Admissibility of Expert Testimony in Federal and State Court


In light of the recent Court of Appeals decision in Parker v. Mobil Oil Corporation1 restating the distinction between state and federal courts on the admissibility of expert testimony, an analysis of the issue is valuable for practitioners. Under the Federal Rules of Evidence (“FRE”), Rule 702 governs the admissibility of expert testimony.2 Prior to enactment of the federal rules, the federal courts adhered to the “general acceptance” test established in Frye v. United States.3 “The long-recognized rule of Frye…is that expert testimony based on scientific principles or procedures is admissible but only after a principle or procedure has „gained general acceptance in its specified field.”4 In Daubert v. Merrill Dow Pharmaceuticals,5 the United States Supreme Court held that the Federal Rules of Evidence superceded Frye, and the general acceptance test was no longer required.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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