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Update to Florida’s “Hired Gun” Bill

March 21, 2012

As we previously reported, the Florida House of Representatives recently passed a bill aimed at reducing the number of “hired guns” who testify as expert witnesses.  The bill has since moved on to the Senate where some notable adjustments have been made.  An amendment issued March 8th allowed for elements of the current Frye standard while incorporating the Daubert method in other areas.  According to one court observer:

According to bill analysis, the amended version of the bill would allow “established science” to be subject to a Frye standard, while “new and emerging scientific testimony” would be subject to a Daubert standard.  The amended bill also seems to give large leeway to courts in making a determination regarding which standard to choose.

The amended bill has now returned to the House for approval.  If enacted, it could go into effect as early as July 1, 2012, however many legal analysts note a similar bill making its way through the Florida government last year eventually died in the Senate in May.  For now, the potential impact on expert witnesses in Florida remains to be seen.


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