of field investigations have been made globally, but the best preliminary guess gives the estimate of over 300,000 tons world wide. IHPA promotes the management of pollution problems stemming from the production and use of HCH and other unwanted pesticides worldwide.

Read more: http://www.ihpa.info/

October 22, 2012

Patents Expert Witnesses

Patents expert witnesses may write reports on drug patents, patent prosecution, and patent infringement. In a recent post on /www.becker-posner-blog.com, Judge Richard Posner of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit writes:

Do patent and copyright law restrict competition and creativity excessively?

I am concerned that both patent and copyright protection, though particularly the former, may be excessive.

To evaluate optimal patent protection for an invention, one has to consider both the cost of inventing and the cost of copying; the higher the ratio of the former to the
latter, the greater the optimal patent protection for the inventor.

Read more: http://www.becker-posner-blog.com

October 21, 2012

Biomechanics Expert Witness On Helmets & Concussion Part 4

In Do Helmets Prevent Concussion? biomechanics expert witness John D. Lloyd, Ph.D., M.Erg.S., CPE, CBIS, writes:

Protection against concussion and axonal injury is especially important for young players, including peewee, high school, and college participants, whose still-developing brains are more susceptible to the lasting effects of encephalopathy. Therefore, the need to develop headgear to protect susceptible individuals from life-changing brain damage is paramount.

Consistent with their innovative approach to meeting the challenges of brain trauma, combined with 20+ years of experience in biomechanics, and neurophysiology, BRAINS researchers have investigated several new technologies to measure and reduce the debilitating effects of concussion in football players. The team is poised to integrate their new technology into helmet design – a paradigm-shift in helmet construction – and bring to market a more comprehensive form of head gear to defend against catastrophic brain injuries while also mitigating linear forces associated with impact.

October 20, 2012

School Safety Expert Witness On School Safety Cases Part 3

In EVALUATING AN EXPERT WITNESS FOR SCHOOL SAFETY CASES, school safety expert witness Michael Dorn writes:

A careful reading of his expert witness resume showed a lack of advanced and relevant formal training and work experience for some of the key issues in the case. There were also questions about some serious issues in his past, such as a reported termination from a position as a school security director, allegations of involvement in unethical bidding practices, a reputation for frequently harassing school systems and government agencies that would not hire him by filing open records requests, and lodging complaints and making derogatory statements about the organizations in press releases and media interviews. I felt this expert witness would likely not withstand a thorough and skilled examination by a competent and properly prepared attorney. The attorney who retained this expert for the defense apparently missed these potential problem areas in the expert’s background. When plaintiff’s counsel prepared to vigorously challenge the qualifications of the defense expert at deposition, the defense withdrew the expert, and soon thereafter settled the case on terms suitable to the plaintiff. While the defense had other problems with their case, losing what they thought was a top caliber expert witness well into the court proceedings certainly did not help.

October 18, 2012

Psychology Expert Witness Testfies In Sentencing

Psychology expert witness Dr. Antoinette McGarrahan testified during the sentencing of convicted killer Steven Lawayne Nelson. Nelson suffocated 28 year old Arlington, TX, Baptist minister Clint Dobson in 2011. Dr. McGarrahan testified that Nelson is a violent psychopath.

October 17, 2012

Excessive Force Expert Witness Testifies In Case Against Maryland Officers

A former Maryland state trooper testified as an excessive force expert witness in the case against Prince George County, MD, officers Reginald Baker and James Harrison. Baker and Harrison are charged with excessive force in hitting a University of Maryland student with batons during a basketball postgame celebration. Student John McKenna was defenseless and on the ground.

October 16, 2012

Biomechanics Expert Witness On Helmets & Concussion Part 3

In Do Helmets Prevent Concussion? biomechanics expert witness John D. Lloyd, Ph.D., M.Erg.S., CPE, CBIS, writes:

Using proprietary miniature sensors to measure concussion risk at the center of the brain, BRAINS researchers completed more than 330 tests across ten popular helmet brands. The team concluded that while these helmets provide excellent protection from linear impacts – those leading to bruising and skull fracture – they offer little or no protection against angular acceleration, a dangerous source of brain injury and encephalopathy.

Results show percent reduction in linear impact acceleration, Head Injury Criterion (HIC), and angular acceleration provided by the different football helmets, compared to the same impact with no helmet. Note that all helmets provide considerable protection from skull fracture (blue) and focal brain impact (green), but are far less effective at reducing risk of diffuse brain injury and concussion and encephalopathy (red). In fact, some helmet designs offer no significant protection from concussion — and those that offer the least protection are among the most popular on the field.

