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Oct 4, 2021

Thinking about a career as an  expert witness but now quite sure how to get started? Or perhaps you already have a side gig in this line of work but you want to up your game. In this episode we chat with Amal Mattu, MD who is an expert at being an expert witness. He shares pearls of wisdom including what inspires him to do this, how he does it, and why you should remain nice even when it’s getting heated in the courtroom.  Our second conversation is with Rich Orman, JD who has years of experience working with expert witnesses as a trial attorney. He gives his perspective on the mistakes expert physicians make and teaches us that preparation is the key to success.


Guest Bios: 

Amal Mattu, MD is a professor of emergency medicine at the University of Maryland. He's known worldwide for his expertise in educating on emergency cardiology issues as well as his medical legal expertise and experience. 

Rich Orman, JD spent nearly three decades as a trial lawyer, working across the spectrum of practice types - public defender, private practice, and most recently as Senior Chief Deputy District Attorney in Colorado's 18th judicial district.


We Discuss:


  • What inspires Amal to be an expert witness and why he usually works for the defense [1:59];
  • How to review a chart [6:20];
  • Reimbursement strategies and keeping track of hours [08:37];
  • How being involved in court cases influences what you say in a podcast or teach publicly [10:00];
  • The fact that medicine is not as clear cut as attorneys make it out to be [10:00];
  • Why you should be even-keeled and nice when you’re on the stand and things get heated [13:55];
  • The steps to getting started with med-mal work [18:30];
  • The importance of knowing clinical policies and guidelines for your specialty (because they’ll be brought up in court) [20:30];
  • An attorney’s perspective on the mistakes expert physicians make [29:50];
  • Alleviating the fear of physicians who are terrified of being on the witness stand [34:15];
  • Advice Rich would give to an expert physician witness who is being cross-examined in an antagonistic way and is clearly unsettled [37:35];
  • Rich’s advice for responding to ‘yes/no’ questions when there isn’t a ‘yes/no’ answer [41:55];
  • What do the best expert witnesses do that the worst ones never do: prepare [43:15];
  • The difference between direct testimony and cross-examination [50:15];
  • And more.


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