Virginia: Wrongful Death – a Lawyer’s Grief

Virginia: Wrongful Death – a Lawyer’s Grief

The October 2011 issue of Trial, the monthly publication of the American Association for Justice (“AAJ”) www.justice.org, features “Benefits of a Grief Counselor’s Testimony.” The bottom line of that article is that a professional “grief counselor can put the loss [of wrongful death] in context to help jurors understand your client’s suffering.” Id. at 40.

Professional grief counselors usually are psychologists or psychiatrists. Hence as expert witnesses they must qualify in wrongful death cases under Federal Rule of Evidence 702 and Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 509 U.S. 579 (1993) and progeny. Id. at 43.