The circumstances surrounding divorce are as unique as the individuals involved. While one couple may approach it as the end of a business partnership, others end up in court because the two sides cannot agree on one or several important issues. If there are disagreements, it may be necessary to use an expert witness to either provide knowledgeable information to a judge or strengthen a case during the discovery process.
These experts have specialized knowledge, which they use to analyze an issue and offer an informed opinion. These professionals can be expensive, depending upon the work, but their testimony or findings can have a tremendous impact on the outcome of the case.
Commonly used expert witnesses in divorce
Experts’ backgrounds will be varied, but common examples often seen in divorces are:
Financial: Forensic accountants can investigate a spouse if there is suspicion of hiding assets, or to trace separate property funds, which funds are not divisible in a Texas divorce.
Real estate or other assets: These experts put a monetary value on businesses, real property, art collections, jewelry or objects of value.
Vocational: These look at the career of a provider to determine how much they earn, or to provide analysis of a potential career unfulfilled because a spouse stopped to raise a family.
Family therapy or child psychology: These experts will interview the children and other family members to render (theoretically) unbiased analysis of the home life, particularly when there are disputes about parental suitability or accusations of abuse.
When to use them
Typically, expert witnesses are used for important issues involving division of assets, maintenance, or child custody. Depending upon the details of a case, an Experienced Board-Certified Family Law expert attorney who works in Collin County, Dallas County, Denton County or elsewhere throughout Texas can work with clients to determine if or which expert witnesses would be useful in strengthening a case and if the findings are worth the expense of hiring them.