What You Need To Know About Expert Witnesses and Their Role in Court Trials

The judicial system is never simple, no matter where you sit in the court room. Whether you are involved in a trial or following someone else’s, it can be helpful to know what the process looks like. A crucial person who may appear in many kinds of trials is an expert witness. Consider a few key facts that may help you understand this participant’s potential impact on the outcome of a case.

What Is an Expert Witness?

An expert witness is someone who is considered to have specialized and in-depth knowledge about a certain subject matter. Either the prosecuting or defending side may call upon this type of witness to support its stance. For example, an expert forensic psychology witness New York NY might testify in a case involving a defendant who may or may not have committed a crime because of a mental disorder.

What Is Their Area of Expertise?

There are numerous topics about which a witness may be considered an expert. Many witnesses testify about what seem to be more subjective matters, such as a person’s mental state or the best living situation for a child. Other experts provide insight into areas such as medicine, engineering or even forensic science. The type of witness will depend entirely on the case at hand and the point an attorney wishes to make.

How Does Their Testimony Affect a Trial?

One of the big ways expert witnesses influence a trial is by adding weight to what other more circumstantial witnesses may have testified. This goes to say that the credentials of experts often make their opinions seem more reliable to jurors. 

Expert witnesses serve a vital role in upholding the justice system. Understanding their purpose and the impact they can have on a case is essential to anyone involved in or following a trial.