Going to court as a witness

During your court appearance

You should arrive early and ask at the front desk where to find the prosecutions room so you can let the prosecutor know you are there.

What you should wear

Court is a formal situation so you should wear clean, neat clothes and shoes. You should not wear clothes with rude slogans or pictures. Bring a jacket as the courtroom can be quite cool.

What you should bring

You may be in court all day so you should bring food, especially if you are diabetic, water and something to read or keep you entertained.

Until you are called into the courtroom you should remain in the court foyer or Witness Assistance Service room, so you will not be able to leave to buy anything.

Being called into the courtroom

When the court is ready to hear your evidence, the court orderly will call out your name. You should follow them into the courtroom.

As you enter, you should bow slightly or nod to the judge. You must take off any headwear or sunglasses and turn off your mobile.

You will be shown to the witness box and asked if you want to make an oath on the bible, or a promise to tell the truth before you sit down.

You must tell the truth in court. Telling a lie is a serious offence and you can go to prison.

The prosecutor will start to ask you questions. If you become upset or need to go to the toilet, you can ask for a break.

It is up to the judge if they will allow you to take a break.

Once you have finished giving your evidence, you can leave court.

You don’t need to remain at the court house. The case may continue so the prosecutor may contact you later to talk to you.

Interpreter services

If English isn’t your first language you can have an interpreter in court. They will ask the questions in your language and repeat your answer back to the court in English.

Find out more information about interpreter services.

Find out more information about courtroom rules.

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Last updated: 01 May 2016

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