October 15, 2012

School Safety Expert Witness On School Safety Cases Part 2

In EVALUATING AN EXPERT WITNESS FOR SCHOOL SAFETY CASES, school safety expert witness Michael Dorn writes:

Introduction
There has been a dramatic increase in the number of people who work in the field of school safety, security and emergency preparedness since the tragic Columbine High School attack on April 20, 1999. Many practitioners are highly skilled and qualified. Some experts are properly qualified to work in some areas, but have no relevant background in other areas. This has led to a significant problem with school safety experts who work outside their areas of expertise. As with other disciplines, school safety expert witnesses who work outside their specialties can have a significant impact on court cases. For example, school safety experts have incurred financial liability for allegedly working beyond their areas of expertise as was the case in the deadly Red Lake Reservation school shooting.

Problems in addition to experts working beyond their field of expertise should be considered. For example, in a civil action brought against a public school system by the parents of a student murdered on campus, the school system settled the case shortly after they withdrew one of their expert witnesses prior to his deposition. I had been asked by plaintiff’s counsel to evaluate the defense’s expert witness to help counsel prepare to depose him. Though this expert witness had been interviewed by national media organizations, had many years of experience as a school safety consultant, had served previously as an expert witness in school safety cases, and had what could at first glance appear to be seemingly impressive credentials, I had questions about his suitability to serve as an expert witness.

October 14, 2012

Your Competitive Advantage As An Expert Witness Part 1

In Your Competitive Advantage, leading authority on expert witness marketing and founder of Expert Communications Rosalie Hamilton writes:

Who is your competition, and how do you compare? Considering that most cases requiring an expert witness involve at least two experts and our society shows no signs of becoming less litigious, competition should not be your primary concern in building an expert practice. You will learn valuable lessons, however, from analyzing the practices of two or three experts in your field. Study their professional qualifications, appearance, communication skills, and reputation among their peers, and note how they market themselves and the fees they charge.

Read more: http://www.expertcommunications.com/

October 13, 2012

Rosalie Hamilton On Expert Witness Advertising Part 1

In Who Said Experts Shouldn't Advertise?, leading authority on expert witness marketing and founder of Expert Communications Rosalie Hamilton writes:

In response to one of our recent emails to Expert News readers, we received an email saying, “I thought experts are not supposed to advertise, even through websites.”

I think you might find our dialogue of interest. I have edited the communication for length and confidentiality.
My emailed reply was:

XXX, I don't know where such an idea could have come from. I've only heard it from a couple of defense attorneys who of course don't want experts making themselves available for plaintiff lawyers as well as for defense (defense - including insurance - attorneys have no trouble finding experts; plaintiff attorneys have more difficulty, thus look for experts' advertising, as well as in other ways). Doctors and lawyers advertise; churches advertise; and so does every other product and service we use -- advertising is a fact of life.

Read more: http://www.expertcommunications.com/

October 11, 2012

Computer Forensics Expert Witness Testifies In

Computer forensics expert witness Colleen Auer-Lemke of the Michigan State Police Computer Crimes Unit testified in the Ken Bluew murder trial. Bluew, suspended from the Buena Vista Township Police force, is charged with first-degree murder in the death of 32-year-old Jenny Webb.

October 10, 2012

Rheumatology Expert Witnesses

Rheumatology expert witnesses may provide reports concerning fibromyalgia, arthritis, and lupus. Chief of Rheumatology at Hamad Medical Corporation, Dr. Mohammed Hammoudeh recently described arthritis as a serious public health problem which can cause disability in a child with long reaching results. For this reason, early diagnosis is crucial.

October 9, 2012

Biomechanics Expert Witness On Helmets & Concussion Part 2

In Do Helmets Prevent Concussion? biomechanics expert witness John D. Lloyd, Ph.D., M.Erg.S., CPE, CBIS, writes:

BRAINS Researchers Reveal Deficiencies in Football Helmet Design

Researchers at BRAINS, Inc. have conducted biomechanical tests revealing the deficiency of current football helmet designs in protecting players from brain injury, particularly concussion.

Historically, helmet effectiveness has been measured through drop-tests, using a device approved by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE). The result is helmets that are optimized against skull fractures, bruising, and other focal effects. “We modified the standard test device to consider rotational acceleration in addition to conventional linear impact measures” explains John Lloyd, PhD. Biomechanical researchers have long understood that angular forces can cause serious brain damage including concussion, axonal injury, and hemorrhages.

October 7, 2012

School Safety Expert Witness On School Safety Cases Part 1

In EVALUATING AN EXPERT WITNESS FOR SCHOOL SAFETY CASES, school safety expert witness Michael Dorn writes:

Purpose of this paper
This document is designed to help legal risk management practitioners who must evaluate the match between an expert and a school safety court case. Court cases involving school safety issues are extremely important because they can at times involve not only millions of dollars, but also have a major impact on the lives of victims, surviving family members as well as the people and organizations named as defendants. For example, a student who incurs serious permanent injury may require millions of dollars in future medical care over a lifetime. At the same time, serious allegations of misconduct or negligence can affect the lives and reputations of school officials, public safety officials and school organizations named as defendants.

