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Writing and Defending Your Expert Report

Steven Babitsky, Esq. and James J. Mangraviti, Jr., Esq.

Your expert opinion is only as strong as your expert report. Opposing counsel can and will use every tactic, fair and unfair, to turn your own report against you.  A well-written report is your first and best line of defense from such attacks.  Equally important is your ability to recognize counsel’s tactics and neutralize them.  Writing and Defending Your Expert Report: The Step-by-Step Guide with Models is the seminal work on how to craft and confidently and expertly defend your expert report.  This required resource for all experts will teach you:

-         numerous techniques on how to write a powerful, persuasive and defensible report

-         how much retaining counsel can assist you in writing your report

-         the superfluous information and dangerous language that should be left out of your report

-         advanced techniques to defend against 40 of counsel’s most devastating tactics used to attack you through your report

-         legal requirements regarding Rule 26 expert reports and reports used in summary judgment motions, and

-         the techniques used by a dozen leading experts to write and defend an expert report.

Experts who write reports need to read this book.   

Here's What Your Colleagues Have to Say:

  • “Comprehensive, meticulously detailed and eminently practical. Bristling with lists, examples both model and horrible, caveats, pitfalls and key words. A classic of its kind.  Most valuable are the hair-raising transcript excerpts.”  
    Thomas G Gutheil, MD Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

  • “Clear, concise, and comprehensive!  A must read.”  Daniel Pacheco, P.E.

  • “…the rarest of legal works…fulfills a real need…organized in a user friendly format set forth in clear and graceful English.”  
    William C. Lanham, Esq.

  • “Simply phenomenal!! It would take an expert of many years to discover all these pearls for her/himself…on second thought, you simply couldn’t come up with all this valuable information without this book.” 
     
    Malin Dollinger, MD

  • “A great resource for professionals!”  
    Martha Sorensen, Ph.D

  • “Learn the hard way or just read this.”  
    Jerome H. Poliacoff, Ph.D

  • “An essential resource for any expert,  novice and veteran.”  
    Vince Gallagher

  • “Read It!!”  
    Ken MacKenzie, MCBA, FIBA, MBA

About The Authors:  Steven Babitsky and James J. Mangraviti, Jr. are the nation’s leading and most prolific authors and trainers on expert witness issues.  They are both former trial lawyers whose past texts include:  How To Excel During Cross-Examination: Techniques for Experts that Work,  How To Excel During Depositions: Techniques for Experts that Work, and The Comprehensive Forensic Services Manual: The Essential Resources for all Experts.  Attorneys Babitsky and Mangraviti have trained thousands of experts on the skills needed to be more effective and better assist the trier of fact.

CONTENTS 

CHAPTER 1  INTRODUCTION    

  • 1.1 WHY COUNSEL MAY WANT A WRITTEN REPORT      

  • 1.2 THE IMPORTANCE OF A WELL-WRITTEN REPORT      

  • 1.3 THE GOLDEN RULE OF EXPERT REPORT WRITING     

  • 1.4 LEGAL REQUIREMENTS    

  • 1.5 WORKING WITH COUNSEL    

  • 1.6 FORMATTING AND PROOFING  

  • 1.7 DISCLOSURE OF DOCUMENTS REVIEWED  

  • 1.8 QUALIFICATIONS OF THE EXPERT         

  • 1.9 EXPRESSING FACTUAL ASSUMPTIONS   

  • 1.10 THE IMPORTANCE OF STAYING WITHIN THE EXPERT’S TRUE AREA OF EXPERTISE   

  • 1.11 STATING OPINIONS   

  • 1.12 THE IMPORTANCE OF RESEARCH   

  • 1.13 THE WELL-WRITTEN EXPERT REPORT      

  • 1.14 WHAT NOT TO INCLUDE IN AN EXPERT REPORT      

  • 1.15 DEFENDING THE EXPERT REPORT      

  • 1.16 HELP FROM COLLEAGUES       

CHAPTER 2  DISCOVERABILITY OF EXPERT REPORTS AND RELATED MATERIAL  

  • 2.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 2.2 ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE  

