Back when I was with the U.S. Attorney’s office, an issue in almost every case that had to be on my radar was protecting and proving chain of custody. Our office and the agencies we worked with had great procedures in place to make sure that when challenged, evidence had been handled in a manner to insure it was intact, trustworthy and reliable.
As a products plaintiff lawyers, we also have the burden of proving chain of custody and need office and investigative procedures in place to make sure our clients’ evidence is properly collected, documented and handled. Through trial and error over the last fifteen years, our firm has developed procedures and forms to help us avoid problems with this issue.
Today I gave a brief seminar on proving chain of custody in a products case and am posting the Prezi presentation here for anyone to use. Check back tomorrow and I’ll post some additional forms and checklists we use for investigation and chain of custody as well.
Another step consumer attorneys should always consider when investigating a potential product liability claim is to hire an independent consultant to help preserve a crash scene. One expert we use is Soan Chau out of Gainesville, Florida. We’ve used Soan Chau for several years on many cases and he does a great job surveying a crash site, documenting evidence, and preserving chain of custody. His number is (352)256-1352.
Check back tomorrow for checklists and more forms.