This article provides a list of questions attorneys may want to ask an expert witness before deciding to retain the expert as well as tips for evaluating an expert witness retained by opposing counsel. This information should be helpful to insurance professionals and judges who are tasked with determining if an expert is properly qualified for a particular case. As a non-profit school safety center, the goal of Safe Havens International is to help make schools safer, more effective places to learn and to work. Efficient and fair resolution of legal disputes relating to school safety situations supports these goals.

October 6, 2012

Brain Injury Expert Witness On Traumatic Brain Injury Victims Part 2

In The Many Faces of TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY, brain injury expert witness Dr. John D. Lloyd, PhD, MErgS, CPE, CBIS, writes:

The brain is the most complex thing in the world. A baby’s brain at birth, weighing about 1 pound is already one-third the size of a typical 3-pound adult brain. And if we consider that there are one million nerve cells in a section of brain the size of a grain of rice, it is impossible to comprehend the billions and billions of neuronal pathways in an average brain. In fact, there are more neural connections in each brain than there are stars in the sky. A baby’s brain is the last of the major organs to develop in utero, where neurons are born from the division of a stem cell. Unlike most cells in the body, which die and are replaced, neurons, which are formed in the fetus, are designed to last for a lifetime.

There are two primary mechanisms associated with traumatic brain injury – impact loading and impulse loading.

Impact loading is caused by a direct blow to the head, resulting in extracranial focal injuries, such as contusions, lacerations and hematomas (bruises), skull fractures with or without penetrating injuries. The shock waves from a blunt force trauma may propel through the skull and brain causing underlying focal brain injuries, such as subdural, subarachnoid, intracerebral hemorrhages. The primary traumatic effects of an impact involve neural or vascular elements of the brain, which can be affected by delayed effects, such as deafferentiation or secondary events such as ischemia, swellings, cerebral edema and increased intracranial pressure. Impact TBIs produce significant injuries in 40.4% of events, the most common example of which is a fall.

October 5, 2012

Forensic Accounting Expert Witness On Corporate Securities Lawsuits Part 2

In EFFECTIVE VALUATION & LITIGATION SUPPORT IN CORPORATE SECURITIES LAWSUITS, forensic accounting expert witness Richard M. Squar, CPA, CVA, ABV, CFF, MBA-Taxation, writes:

CORPORATE SECURITIES LITIGATION

• Minority shareholder rights
• Going public or going private transactions
• Securities fraud
• Buy-sell agreements
• Corporate dissolution

Damages are included regarding fraudulent security transactions. Damages here are often measured as the difference between the intrinsic value of the securities involved and the actual price at which shares were exchanged.

This article touches the surface on some key concepts in valuation and litigation support services applicable to corporate securities lawsuits. Directors’ decision-making abilities are expanded knowing the benefits of including and relying upon an effective valuation expert early in corporate securities cases.

VALUATION CONCEPTS
The appraisal valuation date is normally the date the transaction regarding alleged effects upon the dissenting shareholder(s) occurred. The valuation may be expanded to include the date of trial and possibly, in fraud cases, the date the fraud was publicly discovered.
The appropriate standard of value to apply is where the expert often begins.

October 4, 2012

Biomechanics Expert Witness On Helmets & Concussion Part 1

In Do Helmets Prevent Concussion? biomechanics expert witness John D. Lloyd, Ph.D., M.Erg.S., CPE, CBIS, writes:

Concussion, also known as mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI), is a leading health issue resulting from head impacts associated with sports, recreation and transportation. Youths are particularly susceptible to head injury, though it can also devastate a professional career. Full recovery from mTBI often takes longer than expected, without which a second, even relatively innocuous, impact could have catastrophic outcomes.

Helmet manufacturers realize that their products may not reduce the risk of concussion and even NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) standards are based on tests that ignore risks associated with concussions. Yet, clinicians recognize that brain injuries are caused by a combination of impact and impulse mechanisms, which engineers are readily able to measure in terms of linear and angular head motions.

October 3, 2012

Preventive Medicine Expert Witness On Freeway Expansion

Preventative medicine expert Rob McConnell, MD, presented evidence at a public forum regarding the 710 freeway extension in Pasadena, CA. McConnell, Professor of Preventative Medicine at the USC Keck School of Medicine said the 710 Freeway is considered the dirtiest freeway in the country and an expansion could mean increased health problems for nearby residents.

October 2, 2012

DNA Expert Witness Testifies Re: DNA Hair Analysis

DNA expert witness Huma Nasir testified in the Marietta, GA, murder case against Waseem Daker. Nasir is with Orchid Cellmark which has performed DNA forensic analyses in tens of thousands of cases and for hundreds of thousands of offender samples. The DNA expert stated that a hair sample found under the victim's shirt matched Daker's DNA.

October 1, 2012

Hydrogeology Expert Witness On Quarry Expansion

Hydrogeology expert witness Robert Hershey testified at the Dorrance Township’s (PA) hearing where Small Mountain Quarry requested expanding mining operations. Hershey is Principal Hydogeologist at Meiser & Earl, a hydrogeologic and environmental consulting firm. Hershey described the potential impact to groundwater, wetlands, and the flow system of water below the surface.