  • 2.3 WORK PRODUCT PROTECTION        

  • 2.4 NON TESTIFYING EXPERTS       

  • 2.5 TESTIFYING EXPERTS       

  • 2.6 ORAL AND DRAFT REPORTS    

CHAPTER 3  LEGAL REQUIREMENTS: RULE 26 REPORTS, REPORTS USED IN SUMMARY MOTIONS, AND MAGIC WORDS        

  • 3.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 3.2 RULE 26       

  • 3.3 SUPPLEMENTAL RULE  26 REPORTS

  • 3.4 REPORTS USED TO SUPPORT OR OPPOSE MOTIONS FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT   

  • 3.5 TIMELINESS

  • 3.6 REQUIREMENTS UNDER STATE LAW  

CHAPTER 4  PREPARATION OF REPORTS AND THE ASSISTANCE OF COUNSEL    

  • 4.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 4.2 VULNERABILITY ON CROSS-EXAMINATION     

  • 4.3 LEGAL REQUIREMENTS OF RULE 26       

CHAPTER 5  FORMATTING     

  • 5.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 5.2 COVER PAGE 

  • 5.3 FONT 

  • 5.4 TOPIC HEADINGS   

  • 5.5 SHORT, CONCISE PARAGRAPHS      

  • 5.6 SPACING     

  • 5.7 PAGE NUMBERING           

  • 5.8 INCLUDE AN EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 5.9 SUMMARY JUDGMENT REPORTS IN THE FORM OF AFFIDAVIT

CHAPTER 6  PROPERLY DISCLOSING PRECISE DOCUMENTS REVIEWED  

  • 6.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 6.2 THOROUGHNESS 

  • 6.3 NUMBERING LISTS 

  • 6.4 “INCLUDING” AND “INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO”    

  • 6.5 “RELEVANT PORTIONS OF”    

  • 6.6 “VARIOUS”  

  • 6.7 MISSING RECORDS AND DOCUMENTS NOT REVIEWED  

  • 6.8 ADDITIONAL EXAMPLES  

CHAPTER 7  STATING THE EXPERT’S QUALIFICATIONS ACCURATELY AND OBJECTIVELY      

  • 7.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 7.2 LEGAL REQUIREMENTS    

  • 7.3 ACCURACY

  • 7.4 OBJECTIVITY        

  • 7.5 UNEARNED DESIGNATIONS OR DEGREES    

  • 7.6 KNOWLEDGE OF LITERATURE         

CHAPTER 8  HOW TO BEST EXPRESS AND DOCUMENT DETAILED AND SPECIFIC FACTUAL ASSUMPTIONS      

  • 8.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 8.2 PROVIDE DETAILED AND SPECIFIC INFORMATION     

  • 8.3 CITATIONS TO INFORMATION SOURCE      

  • 8.4 DO NOT GUESS ABOUT THE FACTS         

  • 8.5 INCORRECT FACTUAL ASSUMPTIONS   

  • 8.6 DATES         

  • 8.7 RELIABILITY OF DATA AND INFORMATION     

  • 8.8 ILLEGIBLE RECORDS    

  • 8.9 INFORMATION SUPPLIED BY RETAINING COUNSEL    

CHAPTER 9  THE IMPORTANCE OF STAYING WITHIN ONE’S TRUE AREA OF EXPERTISE 

  • 9.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 9.2 BEYOND AREA OF EXPERTISE   

  • 9.3 LEGAL TERMS         

  • 9.4 COSTS, VALUE, MONEY        

CHAPTER 10  STATING OPINIONS AND CONCLUSIONS IN A DEFENSIBLE MANNER 

  • 10.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 10.2 STATE OPINIONS CLEARLY AND WITH CONFIDENCE         

  • 10.3 STATE REASONS FOR OPINIONS   

  • 10.4 NET OPINIONS   

  • 10.5 FAILURE TO DISCLOSE FACT/EXPERIMENT IN REPORT      

  • 10.6 STATE ALL OPINIONS TO WHICH EXPERT WILL TESTIFY      

  • 10.7 CONCLUSORY STATEMENTS         

  • 10.8 VAGUE, EQUIVOCAL, AND UNCERTAIN REPORTS INADMISSIBLE    

  • 10.9 DOCUMENTING A RELIABLE METHODOLOGY   

CHAPTER 11  HOW TO USE CITATIONS TO TEXTS, GUIDELINES, CODES, ARTICLES, AND OTHER AUTHORITY TO BOLSTER A REPORT’S CREDIBILITY         

  • 11.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 11.2 CITING AUTHORITY PROPERLY 

