February 04, 2014

In this article, Jenner & Block Partners Debbie L. Berman and Michael L. Cebula examine how judicial admissions can affect the use of expert witness testimony.  The authors explain the power of judicial admissions: unlike evidentiary admissions, they may not be contradicted by the party or its witnesses.  They offer a step-by-step guide on how attorneys can identify and respond to judicial admissions in the context of contradictory expert testimony.  They conclude that “during discovery, lawyers should prospectively and retrospectively keep watch for instances when a party arguably makes a deliberate, clear, and unequivocal statement about a concrete fact within his or her personal knowledge that the party’s expert contradicts. Having the opposing party’s statement treated as a judicial admission may limit or prohibit an expert’s testimony and could cause your opponent’s case to crash and burn.”