‘A Practical Guide to Dealing with Vulnerable Witnesses in Criminal Courts and Beyond’ by Sally Penni MBE


Paperback: 978-1-913715-85-4
Published: April 2022
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SKU: B0233 VULNERABLEWITNESSES Categories: , Tags: , ,


There is an ever increasing need to obtain the best evidence from vulnerable witnesses. The importance of recognising the extent of law relating to vulnerability continues to increase. The law also embraces Adults who have conditions such as a Learning Disability or who experience the effects of events and conditions such as autism and Asperger’s.

It is vital, therefore, that Practitioners can provide the best advice to clients and their families and supporters connected to this complex and developing area of work. It is equally important that other Professionals involved in assisting the court process understand the treatment of Vulnerable Adults and appreciate how the law impacts on their work and informs them of the best ways to achieve the best evidence rule.

This book looks at the comprehensive regime affecting Vulnerable Adults, and reflecting the requirements of the Youth Justice and Evidence Act. It offers an overview of the content of case law in relation to vulnerable witnesses in the criminal courts and beyond, and the practical steps available to those advising them in criminal cases and beyond. The book also considers what assistance can be offered in other areas of law.

This book offers practical advice.


Sally Penni is a Barrister at Law with 21 years’ experience. She is an advocate specialising in public law with an emphasis on vulnerability. She is an Approved Advocate trainer, a Bencher of the Honourable Society of Gray’s Inn. She is a member of the Board of TAG – the Advocates Gateway.


Chapter One – Who Is ‘Vulnerable’?
Chapter Two – The Practical Approach
Chapter Three – Children, Young People and Vulnerable Adults
Chapter Four – Neurodiversity in Court
Chapter Five – Vulnerable Witnesses in Criminal Proceedings
Chapter Six – Vulnerable Witnesses in Family Courts Proceedings
Chapter Seven – Vulnerable Witnesses in Employment Tribunals
Chapter Eight – Vulnerable Witnesses in Personal Injury Proceedings
Chapter Nine – Vulnerable Witnesses in Other Countries and Jurisdictions
Chapter Ten – Practical Things to Think About
Chapter Eleven – Conclusion
Chapter Twelve – Resources and Further Reading