Testifying and Forensic Report Writing Skills for Civil Engineers

 Topics CoveredSeminar Benefits | Learning Outcomes | Registration Information | Summary Outline

How To Excel as an Expert Witness

Upcoming Seminar Locations:

Orlando, FL / November 4-5, 2013 (Hotel Info

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Steven Babitsky, Esq., J.D. 

Each Attendee Earns 1.4 CEUs

“This was one of the best seminars I have ever attended. There were great examples of cross-examination and practical information for use when someone is deposed or on trial. The mock trials were very informative. The instructor was very knowledgeable and provided good practical experience and examples for expert witnesses.” – Franco Balassone, Vice President, STV Inc., East Hartford, CT

Purpose and Background

Civil engineers are constantly being called upon to serve as expert witnesses and draft reports for attorneys and insurers.  (Read More)  

Topics Covered 

  • How to “Bullet-Proof” Your CV with demonstrations
  • Preparing to Testify
  • Testifying at Depositions: Special Techniques with demonstrations
  • Fee Setting, Billing and Collections
  • Marketing Your Forensic Practice
  • Direct Testimony: Persuading the Jury with demonstrations
  • Cross-Examination: Bending not Breaking with demonstrations
  • Legal Requirements of Forensic Engineering Reports
  • Properly Expressing Your Expert Findings and Conclusions
  • Drafting a Powerful, Defensible Forensic Engineering Report
  • Defending Your Forensic Report During Cross-Examination
  • Avoiding Abuse as an Expert Witness
  • Trick Questions and Trial Tactics with demonstrations

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 Seminar Benefits and Learning Outcomes

  • Learn how to qualify as a civil engineering expert
  • Draft greatly improved forensic reports for attorneys and adjusters
  • Explore effective techniques for negotiating compensation that reflects your specialized knowledge
  • Gain necessary expert witnessing experience by participating in the numerous demonstrations
  • Increase your understanding of the civil litigation process, especially the proper role of an expert witness and why lawyers act the way they do when dealing with experts
  • Learn how to build a premier forensic practice
  • Make your CV as resistant as possible to cross-examination
  • Enhance your fee setting, billing, and collection procedures
  • Better communicate with and persuade the judge and jury
  • More comfortably handle cross-examination
  • Understand what attorneys are really looking for from you
  • Be able to cost-effectively and professionally market your services
  • Learn to defend your report during cross-examination
  • Avoid ethical problems
  • Master deposition skills
  • Much, much more

Assessment of Learning Outcomes

Students’ achievement of the learning outcomes will be assessed through a series of problem-solving design exercises, class discussion following the presentation of each major topic, and through short case studies.

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Who Should Attend?

This seminar is designed for all civil engineers who are, or will become, involved in litigation support, who serve as expert witnesses, and/or would like to more effectively deal with attorneys. Civil engineers who attend will enhance their success as an expert witness and consultant and will be best positioned to develop a highly successful forensic practice.

Registration Fees*  

$1,255 Member | $1,475 Non-Member  

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Summary Outline

Time:  8:30am – 4:30pm

  • How to Bullet Proof Your CV
    – Common mistakes in CVs and how to avoid them
    – How counsel can use your CV to discredit you
    – Demonstrations
  • Preparing to Testify
    – Preparing for depositions
    – Preparing for trial
  • Testifying at Deposition: Special Techniques
    – Why depositions are taken
    – The different types of depositions
    – How deposition testimony differs from trial testimony
    – The special techniques needed to excel during depositions
    – Demonstrations
  • Fee Setting, Billing & Collections
    – How to properly set your fee
    – What to charge for
    – How to collect your fee
  • Marketing
    – Professional, cost-effective, proven methods
    – Avoiding a marketing backlash
  • Direct Testimony: Persuading the Jury
    – Advanced communication and persuasion techniques
    – Demonstrations
  • Cross-Examination: Bending, not Breaking
    – The goals of opposing counsel during cross-examination
    – Defeating opposing counsel’s tactics
    – Demonstrations
  • Legal Requirements for Forensic Engineering Reports
    – Summary judgment reports
    – Rule 26 reports
  • Properly Expressing Your Expert Findings and Conclusions
    – Use of “magic words”
    – How to best document supporting reasons
    – Making the report legally sufficient
  • Drafting a Powerful, Defensible Forensic Engineering Report
    – Red flag words and superfluous language to avoid
    – 20 additional advanced techniques
  • Defending Your Forensic Engineering Report During Cross-Examination
    – Defeating Counsel’s Tactics
    – Demonstrations
  • Avoiding Abuse as a Civil Engineering Expert
    – Invasive and abusive questioning
    – Late or non-payment of fee
    – Attempts to “steal” your opinion by subpoenaing you as a fact witness
  • Trick Questions and Trial Tactics
    – How to answer the most difficult trick and difficult questions
    – Demonstrations

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Purpose and Background

Civil engineers are constantly being called upon to serve as expert witnesses and draft reports for attorneys and insurers. In order to excel as a civil engineering expert witness you need to understand what the attorneys on both sides of the case are looking for, the law governing the litigation process, how to clearly and effectively present your sworn testimony, and how to draft and defend your forensic report. Testifying and Forensic Report Writing Skills for Civil Engineers provides comprehensive training for both the novice and the experienced civil engineering expert witness.

Testifying and Forensic Report Writing Skills for Civil Engineers is a dynamic, interactive course specially designed for civil engineers. This is a practical, hands-on program which emphasizes your participation in trial and deposition testimony demonstrations. Attendees will even have the opportunity to have their actual CV or forensic report critiqued by the faculty and to be cross-examined on it.

The course is taught by experienced trial attorneys and emphasizes practical solutions to the numerous challenges that develop when civil engineers are called upon to serve as an expert witness or draft a forensic report. All your expert witness and forensic report writing questions and concerns will be dealt with at this unique customized program.

Hotel Information

Discounted hotel rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis. See discount deadline and rates for each hotel below.

NOVEMBER 4-5, 2013
Wyndham Lake Buena Vista
1850 Hotel Plaza Blvd
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Phone: 407-828-4444
ASCE Hotel Rate: $109 Single/Double
Hotel Cut-Off: 10/3/2013

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Seminar Benefits | Learning Outcomes | Registration Information | Summary Outline