Recently Brandi Steinberg participated in a deposition workshop with Jessica Wood, Esq. and Elissa Haynes, Esq. The Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Georgia held the event at BakerHostetler, and the intimate setting provided a great atmosphere for dialogue. Brandi, Jessica, and Elissa discussed several topics related to the attorney and expert relationship and how to prepare for expert depositions. At the end of their discussion, they presented a mock deposition. The young litigators were engaged throughout the presentation, and everyone had an enjoyable time together.
Maintain clear communication
- It is essential for the experts and attorneys to understand the timeline of the case and requirements from the Court. They must both communicate when deadlines change as well as the results of the expert’s analysis. If unexpected things occur, and timelines must change or additional documentation is necessary to complete the expert’s analysis, it must be communicated early.
Review of the expert’s analysis and report
- After the expert has completed his or her analysis, and the report and schedules have been prepared, they must be reviewed by the attorney. It is a best practice for the expert and attorney to meet at the expert’s office so that the report and schedules can be reviewed and edited. This gives the attorney a chance to ask and understand the findings of the expert and proofread the report and schedules for grammatical or factual errors before the report and schedules are finalized. It also allows the attorney and expert to begin to draft potential direct examination questions.
- The expert should not provide any drafts of the report and schedules to the attorney before it is finalized. It is very important to only issue one version of the report and schedules so that only one version is available to be provided to the Court or opposing counsel.
Preparation for expert deposition
- Because the expert may not be deposed immediately after the report and schedules are finalized, it is essential for the expert to review his or her report and schedules to re-familiarize him- or herself to the findings of the analysis. This will also be a great time for the attorney and expert to review direct examination and prepare for potential cross examination questions.
- The expert should also review a listing of the documents produced in the matter and reassess any documents which were pertinent to his or her report and schedules to refresh his or her memory as to the findings of the case. It is also a best practice for the expert to review any relevant depositions and exhibits which may impact his or her findings.
- If opposing counsel has an expert, the expert should review the opposing expert’s report and schedules to understand his or her findings. The expert can also assist the attorney in preparation of cross examination questions for the opposing expert.
For more information about the Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Georgia, please click here: https://www.gabar.org/committeesprogramssections/younglawyersdivision/[/fusion_text][one_half last=”no” class=”” id=””][/one_half][one_third last=”no” class=”” id=””][/one_third][two_third last=”no” class=”” id=””][/two_third]
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