Consent

In cases of assault and sexual assault it may be a defence that the person complaining of being assaulted gave consent (free and voluntary agreement ) to the alleged assault. For example, in many sports, where players anticipate and agree to a certain level of contact.

This is a particularly difficult area of the law - please see further descriptions of the law in this area in our sections on Rape and Indecent Assault.

There are some people who cannot legally consent, for example children (see in particular the handbook sections on child sexual assault, and unlawful sexual intercourse). Another example is where there is undue influence on people with a cognitive impairment (see further the handbook section on Sexual offences where the victim has a cognitive impairment (for example an intellectual disability)).

Consent  :  Last Revised: Tue Sep 29th 2015
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