  • 11.3 CONSEQUENCES OF FAILURE TO CITE AUTHORITY SPECIFICALLY      

  • 11. 4 DATED AUTHORITY           

  • 11.5 QUOTING AUTHORITY           

  • 11.6 AUTHORITATIVE   

CHAPTER 12  MAKING YOUR REPORT POWERFUL, PERSUASIVE, AND UNDERSTANDABLE       

  • 12.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 12.2 STATE THINGS CLEARLY AND DIRECTLY    

  • 12.3 DO NOT GUESS         

  • 12.4 GUESSING ABOUT COSTS, VALUE, AND MONEY

  • 12.5 AVOID BOILERPLATE LANGUAGE 

  • 12.6 AVOID ABSOLUTE WORDS         

  • 12.7 AVOID VAGUE, EQUIVOCAL, AND UNCERTAIN REPORTS    

  • 12.8 DO NOT USE EMPHASIS WHEN EXPRESSING FINDINGS OR CONCLUSIONS      

  • 12.9 USE ACTIVE VOICE           

  • 12.9 USE PRECISE LANGUAGE 

  • 12.10 USE FIRST-PERSON SINGULAR    

  • 12.11 USE CONFIDENT LANGUAGE AND AVOID HEDGE WORDS         

  • 12.12 DEFINE TECHNICAL TERMS AND JARGON     

  • 12.13 USE OBJECTIVE LANGUAGE 

  • 12.14 EXPLAIN EXPLICITLY THE MEANING OF ABBREVIATIONS  

  • 12.15 AVOID ARGUMENTATIVE LANGUAGE 

  • 12.16 BEWARE OF COMMENTING ON THE CREDIBILITY OF WITNESSES

  • 12.17 MAINTAIN CONSISTENCY IN AND AMONGST REPORTS    

  • 12.18 AVOID REPORTS THAT APPEAR BIASED OR PARTISAN   

CHAPTER 13  DAMAGING SUPERFLUOUS LANGUAGE AND INFORMATION THAT SHOULD NOT BE INCLUDED IN EXPERT REPORTS     

  • 13.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 13.2 “FRIENDLY” LANGUAGE DIRECTED AT COUNSEL    

  • 13.3 SPEECHES    

  • 13.4 LETTERHEAD        

  • 13.5 COVER LETTERS      

  • 3.6 DISCUSSIONS WITH RETAINING COUNSEL    

  • 13.7 ADDITIONAL EXAMPLES OF SUPERFLUOUS LANGUAGE 

CHAPTER 14  RED-FLAG WORDS TO AVOID          

  • 14.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 14.2 AUTHORITATIVE   

  • 14.3 “LEGAL” OR “LEGALLY”  

  • 14.4 “DRAFT”       

  • 14.5 “WORK PRODUCT,” “CONFIDENTIAL,” OR “PRIVILEGED”       

  • 14.6 “PROBABLE” AND “POSSIBLE” 

  • 14.7 “SUBSTANTIALLY”

  • 14.8 “OBVIOUS”  

  • 14.9 “APPEARS”

  • 14.10 “PRESUMABLY”

  • 14.11 “EVIDENTLY”

  • 14.12 “SUPPOSEDLY”

  • 14.13 “IS SAID” 

  • 14.14 “HE,” “SHE,” “IT,” “THEY,” AND OTHER PRONOUNS

  • 14.15 ROYAL “WE”  

  • 14.16 “IT SEEMS,” “COULD,” “APPARENTLY,” “I BELIEVE,” AND OTHER HEDGE WORDS         

  • 14.17 “CLEARLY” AND “OBVIOUSLY”       

  • 14.18 “COMPLETE,” “THOROUGH,” “METICULOUS,” “EXHAUSTIVE,” AND OTHER SUCH WORDS         

CHAPTER 15  PROOFREADING FOR MISTAKES  

  • 15.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 15.2 SUBSTANTIVE MISTAKES    

  • 15.3 BAD GRAMMAR  

  • 15.4 TYPOGRAPHICAL ERRORS      

  • 15.5 SPELLING    

  • 15.6 RUN-ON SENTENCES 

CHAPTER 16 DEFEATING COUNSEL’S TACTICS      

  • 16.1 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   

  • 16.2 TACTICS

Writing and Defending Your Expert Report

SKU S1-892904-21-7

$99.95