LegalEase  
Choosing the Right Expert  
Dr. Joseph Harvard, MBA vs. Joe Workingman  
b y C h i p G e n t r y  
he bad news: your company has our side to make sure we come out on and defend your interests to the best of  
been sued. The good news: the top? What defines a quality expert?  
facts of the case are on your side,  
my ability,I need both to“tell the story,”  
showing that your company followed  
every policy and procedure at each  
T
and if everyone does their job properly, Who to ChooSe  
your company will almost certainly  
In my experience, most experts stage of the process. This includes the  
win. It will take a lot of hard work and fall into one of two categories, which manufacturing, delivery and installa-  
diligence from plenty of people,but the brings us to our first expert profile: Dr. tion of your quality products.  
odds are in your favor, and hopefully Harvard. Dr. Harvard resembles a col-  
you already have a great team assem- lege professor, graduated from an Ivy What WorkS BeSt?  
bled and prepared to enter the litiga- League school at the top of his class,  
It’s possible the jury deciding the fate  
tion battlefield. But what if you don’t and has personally memorized the of your company could be composed of  
already have these people in place? “Window and Door Installation Bible” a doctor,sitting next to a mechanic,sit-  
What kind of people do you need on cover-to-cover.We need Dr.Harvard.He ting next to a postal worker,sitting next  
your team? What are their roles? And establishes the foundation that allows to a professional bull-fighter. Juries are  
how, exactly, are they going to help you your attorney to build and construct a diverse. If we are to succeed, we must  
successfully defend this lawsuit?  
presentable and sound legal founda- diversify our expert testimony. What  
tion to a panel of jurors. Dr. Harvard we want more than anything is for a  
illustrates his immense knowledge to jury to say, “I liked that guy,” or better  
Starting PointS  
First and foremost, you need an at- the jury with extreme attention to de- yet, “I believe that person.” Extracting  
torney with fenestration and glass ex- tail and razor-sharp precision. His be- that emotion and reaction from a group  
perience and resources to captain your hind-the-scenes testimony shows the of 12 randomly assembled Americans  
team. An attorney with connections jury how complex it can be to install can be a daunting task.  
and knowledge in the industry is the various products within various wall  
Juries are complex and unpredict-  
most valuable thing you can have when systems. The problem: the jury has no able. Even if the facts weigh strongly  
preparing for complex litigation where idea what Dr. Harvard is talking about. in your favor, having experts that can  
your company’s existence could be on  
This brings us to the second category relate to a wide range of people is an in-  
the line. You also need competent em- of expert: Joe Workingman. I refer to valuable resource that can make all the  
ployees, installers and manufacturers these experts as “boots on the ground” difference in the outcome of a trial that  
to testify on behalf of your company people. Mr.Workingman isn’t afraid to could decide the future of your com-  
to show that you followed the protocol get his hands dirty. Joe is the kind of pany. Choosing the proper counsel can  
and standards at all stages of the proj- expert who has been a regional project be an extremely difficult decision, but  
ect.That brings us to the third and final manager for 28 years, has personally if you take your time, and choose the  
invaluable piece of the litigation puz- installed thousands of windows, and right person, it may be the only tough  
zle: Experts.  
has overseen hundreds of projects. Joe decision you have to make during the  
I often spend more time trying to Workingman is the kind of expert ju- litigation process. n  
find the best expert(s) for a case than rors like, believe and appreciate.  
I do on just about any other aspect of  
So who do we go with: Dr. Jo-  
trial preparation.Fenestration litigation seph Harvard or Mr.Joe Working-  
is complex, and the ultimate outcome man? In order to ensure the best  
often comes down to the proverbial chances of proving our case and  
C h a r l e s A . C h i p ”  
G e n t r y is a founding  
member of Call & Gentry Law  
Group in Jefferson City, Mo.  
He can be reached at chip@  
callgentry.com.  
battle of the experts.” Therefore, I al- preventing your company from  
ways make sure my clients have the incurring massive liability, I typ-  
biggest and best arsenal.What do I look ically recommend both. In order  
for? What kind of people do we need on to effectively do my job properly  
10  
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | December 2016  
www.usglassmag.com