Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Move over, Daubert -- here’s an interesting article in the online American Medical News about states tightening up expert testimony in medical liability cases.
Florida is the latest state to pass restrictions on the use of expert witnesses in medical liability cases. Under a law signed July 1 by the governor, out-of-state physicians offering expert testimony must apply for a certificate to testify. The state medical board can discipline them if they provide deceptive testimony.
"Before, there was absolutely no accountability for what [expert witnesses] did in Florida," said Jeff Scott, general counsel for the Florida Medical Assn. With the new law, "you can't come into Florida and testify falsely and hope to get away with it."
At least 30 states have similar expert witness laws. Some statutes, such as Arizona's, require witnesses to practice in the same specialty as the physician defendant. Others, like Maryland's, mandate that doctors spend a certain amount of time actively practicing medicine