Comments for Expert Witness in the State of Alabama

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Feb 05, 2009
They are determined by each judge....
by: WFR

There is no licensing of experts for state or Federal courts. The general rule is that a witness may be deemed by a judge to be an expert in a particular field based on education, training and/or experience. The would-be expert's background must give him/her knowledge beyond that of a lay juror. All expert witnesses must undergo a process called voir dire at the beginning of their testimony. In voir dire the party proffering the expert elicits evidence of the witness's expertise through direct examination; the opposing party may then cross-examine the witness on his/her qualifications. If after voir dire the judge decides the witness is an expert the party proffering the witness can then and only then elicit the expert's opinion through direct examination. If the judge decides the witness is not an expert his/her testimony is terminated at that point and the witness is excused. Failure to qualify as an expert is usually a career-ending event.

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