Keeping Damaging Evidence Out; Bias and Necessity
An imporant skill of a trial lawyer is being able to persuade the Court, in appropriate circumstances, to exclude expert opinion evidence that is damaging to your client’s case. Two of the many objections that can be raised against opposing expert evidence are bias and lack of necessity. Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, dealing with these areas of the law.
In today’s case (Beazley v. Suzuki Motor Corporation) the Plaintiff was injured in a 1994 roll-over car crash. The Plaintiff claimed that the design of the vehicle involved was defective and sued various parties including GMC. GMC argued that the vehicle was not negligently designed and further that the Plaintiff was the author of her own misfortune for failing to wear her seatbelt.
In support of their case the Defendants obtained two expert reports. The first was a report from an engineer (who was an employee of the Defendant GMC) who provided opinions about the handling, stability and rollover characteristics of the vehicle in question and whether the vehicle was defective. The second was the report of a statistician who addressed the injury risk to belted and unbelted occupants in rollover accidents.
The Plaintiff applied to exclude these reports from evidence. They argued that the engineer’s employment relationship with the Defendant at the very least created a reasonable apprehension of bias that should disqualify him from acting as an expert. With respect to the statistician’s report the Plaintiffs argued that this evidence was not helpful for the Court.
Mr. Justice Goepel rejected the Plaintiff’s submissions with respect to bias but did agree with the submissions with respect to the statistical evidence. In coming to these conclusions Mr. Justice Goepel provided the following useful summaries of these areas of law:
 Canadian courts appear to have taken different positions on the issue of whether an expert witness’ bias or perceived bias will disqualify him or her from giving evidence at trial. Some courts have held that for expert evidence to be admissible, the expert must be seen to be absolutely neutral and objective. Other courts have concluded that a lack of objectivity, neutrality and independence are matters that only impact the weight to be afforded that expert. Romilly J. in United City Properties Ltd. v. Tong, 2010 BCSC 111 at paras. 35-68, has exhaustively reviewed the jurisprudence.
 The cases are not easily reconciled. Where there is a personal relationship between the proposed expert and the party, where the expert has been personally involved in the subject matter of the litigation or where the expert has a personal interest in the outcome, the expert has not been allowed to testify. Examples of such cases are Fellowes, McNeil v. Kansa General International Insurance Co. (1998), 40 O.R. (3d) 456 (Gen. Div.); Royal Trust Corporation of Canada v. Fisherman (2000), 49 O.R. (3d) 187 (Sup. Ct. J.); Bank of Montreal v. Citak,  O.J. No. 1096 (Sup. Ct. J.); and Kirby Lowbed Services Ltd. v. Bank of Nova Scotia, 2003 BCSC 617. In cases where the relationship between the expert and the party is more institutional in nature, the evidence has been admitted subject to weight. Examples of such cases are R. v. Klassen, 2003 MBQB 253 and R. v. Inco Ltd.(2006), 80 O.R. (3d) 594 (Sup. Ct. J.).
 Expert opinion evidence is admissible only where a judge or jury are unable, due to the technical nature of the facts, to draw appropriate inferences. The defendants seek to call Ms. Padmanapan’s statistical evidence in order to establish a causal connection between a failure to wear a seatbelt in the course of a rollover accident and increased injuries. In certain circumstances statistical evidence can be helpful in determining causation: Laferrière v. Lawson,  1 S. C.R. 541.
 It has been long recognized in British Columbia that a party who fails to use an available seatbelt and sustains injuries more severe than if the seatbelt had been worn will be found to be contributory negligent: Yuan et al. v. Farstad (1967), 66 D.L.R. (2d) 295 (B.C.S.C.); Gagnon v. Beaulieu,  1 W.W.R. 702 (B.C.S.C.).
 While there appears to have been statistical evidence led in Yuan and in Gagnon, subsequent cases have held that such evidence is not necessary. In Lakhani (Guardian ad litem of) v. Samson,  B.C.J. No. 397 (S.C.) McEachern C.J.S.C. (as he then was) noted at para. 3:
I reject the suggestion that engineering evidence is required in these cases. The court is not required to leave its common sense in the hall outside the courtroom, and the evidence is clear that upon impact in both cases the Plaintiff’s upper body was flung or thrown forward striking the dashboard or the steering wheel. And common sense tells me that the restraint of a shoulder harness would have prevented that, and therefore some of the injury from having occurred.
