Many car crashes cause significant injuries that require long-term care and assistance and result in significant losses of income. Thus, victims of collisions will often seek damages from the parties ultimately responsible for their harm. Liability and damages are frequently disputed in lawsuits arising out of car accidents, though, and it is not uncommon for parties to rely on experts to support their opinions. Experts must be disclosed to the opposing party, though, and if they are not, it may impact whether they can testify, as discussed in a recent Florida opinion. If you were injured in a collision brought about by someone else’s negligence, you might be able to recover damages, and you should meet with a knowledgeable Florida car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
The History of the Case
Reportedly, the plaintiff suffered harm in a collision caused by the defendants. The precise circumstances surrounding the accident and the damages sustained were not disclosed. It is clear, however, that the plaintiff sustained substantial injuries that resulted in the need for at-home care and caused a loss of earning capacity. Thus, she filed a lawsuit against the defendant in federal court. Prior to trial, the defendant retained experts to opine on the plaintiff’s life care costs and her loss of future earning capacity. The defendant failed to provide the plaintiff with experts by the disclosure deadline, though. As such, the plaintiff moved to preclude the defendant’s experts from testifying.
Disclosure of Experts in Personal Injury Cases
Under the federal rules of civil procedure, a party that fails to disclose an expert in a timely manner will generally be precluded from using the expert’s information or allowing the expert to testify at trial, unless the failure to promptly disclose the expert report was either harmless or substantially justified. The failure to disclose a report will be deemed harmless when it does not cause the party who is owed the report to suffer any prejudice. The court explained that prejudice occurs when an untimely disclosure prevents a party from thoroughly preparing its case via depositions of expert witnesses. Continue reading ›