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Legal Mind Case and Commentary No 10: Who Knows Best? the Judge or the Expert? - Dr Hugh Koch & Dr Jacquie Hetherton, Hugh Koch Associates

18/09/16. The judge weighs the arguments set before him and ensures that pertinent issues have been addressed. He is aided by barristers, lawyers and experts who should have considered all relevant matters, in a logical way. Despite the adversarial and at times selective approach of the two sides, all matters of relevance should be laid before the judge. This case illustrates what can happen when this has not occurred.

Case: Burne v. A (2006 CA WL 316092)

The case of Burne v. A was heard in the Court of Appeal in December 2005, and involved a six-year-old with a ventricular shunt who developed sickness at school. The GP misdiagnosed an infection rather than a blocked shunt. As a result, he developed permanent neurological damage. The GP experts called by both sides agreed it was acceptable to ask open-ended questions. The judge disagreed and found the GP in breach of his duty of care to A for not asking closed-ended questions. The judge found that...

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