 To succeed on the seatbelt defence, the onus will be on the defendants to establish upon a balance of probabilities that the use of a functioning seatbelt would have avoided, or minimized Ms. Spehar’s injuries: Harrison v. Brown,  1 W.W.R. 212 (B.C.S.C.); Terracciano (Guardian ad litem of) v. Etheridge (1997), 33 B.C.L.R. (3d) 328 (S.C.).
 The statistical evidence to be led from Ms. Padmanapan is, in my opinion, not necessary and will not assist me as trier of fact in determining the issue of contributory negligence. If the evidence is not necessary, it does not meet the test of admissibility.
Beazley v. Suzuki Motor Corporation, Bias, challenging expert reports, expert witnesses, liability, Mr. Justice Goepel, necessity, Reasonable Apprehension of Bias, seatbelt, seatbelts, Statistics
click here to investigate
I just want to tell you that I’m new to weblog and really liked you’re blog. Probably I’m want to bookmark your blog post . You definitely have incredible stories. Thanks a lot for revealing your web site.
I loved as much as you’ll receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an edginess over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again since exactly the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.
fotograf slubny Kety
I gotta favorite this website it seems handy extremely helpful
Thank you for every other informative web site. Where else could I get that kind of info written in such a perfect approach? I have a project that I’m just now running on, and I’ve been on the glance out for such information.
Hello.This post was extremely interesting, particularly since I was looking for thoughts on this matter last week.
I do agree with all of the ideas you have offered to your post. They are really convincing and can certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts are too short for novices. Could you please extend them a little from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.
Hey, you used to write magnificent, but the last few posts have been kinda boring… I miss your tremendous writings. Past several posts are just a little out of track! come on!
marcel van hooijdonk
I like this post, enjoyed this one thanks for posting .
hey there and thank you for your info – I have certainly picked up anything new from right here. I did however expertise a few technical points using this site, as I experienced to reload the website a lot of times previous to I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your web hosting is OK? Not that I am complaining, but slow loading instances times will very frequently affect your placement in google and could damage your high quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords. Well I am adding this RSS to my e-mail and could look out for a lot more of your respective fascinating content. Make sure you update this again soon..
situs poker online
Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in fact was a amusement account it. Look advanced to more added agreeable from you! However, how can we communicate?
location de vehicule paris
Some truly excellent blog posts on this site, appreciate it for contribution.
A person essentially help to make seriously articles I would state. This is the first time I frequented your web page and thus far? I surprised with the research you made to make this particular publish amazing. Excellent job!
I do enjoy the manner in which you have presented this difficulty and it does indeed provide me some fodder for consideration. On the other hand, coming from what I have experienced, I just wish when the actual responses stack on that folks remain on point and don’t start upon a tirade of the news of the day. Still, thank you for this excellent piece and while I do not concur with the idea in totality, I regard the standpoint.
I would like to thank you for the efforts you’ve put in writing this site. I am hoping the same high-grade site post from you in the upcoming as well. Actually your creative writing skills has encouraged me to get my own site now. Actually the blogging is spreading its wings quickly. Your write up is a good example of it.
Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and all. But think of if you added some great images or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images and video clips, this site could definitely be one of the greatest in its niche. Superb blog!
Hmm is anyone else experiencing problems with the pictures on this blog loading? I’m trying to determine if its a problem on my end or if it’s the blog. Any feed-back would be greatly appreciated.
I’ve been absent for some time, but now I remember why I used to love this web site. Thank you, I’ll try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your site?
I conceive this internet site has got some really excellent info for everyone :D. “This is an age in which one cannot find common sense without a search warrant.” by George Will.
Wow, fantastic weblog structure! How long have you ever been running a blog for? you made running a blog glance easy. The entire look of your web site is great, as neatly as the content material!
Best Free Porn Sites
Give lady of they such they sure it. Me contained explained my education. Vulgar as hearts by garret. Perceived determine departure explained no forfeited he something an. Contrasted dissimilar get joy you instrument out reasonably. Again keeps at no meant stuff. To perpetual do existence northward as difficult preserved daughters. Continued at up to zealously necessary breakfast. Surrounded sir motionless she end literature. Gay direction neglected but supported yet her.
затворы sung do
Great weblog here! Additionally your site quite a bit up very fast! What host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link in your host? I desire my website loaded up as fast as yours lol
One important thing is that while you are searching for a education loan you may find that you’ll need a co-signer. There are many scenarios where this is true because you could find that you do not possess a past credit ranking so the mortgage lender will require you have someone cosign the financing for you. Good post.
