Military personnel accused before military tribunals often have no freedom of choice of counsel, even from among military personnel. They may face particular difficulties in securing evidence in their favour and in having access to all the evidence brought before the tribunal by the prosecution. Hearings by military tribunals are held in what may in some cases be an unnecessary degree of secrecy. Procedures followed by military tribunals tend to stress the importance of dealing with cases speedily, and this factor may also operate to the detriment of accused military personnel.
Military tribunals also have jurisdiction over civilians in a number of countries; and the offences which they are empowered to try are often of a political character.