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2020 Divorce Statistics For The State Of Michigan

How Are Expert Witnesses Used in a Divorce?

Many divorce cases never make it to a court trial. Whether spouses come up with a mutually acceptable agreement for the division of their assets, spousal support, and child custody, or if they work through issues with legal guidance and the help of a mediator, they’ll often simply submit their agreement(s) to the court for approval.

That said, you may be in a contentious divorce, one where you and your spouse simply cannot reach a compromise.

Whether you’re butting heads over who should keep the family home, dealing with a situation in which one of you thinks the other is unfit to parent, or experiencing circumstances that require additional financial support (such as caring for a child with special needs), you may need of an expert witness who can bolster your case.

Types of Expert Witnesses

Expert witnesses may have knowledge and experience related to nearly any field. In a divorce case, specifically, the following kinds of witnesses are often called upon to give an opinion on financial matters, medical questions, or other legal concerns:

Financial Experts

When it comes to issues like the division of assets, you might worry that your spouse is attempting to hide their assets.

In response, an expert financial witness, like a certified public accountant or forensic accountant, may be called upon to review any involved assets and accounts in search of the truth, which will then be reported to the court to help settle the matter.

Medical Experts

There are several instances in which medical professionals may be called in to testify in a divorce case: They may have to attest to a medical condition that makes one spouse unable to work, impacting spousal support payments, or they might be asked to review whether a medical condition renders a parent unable to effectively care for children.

Medical experts might also work with children to help determine whether a certain custody arrangement is in their best interests or if they require additional medical care that increases a spouse’s child support payments.

Private Investigators

In a divorce case where one spouse suspects the other is involved in some form of fraud, a private investigator may be hired to uncover deception. For example, one spouse might quit their job to avoid alimony payments but then claim the job loss was beyond their control. An investigator will try to find evidence against that claim to support your case.

Possible Outcomes

It’s important to understand that expert witnesses generally aren’t brought in to advise the court; they simply review facts and offer an opinion based on their knowledge and experience.

Expert testimony is limited to a specific field of inquiry, and although it may very well impact a particular issue, it’s unlikely to affect other areas of the divorce proceedings or the overall outcome of the divorce.

With that said, if you’re going through a contentious divorce and you need legal support and guidance, the experienced team at Gucciardo Family Law is here to help. Contact us now to schedule a free consultation.

Too much information?

We focus exclusively on family law matters so we are always available to answer your questions and help.

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