On 9 November 2012, the Senior Presiding Judge, Lord Justice Goldring, gave a speech to the Bond Solon Annual Expert Witness Conference. He outlined topical issues surrounding the use of expert evidence in trials – such as the use of expert evidence in cases where it could be argued that it is not required, the substantial increase in the cost of litigation caused by inclusion of expert evidence, the use of too many expert witnesses in one case, and recent concerns about quality of some expert evidence.

Goldring used the recent UKSC example of Jones v Kaney [2011] UKSC 13 to illustrate the extent of an expert’s duty to the court:

Lord Brown (in Jones v Kaney) observed that potential liability for negligence in relation to their evidence would render experts more circumspect in their views and in how they advance them to their clients. This would increase the expert’s ability to assist the court in fairly determining proceedings and finding the truth.”

 Figures of the cost of expert evidence in publicly funded trials were provided – in 2011 the Legal Services Commission spent £160 million on experts. A rumour that the introduction of hourly rates for experts had led to padding out of hours was addressed, amongst other subjects that must have been difficult to broach, considering the crowd. A full transcript of Lord Justice Goldring’s speech is available here.