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What is an Employment Consultant?

By Pablo Garcia
Updated May 17, 2024
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An employment consultant is an expert witness who advises on employment-related issues. One or both of the parties to a lawsuit may retain an employment consultant as an expert witness in a case. In the US, expert testimony is presented at the discretion of the trial judge.

An expert witness who is an employment consultant generally has experience, training and certification in the area of calculating the monetary worth of particular types of occupations. She may also make projections on what the future income of individuals will be depending on their age, education, profession, level of experience, and possibilities for advancement. The court may use these projections to determine damages in a particular case.

Employment consultants could be called upon to testify as an expert in many types of cases. Typical cases include personal injury, employment discrimination, and dissolution of marriage cases. They are also employed in administrative hearings involving workers compensation and disability claims.

In employment cases involving allegations of gender, race, or age discrimination, there may be issues regarding the disparity in wages among employees performing the same work. In dissolution of marriage cases, there are issues of property division, spousal maintenance, and child support that may require an expert’s analysis to aid the court in its decision. It may be necessary to fix a value to things like one spouse giving up a career in order to advance the career of the other, or the value of working at home. In fixing damages in injury and wrongful death cases, it is necessary to determine past, present, and future loss of income resulting from an accident injuries. When death is involved, an expert testimony from an employment consultant may address the issues of economic loss to the family and survivors.

These types of consultants sometimes offer opinions in hearings before administrative law judges in disability and workers compensation claims. Workers compensation claims involve calculations of lost income as well as future employment prospects. At a social security disability hearing, it is necessary to determine what type of work a claimant might be able to do, or whether the claimant is not employable in the foreseeable future.

In the US, the court determines whether someone can testify as an expert to an underlying issue in the case. Generally, the party wishing to present the expert testimony must “qualify” the witness. This consists of asking the witness questions about her education and training. She may also be asked about any licenses or certifications she holds and any books or papers she has written.

The opposing party may cross-examine the witness about her qualifications. She may be asked if she agrees or disagrees with experts in the field who have different opinions than she does. The ultimate consideration in allowing a witness to testify as an expert is whether she has knowledge and experience that would aide the court or the jury in reaching a decision on the issue.

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