As you become more senior in the ranks of the profession, you may be flattered one day to receive a letter or phone call from a law firm seeking your opinion as an expert anaesthetist. Be very careful before you say yes. There is a whole body of law about expert evidence. A blunder can ruin your standing and good name.

Your duty as an expert is to the Court, not the party who is paying you. Your role as an expert is to assist the court to understand technical and complex professional matters that would not be within the scope of a jury or a judge to understand without your help. Your other important duty is to assist the court to establish the standard of care.

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