This session will provide in-house counsel with an in-depth view of the legal, strategic and ethical considerations in the effective use of expert evidence in litigation.
- The Legal Test
It is essential to understand why, for what purposes, and in what contexts expert evidence is admissible. The first portion of the session will canvass the law on expert evidence as it has developed since the Supreme Court of Canada laid down the test in R. v. Mohan.
- Choosing an Expert
Once you know that you want – or need – expert evidence, you must select an expert who will help you build your case and help you present your case persuasively to the decision-maker. The second portion of the session will examine key practical and legal considerations to help guide this important choice.
- Challenging Opposing Experts
If the other side presents an expert report and is going to call an expert witness to testify, can you weaken or eliminate that expert evidence through a legal challenge? The third portion of the session will examine the legal and strategic considerations involved in deciding whether to challenge an opposing expert and, if so, how best to mount an attack.
- Professional and Ethical Issues
The collection and use of expert evidence raises a number of professional and ethical questions, including: What can you discuss with your expert during breaks in his/her testimony? What are your duties of confidentiality and how can you best protect the confidentiality of solicitor-client communications in the context of communications with an expert? Is there any conflict between your duty as an advocate and the expert’s duty of impartiality? The fourth portion of the session will provide information and insights from experience into these challenging questions.
This program has been accredited by the Law Society for 0.5 Professionalism Hour