The “common knowledge” exception to the expert testimony requirement

McGathey v. Brookwood Health Services —   So.3d —, 2013 WL 3958299 (Ala. 2013)

In this very recent decision, the Alabama Supreme Court applied the “common knowledge” exception to a case involving a metal bar that was strapped to a patient’s arm during her shoulder surgery. The bar was hot from having been recently sterilized and burned the patient’s skin. The Court decided that the patient does not have to produce expert testimony because the alleged “want of skill or lack of care [is] so apparent … as to be understood by a layman, and requires only common knowledge and experience to understand it.”