In a personal injury motor vehicle accident lawsuit, is is necessary that the treating doctors testify as to your injuries?
Any expert witnesses required?
4 attorney answers
It's not necessary to have treating physicians, but not having testify makes your case extremely difficult to win. The only option other than having treating physicians is having a paid expert come in and the jury would know that the expert is paid, making them think he might only be saying what he's saying because he's being paid.
It is not necessary that the "treating" physician testify; however, you must have a doctor that is a qualified expert in the medical field testify as to the injuries. The layperson, injured party will not be qualified to render expert opinion as to his or her injuries. In "limitation on lawsuit option" or "verbal threshold" cases, which form a great number of the litigated auto crash cases in this State, you will need a medical expert to testify so as to meet your burden of proof on the injury threshold.
You will need expert medical testimony about your injuries but it does not have to be from your treating physician or physicians. There are experts who are frequently retained by attorneys to examine a person who has been injured, to write a narrative report for their case and to be available to testify at trial, if the case cannot be settled. If you are subject to the verbal threshold, you will have to have a treating physician sign a two page Certification which would state that you sustained a significant injury in the accident, but they do not need to testify at trial, if you have a different medical expert who will testify about your injuries.
This is why such lawsuits have a much higher percentage of success when you hire a lawyer to handle it.
This should not be considered legal advice and is intended for educational purposes only. It does not constitute a contract for legal services between any parties. Answers are given to questions for which there may be additional facts not mentioned which might change the legal issues or consequences.