UKTC Archive

Changes to way expert witnesses will be required to give evidence in civil courts

Subject: Changes to way expert witnesses will be required to give evidence in civil courts
From: Bettina Broadway-Mann
Date: Dec 22 2017 10:21:33
Morning All,
I had this through from Bond Solon and thought it might be of interest to
some of you -

Regards
Bettina

At the end of November 2017, *amendments to CPR Practice Direction 35.11*
(CPR PD 35.11) came into force. These amendments implement a number of
recommendations made by the Civil Justice Council’s (CJC) report -
Concurrent expert evidence and ‘hot-tubbing’ in English litigation since
the ‘Jackson Reforms’. These changes will affect the way expert witnesses
will be required to give evidence in civil courts.

Key points from the amendment include:

   - Concurrent expert evidence is not suitable in every case.
   - Courts can use a combination of concurrent expert evidence and
   traditional cross examination.
   - Expert evidence can be presented on an issue by issue basis and there
   is more flexibility.
   - The court sets the agenda or approves what the parties have prepared
   for the concurrent evidence.
   - Questions may try to elicit evidence on any issue even that omitted
   from the initial presentation as well as testing the evidence.

Since the Civil Justice Council’s report on concurrent expert evidence, the
Civil Procedure Rules Committee had been considering how to amend PD35.11,
the direction which deals specifically with expert evidence in court.

There had been speculation that Concurrent Expert Evidence, was to become
the default procedure when experts gave evidence. However this has not
materialised. The new CPR PD 35.11 is about flexibility. Rather than making
concurrent expert evidence the default position, the amendments now make it
possible for expert witnesses to give their evidence in at least three
different ways:

   - Traditional cross examination;
   - Concurrent Expert Evidence, for which the process is set out in
   PD35.11(4);
   - “any appropriate manner”, including an issue-by-issue cross
   examination process.

For the full text of the amended PD35.11, please click here
<http://click.wilmingtongroup-email.com/?qs=994020f45fea2e8781a47f15f42f0c1d4ce513b0c2565XXXXXXXc309cbcc97dc08fb4d310d890a0a948825XXXXXXXXXa488fd1dacf574042>

This change affects all expert witnesses giving evidence in the civil
courts and experts now need to be familiar with all three identified
methods.



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