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Canadian Courts, Expert Testimony, Expert Witnesses, Health Care Experts, Traditional Approach, Critique


In this paper, I will first describe the traditional approach to the use of experts in Canadian courts. Then I will consider whether, on this approach, health care ethics experts should be permitted to testify in Canadian courts. I will argue that they should be permitted to testify but caution should be exercised by the courts, the parties, and the experts themselves. The objective of the paper is to highlight the strengths and raise some concerns about the weaknesses of a practice that appears to be growing, so that the potential harmful consequences might be anticipated, problems with the practice might be avoided and the potential benefits might be maximized.