Do Doctors get paid twice at trial? $$$

Let’s say an county coroner is asked by the defense to give evidence at a murder trial. He is being paid by the county and thus is drawing a salary.

The defense says they are paying for his testimony, so is he being paid twice?
Does he have to take the day off work for the county to go to trial?
Does he get paid for that day? Or is he docked pay for that day?
Then the defense pays him a fee.
Is he getting paid twice since I assume his salary is not by the hour but by the week whether he is there or not.

If he’s testifying to events witnessed as part of his official duties, then, no, he doesn’t get paid anything extra. Same as when police officers are called to testify. It’s all part of their job description, so they don’t get extra and they don’t get docked.

Why would the defense need to call him as an expert witness? It’s his job to be there and testify. You bring in expert witnesses who aren’t directly involved in the case.

It just came to mind today while I was watching a case of Tenn vs. Taylor for murdering a young boy which he was the foster parent. The pathologist was called by the defense and the first thing they spoke of was he being paid by the defense and he said “yes”.
So would he still be getting paid by the county?

If a coroner were called to testify in another county, he might be a paid expert witness. I know there are some forensics experts who travel all over the country because of their expertise on a particular issue.

As to whether they get paid their regular salary for the coroner’s job… it would depend on how the regular job works. There’s nothing to prevent employees from using vacation or sick time to pursue other jobs and still get paid for their regular job. Many employees can set up flexible work schedules that make it possible to work weekends or work 4 10-hour days so they get three days off. Many salaried employees can work as many or as few hours as they want to as long as their work gets done.

First off, Tennessee doesn’t have coroners. They have Medical Examiners, who are MDs. That’s not necessarily the same thing as a forensic pathologist, although that’s who gets hired in larger/wealthier jurisdictions.

If the defense calls a pathologist to the stand and he is not identified as a Medical Examiner for that jurisdiction, then he is not acting in an official capacity and is not getting paid by anybody but the defense (well, he’s probably salaried, but has to take personal time of some sort).

A coroner, on the other hand, might not even be an expert in anything, and would seldom be called to testify in anyone’s defense.

— First off, Tennessee doesn’t have coroners. They have Medical Examiners, who are MDs. That’s not necessarily the same thing as a forensic pathologist, although that’s who gets hired in larger/wealthier jurisdictions.—

Yes that’s right he was called a Medical examiner.
Same question.
And I think they had a forensic pathologist as well.
Would it be that they take time off to be a witness in a murder trial?

If he was a fact witness, i.e., he did the autopsy, then testifying would be part of his job. If he was hired as an expert witness by the defense, maybe to rebut the prosecution’s medical examiner or pathologist, he would get paid by the defense and would have to arrange time away from his usual job.

Physicians who are public employees (coroners, medical examiners, pathologists, etc.) don’t get extra pay for court time, IME.

Physicians who aren’t public employees but are hired as expert witnesses get paid whatever they agree to be paid for their work on the case. Dr. Jones will get a flat fee for his entire service, regardless of the time it takes, while Dr. Smith may insist on getting an hourly fee and is paid based on how much time she puts in (reviewing medical reports in the office, sitting in a courthouse hallway waiting to be called to the witness stand, and actually testifying). Smart and ethical docs will make it clear, up front, that their conclusions aren’t for sale - “If you hire me, counsel, I’ll review the documents but I won’t commit to saying just what you want me to say.” This also enhances their credibility with the jury, as with the doctor who can truthfully say he testifies sometimes for plaintiffs, sometimes for defendants in medmal cases.

Funds and time permitting, though, a lawyer can always find a doctor somewhere who agrees with his client.