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Cross Examination of Experts Concerning Class Certification

Challenging Predominance and Methodology to Gain Leverage in Settlement

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will provide advanced techniques for deposing adverse expert witnesses in class action certification litigation, with particular focus on establishing or attacking predominance.


The complex issue of predominance often determines the winner in the battle for class certification. Whether some or all the elements of a plaintiff’s claims are susceptible to common proof is increasingly decided on expert testimony.

With certification often won, lost, or reversed by expert witnesses, the expert's deposition is the crucial battleground. Yet even experienced litigators can be stymied deposing an expert with a deep level of expertise in complicated subject matter and vast experience in being questioned by adverse counsel.

Often, seasoned lawyers fail to get the information they need from the opponent's expert because they attempt to debate the expert deponent concerning the subject of the expert's opinion. This presentation will prepare litigators for a deposition with lines of questions that will reveal weaknesses in the expert's opinion without tipping off the expert and how to advance the examiner's case.

Listen as this experienced panel of class action practitioners discusses best practices and tactics for taking control of the deposition, setting up the expert for impeachment at trial, challenging the expert's methodology, and gaining the upper hand in settlement negotiations.



  1. Preparing for the deposition
    1. Determining what must be proven to certify the class
    2. Jurisdictional standards for using expert testimony at certification stage
    3. Researching the expert's opinions and prior testimony
  2. Deposing the expert
    1. Limiting the scope of expert's area of expertise
    2. Getting opposing expert to deviate from the theme
    3. Developing topics for cross-examination at trial
    4. Exposing personal biases
    5. Focusing on what the expert did not consider
    6. Appropriate methodologies and correct application
    7. How to effectively use experts' analyses to address manageability of a class action trial


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What constitutes "rigorous analysis" of expert testimony by a district court?
  • What are the most complex expert deposition hurdles, and how to overcome them?
  • How to attack the expert's methodology
  • Limiting the scope of an expert's area of expertise
  • Getting the opposing expert to deviate from the party's theme


Bailey, Blake
Blake Bailey

Bailey Law Firm

Mr. Bailey has tried to conclusion almost 150 jury trials, and has had an extremely high success rate throughout his...  |  Read More

Trask, Andrew
Andrew J. Trask

Senior Counsel
Shook Hardy & Bacon

Mr. Trask focuses his practice on class action and complex litigation in various industries, including the automotive...  |  Read More

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