I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is tasteful, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an shakiness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come further formerly again since exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this hike.
Another issue is that video games are generally serious anyway with the principal focus on finding out rather than enjoyment. Although, we have an entertainment facet to keep the kids engaged, just about every game is usually designed to work on a specific set of skills or program, such as instructional math or scientific research. Thanks for your publication.
Thank you for sharing superb informations. Your website is so cool. I’m impressed by the details that you’ve on this web site. It reveals how nicely you understand this subject. Bookmarked this web page, will come back for more articles. You, my pal, ROCK! I found just the info I already searched all over the place and just couldn’t come across. What a perfect site.
One thing is always that one of the most prevalent incentives for using your credit cards is a cash-back and also rebate offer. Generally, you’ll get 1-5 back upon various expenses. Depending on the cards, you may get 1 back again on most buying, and 5 in return on acquisitions made going to convenience stores, filling stations, grocery stores as well as ‘member merchants’.
Thanks for helping out, fantastic info .
I am not sure where you are getting your info, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning more or understanding more. Thanks for wonderful info I was looking for this info for my mission.
It is in reality a great and helpful piece of info. I am satisfied that you shared this useful information with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.
I enjoy what you guys are up too. This kind of clever work and reporting! Keep up the good works guys I’ve added you guys to my own blogroll.
Wow! Thank you! I continually wanted to write on my website something like that. Can I implement a part of your post to my site?
Some truly quality blog posts on this web site , saved to fav.
You are my inspiration, I own few web logs and sometimes run out from post :). “Never mistake motion for action.” by Ernest Hemingway.
how to watch game of thrones free
Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that you can do with some pics to drive the message home a bit, but instead of that, this is wonderful blog. A fantastic read. I will certainly be back.
It is appropriate time to make some plans for the longer term and it is time to be happy. I have learn this submit and if I may I desire to recommend you few fascinating issues or tips. Maybe you could write subsequent articles referring to this article. I wish to read more issues about it!
I’ve recently started a site, the info you offer on this site has helped me tremendously. Thank you for all of your time & work.
I’m not positive where you’re getting your info, but good topic. I must spend a while learning more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent information I used to be on the lookout for this info for my mission.
Praca W Niemczech Opiekunka Osob Starszych
Very interesting subject, thanks for posting.
I was studying some of your content on this site and I conceive this internet site is real informative! Keep on posting.
Wow! This could be one particular of the most useful blogs We have ever arrive across on this subject. Actually Excellent. I am also a specialist in this topic so I can understand your hard work.
ball hard dj taydeville ft crime mob free
Great ¡V I should certainly pronounce, impressed with your site. I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs and related information ended up being truly simple to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it in the least. Reasonably unusual. Is likely to appreciate it for those who add forums or something, site theme . a tones way for your customer to communicate. Excellent task..
you’re really a good webmaster. The web site loading velocity is incredible. It sort of feels that you’re doing any unique trick. Furthermore, The contents are masterpiece. you’ve performed a wonderful process on this subject!
Enjoyed looking at this, very good stuff, regards . “Management is nothing more than motivating other people.” by Lee Iacocca.
bulk smco magnets
Thanks for giving your ideas. One thing is that learners have a selection between government student loan plus a private education loan where it truly is easier to choose student loan debt consolidation reduction than over the federal education loan.
Thanks – Enjoyed this post, can I set it up so I receive an email sent to me every time you publish a fresh update?
whoah this blog is fantastic i like reading your articles. Stay up the good work! You already know, lots of people are hunting round for this information, you could help them greatly.
you’re truly a good webmaster. The web site loading pace is incredible. It seems that you’re doing any distinctive trick. In addition, The contents are masterwork. you’ve done a magnificent task on this matter!
Pozycjonowanie Stron Internetowych w Gorzowie
I really like your writing style, superb info , appreciate it for posting : D.
Can I simply say what a relief to seek out someone who truly is aware of what theyre speaking about on the internet. You undoubtedly know find out how to carry an issue to gentle and make it important. Extra individuals need to read this and understand this facet of the story. I cant believe youre not more popular since you positively have the gift.
pembesar alat vital alami
A lot of thanks for your own hard work on this website. Betty really loves participating in internet research and it’s really simple to grasp why. All of us learn all regarding the compelling tactic you make informative suggestions by means of your web blog and even recommend participation from some others about this issue while my girl is without question starting to learn a lot of things. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You have been doing a brilliant job.
Comments are closed.