REG 05.10.02 – Providing Expert Witness Testimony

Authority: Issued by the Chancellor. Changes or exceptions to administrative regulations issued by the Chancellor may only be made by the Chancellor.

History: First Issued: March 1995.

Contact Info: CALS Personnel Director (919-515-2708)

1. Introduction

Due to the expertise and position of Extension employees, they are frequently sought in courts of law to provide facts and data to assist in resolving various claims and suits. When the employee provides such expert witness testimony, it usually benefits one party to the detriment of the other. This places the Extension employee in an unintentional adversary position. To reduce the impact on the employee, the Extension Service and our institution, and to provide uniform method of handling an increasing number of cases, the following guidelines are established.

2. Civil Suits Between Two Private Parties

2.1. Give testimony only under a valid duly served subpoena or as “juris amici” (friend of the court). Under these conditions, the employee is in an official capacity as a state and federal employee which provides tort claims protection

2.1.1. If testimony will result in serious conflicts or relationship problems, suggest other experts such as private consultants to the attorneys or court. It might provide relief from a subpoena

2.1.2. Provide only factual knowledge and data as an expert witness refraining from non-substantiated opinions and ideas

2.1.3. Provide advance notification to your supervisor and to the Director’s Office of testimony including expected date, names of parties involved, and nature of the suit

2.2. Accept NO fees or monies personally for this testimony

3. Claims Involving the United States Government

Extension employees have appointments within the United States Department of Agriculture and are considered employees of the federal government. In cases which involve the U. S. Government as a party in the suit, the employee is urged to contact the Director’s Office for guidance and precautions in their role as expert witnesses