Missouri Business Headlines

House committee supports expert witness reform

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In a tight vote, a Missouri House committee has approved legislation that would add more credibility to Missouri’s legal proceedings.

Senate Bill 591 and House Bill 1676 would require that people who testify as expert witnesses must actually have expert knowledge of the topic.

The bills would provide the same high standards for trial evidence that is required in federal courts and many other states. Called the Daubert standard, it ensures that only evidence deemed relevant, reliable and provided by qualified individuals will be admitted as expert testimony.

The bills were approved by a close 7-5 vote. The passage came after several Missouri businesses personally reached out to committee members and explaining why this legislation is critically important.

“The phone calls and emails business people made to the the committee members truly made the difference in this vote,” said Brian Bunten, Missouri Chamber general counsel and director of legislative affairs. “I would like to thank the committee for listening to the voice of the business community as they made this vote. I also want to thank Sen. Mike Parson and Rep. Kevin Corlew for their continued leadership on this issue as sponsors of the legislation.”

For more information on this issue, contact Brian Bunten, Missouri Chamber general counsel, at bbunten@mochamber.com, or by phone at 573-634-3511.

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