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Archived updates for Thursday, May 11, 2006

Sinful Expert Detachment

In "The Se7en Deadly Expert Sins," Bill Hueter writes that lawyers often fail to work closely with an expert on outlines and deadlines and to communicate their expectations early and often.
Detachment can result in a weak expert report, strained relations and excessive costs. Avoid this by meeting with and reviewing the expert's work early and often. Establish a schedule well in advance of deadlines to work with the expert on outlines and drafts. Help the expert find the right tone for the report and define its breadth and depth.A related problem comes from a lawyer's fear of confronting an expert if problems do arise. Knowing the expert will soon be testifying and not wanting to create friction, the attorney may choose to say nothing. This only perpetuates and exacerbates the problem. Talk through problems as soon as they arise. Be frank and address your concerns. Use good management skills and good communication skills.
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