Expert Witness Testimony Services in Chicago

When you’re working to get the appraisal of your home determined, you may need an expert witness to deliver testimony that will support what you’re arguing for. For instance, if there are appraisal questions about certain factors that may have affected value, or the appraisal is related to a divorce process, it’s important to have an expert witness deliver testimony supporting the evidence of the appraisal.

Rick Hiton is proud to be able to offer expert witness testimony services in Chicago for all sorts of properties. If you’re in a situation that calls for unbiased appraisal work, contact Rick Hiton & Associates any time for help.


The Expert Witness as a Judicial Consultant

The reasons for hiring an expert witness are many. For instance, the appraiser may be hired simply to critique the opposing side’s existing appraisal against a new appraisal they conduct, or they may be hired as a consultant to an attorney, helping with things like direct examination questions, technical issues, and more. It will depend on what the case is calling for—some involve industrial or business valuations, and even very experienced property tax lawyers may need assistance sorting through appraisals and finding faults or errors in them.

Expert Witness Testimony Services from Rick Hiton

Why Are Expert Witnesses Called?

Expert witnesses are called upon when there is a value dispute at hand. The client typically stands to benefit from either a higher or lower value, and the appraiser is meant to be an impartial, unbiased source, an expert witness for the court. Because the client usually stands to benefit one way or another, this is a difficult job for the appraiser, because they can unconsciously and accidentally slip into the role of advocate for the client without realizing it. This happens because the expert witness is called upon by the client’s lawyer, and the lawyer is absolutely an advocate for the client.

One way to guard against this is to consider if the opinion of value would be different if the property was to be used in a different manner. For instance, if the appraiser is hired as an expert witness to determine the tax value of a property that’s a restaurant, it should be considered: would the value be different if the appraiser was working for the restaurant and attempting to determine how much a bank loan should be? If the two hypothetical property values are not the same, the appraiser’s value conclusion should be reconsidered, as this can be an indication that bias has crept in. If the two values are different, it can be an indication that the expert witness/appraiser is favoring one party.

Working with Rick Hiton & Associates

When you work with Rick Hiton, you’ll be working with a skilled professional with decades of real estate experience.

Rick Hiton & Associates is a team of dedicated, experienced professionals with the know-how necessary to properly appraise properties, and we also offer other services related to real estate appraisals and valuation.

If you’re in need of expert witness testimony services, call us today. Rick Hiton is available for expert witness services, and will be able to offer you the help you need.

Learn more about Rick Hiton & Associates’ available services—contact us any time.