Expert Requirements

After we review your medical records and see the potential for medical malpractice, then the next phase in the process is to examine the Maryland medical malpractice expert requirements and get support for the case from medical doctors who will serve as experts. In general, one or more medical doctors must testify as the defendant breached the standard of care and was the proximate cause of injury. Unless the sole issue is informed consent, at least one of the experts must sign a Certificate of Qualified Expert. CJP 3-2A-02, 04. However, Maryland has specific medical malpractice expert requirements for the expert who can provide this testimony.

Requirements for Doctor Expert Witnesses

The following are the requirements for medical expert witnesses in Maryland medical malpractice cases. Note that most are on the expert who provides breach of standard testimony. Many do not apply to an expert who only opines as to proximate cause or injury. Additionally, we have added numbers to the descriptions for a couple of reasons. First, they highlight the many different requirements, including each requirement’s sub-components. Second, they show when a requirement can be satisfied by meeting one of several options.


The following medical malpractice expert requirements apply to the CQE:

3-2A-02 Maryland Medical Malpractice Expert Requirements

  • The expert must specifically say that the care given by the defendant was 1) not in accordance with the standards of practice, 2) among members of the same health care profession, 3) with similar training and experience, and 4) situated in the same or similar communities at the time of the malpractice. CJ 3-2A-02(c)(1).
  • The expert shall have had 1A) clinical experience, 1B) provided consultation relating to clinical practice, OR 1Ci) taught medicine in the defendant’s specialty or ii) a related field of heath care in which the defendant provided care to the plaintiff, 2) within 5 years of the alleged act or omission. CJ 3-2A-02(c)(2)(ii)(1)(A)
  • If the defendant is board certified in a specialty, the expert signing the CQE 1A) shall be board certified in the same or 1B) a related specialty CJ 3-2A-02(c)(2)(ii)(1)(B), UNLESS
    • 1)the defendant was providing care unrelated to the area of board certification CJ 3-2A-02(c)(ii)(2)(A), OR
    • 2) the expert taught medicine in the defendant’s specialty or a related health care field. CJ 3-2A-02(c)(2)(ii)(2)(B).

The lawyer files the CQE along with a report of the export. CJ 3-2A-04(b)(3).

3-2A-04 Maryland Medical Malpractice Expert Requirements

  • The standard of care expert may not devote more than 1) 25% 2) of their professional activities, 3) to activities that directly involve testimony in personal injury claims, 4) during the 12 months immediately before the date the claim was first filed. CJ 3-2A-04(b)(4)(i)-(ii).
  • An expert must say that the departure from the standard of care is the proximate cause of the injury. CJ 3-2A-04(b)(1)(i)(1).

The Maryland courts have interpreted many of the components of these medical malpractice expert requirements. For more information on these cases, read the Baltimore Medical Malpractice Lawyer Blog. Specifically, review the posts:

Proximate Cause

Maryland medical malpractice expert requirements do not always require a medical expert to prove the proximate cause of an injury. Vroom v. Arundel Gas Co., 262 Md. 657, 664 (1971). For example, the plaintiff does not have to put on expert testimony “where the causal connection is clearly apparent from the illness itself and the circumstances surrounding it, or where the cause of the injury relates to matters of common experience, knowledge, or observation of laymen.” Wilhelm v. State Traffic Safety Comm’n, 230 Md. 91, 99 (1962). For example, the plaintiff does not need a medical expert “where a dentist extracts the wrong tooth, a doctor amputates the wrong arm or leaves a sponge in a patient’s body.” Schultz v. Bank of America, N.A., 413 Md. 15, 29 (2010).

However, medical expert testimony on causation is required if “an injury claimed to have resulted from a negligent act is a complicated medical question involving fact finding which properly falls within the province of medical experts.” Wilhelm, 230 Md. at 100. Therefore, when you call the Kopec Law Firm, we will analyze the Maryland medical malpractice expert requirements to determine whether we must get expert support for the proximate cause issue in your case.

Causation in Maryland medical malpractice cases can become complicated at times. Read this Blog post about Maryland’s Daubert exclusion of plaintiff’s experts on causation in an Erb’s Palsy case.


The Kopec Law Firm is ready to review your Maryland medical malpractice medical records. To start this process for your case now, visit the free consultation page or video. Then contact the Kopec Law Firm at 800-604-0704 to speak directly with Attorney Mark Kopec. He is a top-rated Baltimore medical malpractice lawyer. The Kopec Law Firm is in Baltimore and pursues cases throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C.

Next Phase

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