Getting a restaurant expert witness to prove damages in a litigation case can be tricky for some lawyers. One of the challenges is your client, who may be the restaurant owner and/or operator, may often assume way more than are ordinary and reasonable losses. Added to this challenge is if the income loss evolves around competition having a similar but not exact replication and when its food and beverage operation was impacted. Here is an example of where a single unit of a “hypothetical” branded restaurant chain claims it was affected by other foodservice businesses in the same shopping center offering a similar menu item and a request to our readers to post answers: 1. Menu Overview This restaurant chain offers specialty chicken items prepared according to a certain “cooking” method. The lawsuit claims that sales and eventual lost income were lost as a result of other restaurants nearby offering similar items (i.e. typical chicken dishes that most restaurants offer). Follow this link on what a restaurant expert witness would consider typical chicken dishes for these competitors. 2. Operation Challenges The restaurant in this example attracted its customers by its certain “cooking” style and method. Patrons who wanted this type of chicken would seek out this restaurant specifically. An “unrelated” but an example of a cooking technique that a restaurant operations expert might use is at this link. In this case, other restaurants signed leases to operate within the same shopping complex. Other than having chicken dishes and that were cooked differently, there was no direct competition other than a chicken dish in and of itself. 3. Damages (if any) The important issue to consider is the impact on those items isolated around the chicken menu items using the special “cooking method.” How might you answer these questions from an Owner or restaurant management services firm: – Can the items based on the specialty cooking method be lined up against the competition’s individual items sold? If so, how would you do it?? – Will the justification of any impact be based on something other than the ebbs and flow of business among competing restaurants? If not, why not?? Now let’s ask the legal beagles… Are you an attorney or law firm that has hired a restaurant expert witness for a lawsuit with similar issues? What can you share (while protecting client privilege) with our readers that potentially were opinion(s) that won or lost your case?