Presenting And Challenging
Expert Witnesses Post-Sanchez
In its landmark decision, People v. Sanchez, the California Supreme Court established new and significant limits on the ability of
experts to testify to hearsay statements they relied on to form their opinions. Sanchez has been called, “the most impactful
California Supreme Court decision on evidence in the last decade.” Sanchez represents a seismic shift away from allowing
experts to serve as the conduit for otherwise inadmissible hearsay. Nearly every family law case involves expert testimony
regardless of its size or complexity. Whether you litigate or mediate, you need a foundation for determining what evidence is
admissible and what is not.
Experts routinely testify in child custody and domestic violence proceedings, and with respect to financial matters, business
valuations, income for support, pension valuations, deferred compensation, and property valuations.
This course will be taught by Justice Mark Simons and Judge Thomas Trent Lewis. They will present an in-depth analysis of
Sanchez, including why family law cases are not exempt and what types of hearsay experts may still rely upon in presenting
their opinions. Don't be the only lawyer in the case who doesn't understand Sanchez. This is an evidence program you will
not want to miss!
• Judge Thomas Trent Lewis
• Justice Mark B. Simons
QUALIFYING EXPERT WITNESSES
• When expert testimony is necessary
• Who is an expert
• How to qualify an expert witness
• How to challenge an expert's qualifications or theories
• Whether the theoretical basis for the expert's opinion
is consistent with family law principles and the
limitations under Sargon v. U.S.C.
UNDERSTANDING HOW THE HEARSAY RULE
IMPACTS EXPERT TESTIMONY
• How the hearsay rule applies to expert testimony
• What evidence is hearsay and what evidence is not
• What hearsay exceptions apply to the expert's
• Whether the documents the expert relied upon
constitute hearsay and what exceptions to the
hearsay rule apply in family law proceedings
• Whether different rules apply to e-documents
• When an expert may rely on out-of-court
statements to form his/her opinion
• When an expert may testify as to those same
PREPARING YOUR EXPERT WITNESS
• Who your expert interviews
• What critical steps you must take following
PRESENTING EXPERT TESTIMONY
• The foundational elements for the expert's testimony
• The rational basis for the expert's theory under
Sargon v. U.S.C.
• The strategic basis underlying the presentation
CHALLENGING EXPERT TESTIMONY
• Whether to challenge at a deposition
• Use of the motion in limine
• Challenges in the trial court
• Whether there is a sufficient basis for the expert's
opinion under Ev. C. §§801(a) and 803 when certain
evidence is excluded
Enrollees will receive a complete version of all slides used by the presenters, plus other supplemental materials. You have the option of receiving either printed course materials OR course materials on a USB drive, which allows you to save them to your hard drive and take notes directly next to the material covered. See order form to make your selection.
Enrollees may also purchase at special prices TRG’s three-volume California Practice Guide: Family Law, written by Judge William P. Hogoboom (Ret.) and Justice Donald B. King (Ret.), and the two-volume California Practice Guide: Family Law FORMS.
6 HOURS MCLE/Specialization Credit: Approval of specialization credit in Family Law has been granted by the California Board of Legal Specialization, and approval of MCLE credit for this activity has been granted by the State Bar of California in the amount of 6 hours.