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Re: Depositions

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I think that your input as both an engineer *and* a lawyer would be very 
valuable to anyone who is about to testify as an expert witness.

I, too, replied privately to the post based upon my experiences over the past 
thirty some odd years.  I remember my first experience testifying.  Although 
I told my client's attorney that I had never testified before and requested 
advice, he was inexperienced in utilizing an expert witness.  At trial, 
whenever my client's attorney asked my opinion on something, the opposing 
counsel objected based on "insufficient background."  Trying to justify my 
opinion based on *all* the technical knowledge that I had got nowhere, 
causing me frustration to no end, until one question was asked.  That 
question got the (now) expected objection, however, the opinion that was 
sought was based on my "knowledge, experience and registration as a 
professional engineer."  When I answered thusly, no objection was raised and 
I quickly realized that the "background" was not the technical background on 
which I came to my conclusions, but my professional background qualifying me 
to testify as to my "opinion," something that we engineers consider as 
"facts," but which the legal system views as "opinions."  Needless to say, 
when further objections were raised based on "insufficient background" I 
repeated the qualifying statement and was able to get my testimony in.  
Although I have never met the opposing attorney again, either socially or in 
court, I continually thank him for adding significantly to my education as 
an expert.

A. Roger Turk, P.E.(Structural)
Tucson, Arizona

Bob McGhie wrote:

. > I replied privately to the poster but would be willing to post a 
. > general reply to this list if there is enough interest.
. > 
. > Robert McGhie, Esq.
. >