Independent review and analysis

Jones v Kaney

The legal press seems to be fixated with comment on the Jones v Kaney, [2011] UKSC 13, decision where after hundreds of years of expert immunity, the position was reversed. Some commentators have even predicted that the decision will lead to the end of expert witnesses as we know them. So we thought you might be interested in our view!

Believe it or not, expert witness work is not our principal business activity, as we carry out audits of all kind. We are experts in the true sense. It is the work which we have done, that we do and our experience that makes us experts in our field. Whilst we are not full time expert witnesses, we do undertake expert witness work professionally and independently. In our view, experts are meant to”get mud on their boots” and have a day job – we do.

We do not expect immunity in our day job; so why should we expect it in one specialist area of our business? We have always been passionate about our independence and have always told it “as it is”. As such we believe we have little to fear about the impact of Jones v Kaney.

However, there are some experts who should be worried. Despite the best efforts of Lord Wolfe and his historic reforms, we still come across experts who appear to think they are advocates for the party appointing them – we resist the temptation to label them as ‘hired guns’. Such experts will have to ask serious questions about their stance following this ruling. We believe some will cease to offer themselves as expert witnesses.

But, as we are sure you can guess, it is business as usual for us.

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