Commercial Litigation and Arbitration

Experts / Daubert — The Abuse of Discretion Standard Applies as Much to the Trial Court’s Decisions about How to Determine Reliability as to Its Ultimate Conclusion

Decker v. GE Healthcare Inc., 2014 U.S. App. LEXIS 20049 (6th Cir. Oct. 20, 2014):

We review the district court's decision to admit or exclude the testimony of a party's expert witness for abuse of discretion. Kumho Tire, 526 U.S. at 152; Sigler, 532 F.3d at 478. As the Supreme Court explained in Kumho Tire, "[t]he trial court must have the same kind of latitude in deciding how to test an expert's reliability, and to decide whether or when special briefing or other proceedings are needed to investigate reliability, as it enjoys when it decides whether or not that expert's relevant testimony is reliable." 526 U.S. at 152. The abuse of discretion standard "applies as much to the trial court's decisions about how to determine reliability as to its ultimate conclusion." Id. Accordingly, the district court has "broad latitude" to determine "whether Daubert's specific factors are, or are not, reasonable measures of reliability in a particular case." Id. at 153.

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