In court, expert witnesses can play a key role in a trial. However, there are some things that they should not be allowed to speak on. In the case of Aillones v. Minton, Aillones filed a negligence claim against Minton alleging that Aillones injuries during a car crash were because of Minton and that Minton was at fault. Aillones was treated by a nurse practitioner and during the deposition, Minton’s counsel objected to testimony by the nurse practitioner regarding whether Aillones injuries were caused by the accident. Aillones then filed a motion asking the trial court to qualify the nurse practitioner as an expert witness. The trial court denied the motion and Aillones would appeal the decision to the Indiana Court of Appeals.
The Indiana Court of Appeals held that typically a nurse practitioner would have sufficient knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education to testify as an expert witness. However, the Court said that this particular nurse practitioner could not testify that Aillones’ injuries were caused by the crash because the nurse practitioner was not a witness to the car crash itself. The Court held that while the nurse practitioner may not testify that Aillones’ injuries were proximately caused by the crash, he may testify whether, in his expert opinion, Aillones’ injuries were consistent with injuries from a crash. The Court reasoned that this is the purpose of having medical expert witnesses in trial. Not to attest to a particular accident, but to give their expert opinion on how these injuries typically occur consistent with their experience and knowledge.
If you or a loved one have been affected by an accident or death, contact an experienced personal injury attorney at Hurst Limontes, LLC. We have decades of combined experience fighting for our clients in any number of personal injury claims. Call 317-636-0808 or email us for a FREE and confidential consultation.