Going to court as a witness

Going to court as a witness

If you witnessed a crime you may be asked to give evidence in court. You will be advised when and where you have to go to court.

If you have to give evidence in the Magistrates’ Court the letter you receive is called a ‘summons’. If you have to give evidence in the County or Supreme courts the letter you receive is called a ‘subpoena’.

If the case goes to trial in the County Court or Supreme Court you will usually have to give evidence at a committal proceeding in the Magistrates’ Court first. A committal proceeding is when a magistrate decides whether there is enough evidence for the case to go to trial. If the case goes to trial you may have to give evidence again.

You may also have to attend court if you submit a victim impact statement.

Giving evidence

When you give evidence, you will be asked to tell the court what happened to you. You may be asked questions by a:

In some cases, victims may be able to give their evidence from a location outside the courtroom via closed circuit television. If you feel vulnerable ask the prosecutor about this.

Support is available

There are a number of support services available to help you if you have to appear in court.

Get help

Find out how victims of crime can get help.