What Is a Litigation Support Specialist? Do You Need One?

You probably already know what this kind of professional is, you just didn’t know that you should call them by this name. On television and in movies, the role of the litigation support specialist in the courtroom is often fudged with the term “expert witness,” an overlapping role that most if not all of them take on. While almost every specialist offering litigation support can testify as a qualified expert witness, not every expert called is such a specialist. Some are qualified as experts but subpoenaed through regular means as a part of the investigation during the pre-litigation phase. On top of that, support specialists offer information and analysis early in the process of building a case, not just at trial or in hearings.

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When Do You Need a Specialist?

You’re going to want to have a litigation support person attached to the case whenever there is a complex matter that requires parsing and explaining to the jury or officers of the court. That’s how you support the explanation of the mechanics behind the claim in many cases, including those dealing with complex financial and banking matters, intricate legal details, medicine or science, and human psychology. These experts can also be qualified to verify authenticity, as when an art expert is called in on a forgery case. Typically, counsel decides when and if a specialist is going to be needed. If you’re the plaintiff or defendant, you might want to suggest it if you feel it will be necessary, but you won’t be responsible for finding one.

Understand Your Case

Litigation support personnel are more than just experts who help the jury understand, they can be integral to your processing of the event in question because they can help you see the moving parts build a better picture of the way the event in question affected you, as well as what the continuing consequences might be. This is useful not only in arguing your case, but in moving on from it with closure when it’s done.


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