Thursday, September 17, 2009

You Need More Than an Expert

I frequently receive email requests for expert witnesses in a given case, in a given town. The basis of the request is that if one has the right expert, the case is done. This is simply not the case. While having the right expert is an essential part of any case, it is only part of the puzzle.

Most targeted parents in PA cases have literally boxes of evidence in the form of emails, letters, recordings, etc. However, what most fail to grasp is that even the most voluminous box of the best evidence is basically worthless unless it is properly assembled so as to assist in the telling of the story of your case to the Court (Judge). It is the story that moves the Judge, not the boxes of evidence. The boxes of evidence operates more like the set in a play. It contributes to the story, but does not tell it.

The telling of the story in a way that causes the particular Judge who hears it to become moved to act in ways to take the children in question out of the situation they are in, is the goal. The evidence is the flour, eggs and milk, and the story is the recipe. Therefore, the construction of the story, the selection of specific examples with an eye to the specific audience of the Judge, is absolutely critical. In my experience, this is grossly misunderstood or under weighted in the preparation of Family Law cases involving Parental Alienation.