Damages experts often rely upon information supplied by client personnel when performing economic damage analyses. Such information can take a number of different forms, including, but not limited to:
While damages experts may rely on client representations and information as part of the expert engagement, it should not be done without appropriate consideration. Case law demonstrates that reliance on client-supplied information is frequently an issue subject to challenge in litigation, both with respect to admissibility of expert testimony, and the weight that should be accorded to the expert opinions regarding damages.
The cases analyzed suggest that the courts consider a number of key issues when evaluating the admissibility and weight of the expert testimony that relies upon client-supplied information, including but not limited to:
Reflecting these considerations, the cases examined demonstrate that the courts appear to prefer that damages experts:
As is typical in many matters that turn on specific facts and circumstances, cases involving the analysis of economic damages that rely upon client-supplied data do not readily lend themselves to the application of a rigid formula. Rather, as reflected in the case law surrounding challenges to the admissibility and weight accorded to expert testimony, the courts look to whether the expert has performed adequate analysis on the client-supplied data and information, including, but not limited to, the reasonableness and testability of assumptions, the qualifications of the personnel supplying the information, and whether the data was prepared in the normal course of business.
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