Interviewing, Counseling, and In-Court Examination of Children: Practical Approaches for Attorneys
Creighton University - School of Law
November 28, 2010
REPRESENTING CHILDREN IN CHILD PROTECTIVE PROCEEDINGS, 3rd International Edition, LexisNexis, 2007
Creighton Law Review, Vol. 18, p. 1369, 1985
There are many different ways in which a child may become involved in a legal proceeding and there are many issues that arise when this occurs. This article addresses the issues that exist when a child is a part of the legal process and how an attorney should handle these issues. At the forefront, the authors of this article show how attorneys should know and understand the general cognitive and moral stages of child development before interacting with the child. The next step is to overcome the barriers of communication between an adult attorney and child by making the child feel comfortable, asking questions that the child will understand, and making sure that the child understands the attorney’s role and the legal process as best as he or she can. The article then moves on to a discussion of problems of factual accuracy with children, when children are allowed to testify in court and how to examine them in court. The final part of the article considers other special problems, such as issues of confidentiality, dealing with parents, working with a child who has been severely injured or who has witnessed a death or serious injury, and counseling the child on how to make decisions. Overall, the article gives suggestions to help attorneys adequately face the challenges that arise when working with children.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 58
Keywords: Interviewing, counseling, children, trial practice, legal profession, attorney-client relationship, examination
Date posted: November 29, 2010
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