Paul H. Gross, C.C.M.
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
What makes a good weather expert?
When do I need a weather expert?
What if both sides in the case have weather experts?
The most outstanding expert witnesses share three things in common: the expertise necessary to earn the jury's respect, the ability to articulate the subject in a simple, clear and interesting manner, and the highest level of ethics and professionalism. Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. excels in all of these areas.
He is one of very few meteorologists in the world to attain the American Meteorological Society's highest professional certification: the Certified Consulting Meteorologist designation. Quoting the American Meteorological Society: "CCMs are the only members that the AMS, as a Society, endorses to the public as having the necessary knowledge, experience, and character to effectively serve as a meteorological advisor or consultant to business, industry, and the public." Paul attends a considerable amount of continuing education each year, and has received numerous professional honors (click here to display Paul's curriculum vitae). Furthermore, the Michigan Court of Appeals has twice specifically qualified Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. in the area of snow and ice removal (click here to review excerpts from the Michigan Court of Appeals opinion in Balogh v Churchill Square Apartments and from McCurdy v Industrial Excavating, Inc.).
Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. brings more than just a stellar resume into the courtroom. He has researched well over 2000 weather-related cases, and this plus his substantial experience as a television meteorologist and teacher-like attitude, results in some of the most outstanding courtroom presentation skills of any expert witness you have ever seen. Paul has earned the respect of many judges and attorneys, and clearly makes a significant impact on the jury (click here to see comments from judges and clients).
Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. maintains the highest level of ethical and professional conduct. He works plaintiff, defense, civil and criminal cases without prejudice, and is brutally honest when consulting with you about your case. If the weather data is clearly damaging to your case, you will get this message without bias. Paul never "sugarcoats" his information just to satisfy you and, since he understands how the law impacts many types of litigation involving weather, you will get the information you need tailored specifically to your needs.
The greatest tribute to ethics and professionalism is referrals. Most of Paul's new clients are referrals, and it is not uncommon for him to have clients on both sides of a case (naturally, he can only work for one side). Equally gratifying is the number of attorneys who hire Paul shortly after working against him in a deposition or trial.
"Very late on Wednesday afternoon, the jury came
back in our favor on the issue of negligence. Needless to say, my client
and I are extremely pleased. Your testimony was very instrumental in this
case, and was very well received by the jury...I know because I talked
to one of the jurors after. She was very impressed by your testimony and
was also offended because Plaintiff's road expert tried to offer some
meteorological opinions which she felt only you were competent to give."
"Thank you very much, Mr. Gross, that was quite an education."
"The weather data that you charted and presented, accurately
and cogently explained difficult technical information. It was abundantly
clear from your testimony that you were very well prepared. Plaintiffs'
counsel, an able cross-examiner with more than 25 years' experience, was
not able to discredit any of your testimony. Your presentation and overall
testimony was, in a word, superb."
"I spent a surprising one-and-a-half hours with the jury
after their verdict, and they came to their decision largely based upon
"I believe that the information you provided, together
with the analysis of our construction engineer using your materials, made
a significant impression on the mediation panel."
“I just wanted to let you know we argued the motion for summary disposition in Cass County yesterday. Thanks in no small part to your affidavit and weather data, we beat the motion on all counts. Well done.”
“Please be advised that I was able to recently settle this case. I just wanted you to know how much I appreciated your professionalism throughout this matter and what a pleasure it was working with you. Your knowledge of the science and law, together with your attention to detail were greatly appreciated. I will certainly call you if I need your services in the future and would recommend you to any attorney, plaintiff or defense.
"Defendant further asserts that meteorologist Paul Gross was not qualified
to render an expert opinion regarding methods to ameliorate snow and ice.
In doing so, defendant contends that Gross' only qualification on how
to ameliorate snow and ice was that he lived in the area his entire life.
However, defendent clearly ignores the testimony of Gross, in which he
stated that his knowledge was based on his scientific background and his
work as a meteorologist and reporter. Moreover, Gross' testimony assisted
the jury in determining whether defendant acted reasonably in regard to
the removal of snow and ice from its parking lot on March 2, 1993. Thus,
the trial court did not abuse its discretion in allowing the testimony
of Paul Gross as an expert in the methods of snow and ice removal."
"Lastly, defendant argues that the trial court abused its discretion by permitting plaintiff to introduce expert testimony by defendant's employee and plaintiff's expert regarding the effectiveness of salt on snow and ice. We disagree....Plaintiff's expert was a meteorologist at a local television station. He took three semesters of chemistry while he was earning his degree in meteorology. He testified that during his chemistry courses, he learned about the properties of salt. This education is sufficient to justify the trial court's decision to qualify him as an expert in this area."
There are many different types of cases that involve a weather expert. The most common, of course, is the basic slip and fall. Other situations include auto crashes, visibility issues, roof failure due to excessive rain or snow, and loss due to wind, flooding, lightning or severe weather. Keep in mind, however, that some cases do not directly involve weather, but still could benefit from the expertise of a meteorologist. For example, the location of the sun and its impact on visibility is important in certain matters, as is the phase of the moon and its contribution to ambient nighttime lighting.
The best thing to do if you are not sure whether or not
you need a weather expert is to ask. Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. does not allow
himself to be taken out of his area of expertise. You will be told up
front if his skills are not appropriate for your case.
two excellent meteorologists looking at the same data should arrive upon
the same conclusions. However, Paul H. Gross, C.C.M. has encountered some
bad science over the years. It is important that you determine as concisely
as possible, preferably through deposition, the other meteorologist's
opinions. In one case, Paul spent most of his discovery deposition educating
an attorney about unbelievable "errors" (error implies unintentional...this
may not have been the case) in his weather expert's conclusions. The case
settled one week later.