Your trusted CPD partner

Evidence - hostile & difficult witnesses

Evidence - hostile & difficult witnesses
Add to CPD Planner


All criminal lawyers need to be able to confidently deal with difficult and hostile witnesses if they are to represent their clients effectively. This seminar will help equip you with the relevant skills by taking you through the law, and taking a practical approach in working through the key issues that you are likely to be confronted with.

This seminar will include:
  • Practical tips for when swearing in reluctant witnesses
  • Effective ways to go about refreshing a witness’ memory
  • Practical guidance for how to handle hostile witnesses
  • Tools and techniques that exist to deal with witnesses who are unhelpful, unwilling, or unable; including:
    - Effective ways to lead difficult witnesses
    - Preparing your own witness for deposition and cross examination.

Learning objectives

By attending this seminar you will gain:

  • Knowledge on understanding the relevant law.
  • Practical tips on how to effectively manage hostile, difficult and forgetful witnesses.
  • The skills required so you don’t panic in the face of difficult witnesses.

Who should attend

Criminal lawyers with up to seven years’ experience, also a helpful refresher for more experienced practitioners seeking a refresher.


A short paper, in PDF format, together with a copy of the powerpoint presentation will be emailed out prior to the seminar.


  • 4.00pm - 6.00pm (tea and coffee available on arrival)

Fee (incl GST)

In Short

  • $115 - NZLS members and Associate members
  • $165 - Non-members

Do you want to register more than one person for this course? Click here
Download registration form

Auckland 26 June
Live Web Stream 26 June


Nick Chisnall Photo WEB EDIT Nick Chisnall
Barrister, Blackstone Chambers, Auckland

Before joining the bar, Nick was the Public Defence Service’s General Counsel and oversaw the PDS’s appeal practice. Before that, he was Crown Counsel at the Crown Law Office, where he undertook appeals on behalf of the Solicitor-General. He has appeared many times on behalf of both defendants and the Crown in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. Nick is an experienced jury trial advocate, both as a senior Crown prosecutor and defence lawyer and has defended and prosecuted all types of serious criminal cases.

Lynn Hughes 2016 WEB EDIT Lynn Hughes
Public Defender, Public Defence Service, South Auckland

Lynn is based in the Manukau PDS office where she leads a large team of criminal defence lawyers. Lynn is a member of the NZLS criminal law committee and a long-standing member of the ADLSi criminal law committee. She is an author for Abbot and Thompson on District Court Procedure (Criminal). She has presented on various criminal law topics for NZLS and other legal education providers, and is a member of the Litigation Skills Faculty.

Cancellation and refund policy

If written notice of cancellation of a registration arrives before the day of the seminar we will refund the registration fee, less an administration fee of $40. If you are unable to attend, you may send a substitute - to correctly assign CPD credit, CLE must be notified in advance. NZLS CLE Ltd reserves the right to cancel or reschedule seminars if necessary.

freephone (within NZ)
0800 333 111


04 472 7837

04 463 2986
Law Society Building
26 Waring Taylor Street
Wellington 6011

DX SP 20202
PO Box 5041
Wellington 6140
New Zealand