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Appendix A10.11

Employees giving expert advice or acting as expert witnesses

1. Introduction

This section sets out how you must respond to a request to:

  • a) act as an expert witness in legal proceedings between third parties, or
  • b) give expert opinion during the preliminaries leading to litigation.

2. Responding to a request to act as a witness/give opinion

2.1 You must refuse to act as an expert witness or give expert opinion in preliminaries leading to litigation on matters where your special knowledge is attributable to your official duties unless you are subpoenaed or if your Director agrees that there are exceptional circumstances.

2.2 If you are subpoenaed you must immediately inform your Head of Operations. The Head of Operations will obtain professional legal advice for the specific aspects of:

  • the scope for liability for negligence on the part of BBSRC/the establishment (or the governing body) as employer and on the part of the individual
  • the need to protect intellectual property and knowledge arising from work funded by the BBSRC
  • the need for BBSRC as a non-departmental public body supported by public funds to be seen to be impartial in disputes between third parties and
  • the link between the BBSRC's reputation and standing and statements made publicly by senior employees about their work, even where they appear in a personal capacity

See also personal consultancies or other work appendix A10.3.

Last updated by nt 26/02/08
Amendment: 14 February 2008