Goodell DeVries's appellate practice group helped make Maryland legal history today. In a landmark ruling, the Court of Appeals expressly adopted the Daubert standard for judges weighing the admissibility of expert testimony. See Rochkind v. Stevenson, Case No. 47, September Term, 2019 (Aug. 28, 2020).
Derek Stikeleather and Gus Themelis persuaded the Court to formally recognize that the evolution of Maryland evidence law warranted formal adoption of the Daubert standard and retirement of the Frye-Reed test. The Reed court had adopted Frye in 1978, but Maryland courts had long struggled to harmonize Frye-Reed with Maryland Rule 5-702, which was enacted in 1994. Today’s ruling resolves the confusion by reducing the two overlapping tests to one well-recognized and flexible test. It clearly sets the threshold that proposed expert witnesses must meet under Rule 5-702 in any civil or criminal proceeding in Maryland where the rules of evidence apply.
Look here for more analysis and commentary in the coming days.
In the News:
- Maryland Adopts 30-Year Old Federal Expert Evidence Standard (Bloomberg Law, August 31, 2020)
- It’s Official: Maryland Accepts Daubert as Controlling Law for Admitting Expert Testimony (Maryland Appellate Blog, August 31, 2020)
- Md. High Court Adopts New Standard for Scientific Testimony (The Daily Record, September 1, 2020)
- Maryland Adopts the Daubert Standard for Determining Expert Testimony Admissibility (Expert Institute, September 17, 2020)