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Law 101: Legal Guide for the Forensic Expert

Organizing Prior Writings and Testimony

It is difficult to remember everything one has said or written in the past. To help remember, the expert should devise and maintain a reliable system for categorizing all prior testimony and writings. Always consult these records at the outset of a potential assignment. This system can avoid professional embarrassment to the expert, a destructive effect on the case, and the potential of legal liability for nondisclosure.

Ways to organize prior publications include listing by:

  • Case name.
  • Location of property, evidence or event.
  • Description of the evidence-testing event.
  • Date of event.
  • The general or specific area of expertise involved.

The expert's system should include:

  • All reports rendered.
  • All articles and books written and published.
  • Transcripts of all of the expert's depositions and trial testimony.

Extensive cross-indexing when the matter is fresh in the expert's mind, such as immediately after the deposition or trial testimony, will prove useful later

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