In Why a Medical Expert Witness Can Make or Break a Case, pulmonary medicine expert witness Dr. John Penek, MD, FCCP, FAASM, writes:
Whether the court case is civil or criminal in nature, both plaintiffs and defendants can benefit from the use of a medical expert witness. This is especially true in an era where forensic technology is growing by leaps and bounds.
Just what can a medical experts offer in the realm of traditional jurisprudence?
Role of a Medical Expert Witness.
Just like an orthopedic surgeon can attest to damages done to the spine or back during a personal injury lawsuit where a hurt plaintiff is suing for monetary compensation, an an expert may be able to prove that the injury claimed by a money seeking plaintiff is being over blow in an effort to obtain ill gained reparations.
Because a medical expert can make or break a case in this regard, their importance cannot be understated.
Present unbiased view of events.
Most court trials involve two views of events that can be difficult to sort through and prove. Because the outcome can in some cases be literally be a matter of life and death, it pays to be able to separate fact from fiction.
Science itself is fairly irrefutable and with a few notable exceptions is rarely inaccurate. This is why medical science can then be employed to prove or disprove claims on both sides of the fence.
Corroborate exonerating evidence.
Medical expert witness can help people who have been wrongly accused by providing information via testimony that breaks down a scenario based on medical evidence. When jurors are given these tools, they are able to weigh various factors to arrive to a conclusion. When irrefutable evidence is presented by such experts, the job of the juror becomes a whole lot easier.
Strengthen the case for the prosecution.
The same can be said for proving defendants guilt. Nine times out of ten, people who are criminally accountable for death or harm and injury to an individual will lie about the circumstances. A medical expert witness can dispute claims of innocence by producing information that calls their story into question.
As forensic technology continues to expand, the testimony and services of a medical expert witness will become a near standard in both civil and criminal court cases. This will lower chances of innocent people being falsely imprisoned for crimes they didn’t commit and reduce the chances of the guilty walking away scot free.
For this reason, medical experts will forever change the landscape of the criminal justice system.
Dr. John Penek has 30 years experience in the practice of pulmonary diseases, sleep disorders and critical care medicine.