Independent medical experts are vital to any medical negligence claim. The medical expert will be required to carefully consider all of the evidence before confirming whether, on a balance of probabilities, the care provided fell below the standard to be expected of a reasonably competent body of medical opinion within that specialism and, if so, whether the negligence resulted in an avoidable injury.
Regardless of whether the expert is instructed by a Claimant of a Defendant, their overriding duty is to the Court and each expert must provide a signed Statement of Truth within their report confirming that they have complied with their duty and provided a complete, accurate and independent report.
We will need to rely on our expert’s evidence throughout the case and ask further questions of them at various stages. If the case continues to the Court process, the expert will need to contribute to the various documents which must be served at Court and confirm their agreement with the way in which the case is pleaded.
If the case were ultimately to proceed to a final Court hearing, the expert would need to meet with the Defendant’s expert to determine whether any agreements in the evidence can be reached. If the case did proceed to Trial, the expert would most likely be called to give evidence.