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Do I need an expert witness in a Texas medical malpractice case?

Painter Law Firm's frequently asked question (FAQ) series

Some types of lawsuits don’t require expert witnesses. Basic personal injury cases and some contract or business disputes can often get to a jury without expert testimony.

In cases like medical malpractice, where the issues aren’t within the normal understanding and experience of jurors, Texas law requires expert testimony to aid the jury.

In medical malpractice lawsuits, Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code Chapter 74 requires:

• An expert witness with education, knowledge and experience directly related to the alleged negligence. For a claim against a doctor, there must be physician expert testimony. For a case against a nurse, the expert testimony can come from a nurse.

• All medical malpractice cases require a licensed physician to offer expert testimony regarding proximate causation. Even if the lawsuit is against a nurse and hospital (no physician is named), a plaintiff will still need a doctor to explain how the alleged errors or sub-standard care were a foreseeable substantial factor in leading to the plaintiff’s injury.

Some cases may only require one medical expert, while others may need multiple experts. An experienced, competent Texas medical malpractice lawyer knows how to balance the legal demands and standards with not over-spending on overlapping experts that run up case expenses.

Robert Painter is an award-winning medical malpractice attorney at Painter Law Firm PLLC, in Houston, Texas. He is a former hospital administrator who represents patients and family members in medical negligence and wrongful death lawsuits all over Texas. Contact him by calling 281-580-8800 or emailing him right now.

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