Volume 34, Issue 3 (May 1989)
Evidentiary and Procedural Rules Governing Expert Testimony
Expert testimony plays a critical role in criminal litigation. The legal system has developed both evidentiary and procedural rules to govern the use of experts. The rules of evidence specify the conditions under which expert testimony may be admitted at trial and thus considered by the trier of fact. The rules of procedure cover related issues, such as pretrial discovery of scientific reports and the appointment of defense experts. This article explains and critiques these legal rules. The concluding section recommends ways in which these rules can be improved.