2023 OFF Attacking a “Mt. Olympus” Expert’s Opinion at Deposition & Trial

(In-house Presentations & Live Webinars)

NOTE: to update grid image, find matching “GRID GENERATOR Draft page and follow instructions there. – martha 8/2020

The adverse expert is typically the most dangerous witness and, at the same time, the most vulnerable. Most dangerous because he testifies cloaked in the mantle of the “unbiased scientist”; thus his testimony – if accepted by the jury – can determine a major issue, maybe the entire case. Yet most vulnerable because, unlike the fact witness who must defend only his first-hand observations, the expert witness must defend his testimony from attacks on a dozen fronts.

As seasoned litigators from all areas of practice have attested (see Reviews), this presentation elucidates the one-and-only logical method with which to effectively attack the (purported) scientific merits of any adverse expert’s opinion … no matter the field of (purported) expertise. Never again be the slightest intimidated when cross-examining any expert, even a “Mt. Olympus” one.

Principal Discussion & Teaching Points:

  • Deposition cross-examination logic applied to experts
  • When attacks against the expert should be played at deposition
  • The structure of every opinion: O = R + 2F
  • End point opinions & subordinate opinions
  • Bedrock findings & bedrock assumptions
  • Cross-examiner’s critical listening skills
  • 5 categories of expert opinions
  • 2 must-be-asked questions
  • 10 types of expert rules
  • X & Y factors defined
  • Scientific rules & Sir Francis Bacon
  • Experiential rules & the “you-gotta-trust-me” expert
  • Attacking the scope of expert’s expertise
  • Non-expert rules
  • Understanding expert’s weighing process
  • 2 incredibly important – and easy to master – techniques
  • Attacks vs. expert’s claims re X factors
  • The “certainty scale” & 2 archetypal arguments
  • 6 sources of assumptions
  • 7 potential flaws re the expert’s assumption
  • Attacking expert’s findings derived through expert means
  • Attacking expert’s findings derived through non-expert means
  • Expert’s 3 – and only 3 – attacks vs. Y factors:
    • Relevance
    • Not established
    • Weight
  • Attacking expert’s double standard re case/career
  • The perfection line of questioning