Expert Witness Services: Leveraging Legal Expertise for Litigation Support

May 27, 2024 Employment Law Expert Witness

Expert witnesses often play a vital role in HR-related litigation. When the available evidence doesn’t tell the whole story, expert witnesses can fill in the gaps so that judges and jurors can feel confident they are making informed decisions.

But, how do you choose an expert witness for HR-related litigation? What can (and should) you expect from the expert you hire? Here are some key considerations:

How an HR Expert Witness Can Help

Qualified expert witnesses can assist with HR-related litigation in several ways. This includes not only providing testimony at trial, but also providing expertise and insights during the pre-trial phase of the litigation process. Some of the services a qualified HR expert witness should be able to provide include:

  • Conducting workplace investigations and interviews
  • Examining workplace investigation reports
  • Examining HR policies and procedures, performance reviews, and other key documents
  • Laying out the relevant facts and noting facts are not relevant to a particular claim or defense
  • Applying the relevant law to the facts at hand

These are just examples. At AR Group, we routinely provide expert witness services for HR-related litigation, and we custom-tailor our services to each law firm’s and litigant’s specific preferences, goals, and needs.

Key Characteristics of an Effective HR Expert Witness

When choosing an expert witness for HR-related litigation, it is important to focus on certain key characteristics. An article on Bloomberg Law calls these the “Four C’s”:

  • Clear Communication – An expert witness should be able to communicate clearly with counsel and in court. The more complex the issues involved in HR-related litigation are, the more important it is that an expert witness is able to explain these issues clearly and concisely.
  • Coachability – Expert witnesses should also be coachable. This does not mean that counsel should be able to influence their expert opinion, but rather that they should be able to work constructively with counsel and be an asset to the litigation team.
  • Confidence – Expert witnesses need to be confident in their opinions. If an expert witness contradicts himself or herself or cannot respond effectively to cross-examination at trial, his or her involvement could do more harm than good.
  • Candor – Candor is fundamental to serving as an effective expert witness. Expert witnesses must be clear about their qualifications and findings, and they must be willing to acknowledge when there are unknowns or when issues fall outside of their expertise.

Hiring an Attorney as an Expert Witness for HR-Related Litigation

With these considerations in mind, it will often make sense to hire an attorney as an expert witness—particularly in areas such as HR that are more heavily focused on the law rather than medical, engineering, architectural, or other principles. Our Founder and Managing Director, Victoria Aguilar, is not only an EEOC-certified EEO Investigator and Counselor, but also an AV Preeminent® rated attorney.

Contact HR Expert Witness Victoria Aguilar at AR Group

If you need an expert witness for HR-related litigation, we encourage you to contact us for more information. To speak with Victoria Aguilar, Founder and Managing Director of AR Group, please call 720-452-3300 or tell us how we can reach you online today.