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Planning your day at court
Firstly, make sure you are looking after yourself by eating well and getting enough rest. Here are some more hints for planning your day at court.
The court is a formal environment. The information on this page will help you prepare in your role as a witness and even assist you with common basic concerns such as what you should wear.
Before you go to court, it is helpful to read your statement again and be familiar with it. Think about the events and try to remember details such as dates, times, descriptions, actions and exact words used. Do not discuss your evidence with anyone else.
Be prepared to speak loudly and clearly. The microphone on the witness box does not always amplify; sometimes it is only used to record proceedings.
You cannot be advised to what to say at court. Your role is to tell the truth as best as you can.
Some hints for planning your day at court.
- Decide and prepare what you are going to wear to court before the court date. It's generally best to wear conservative clothes. Make sure that whatever you wear is comfortable, as you will probably be there for most of the day. It may also be useful to bring a jacket or a jumper as some courtrooms can be cold.
- It may be a good idea to plan how you are going to get to court. For example, if you are taking public transport, check timetables, possible routes, etc., so that you can get there on time and have time to find the courtroom.
- It's helpful to have a support person, such as a friend or family member go to court with you.
- You may think about meeting with the police or prosecutor if you have any questions or concerns.
- Pack a bag to take with you to court. In the bag have something to read or do while you are waiting at court. You may want to take your own food and drink. Sometimes it can be helpful if you take a small item with special meaning for you to court, such as a piece of jewellery or a letter from someone close to help make you feel more secure.
- It can be good to have friends or family with you while you are waiting at court and to have things to do while you are waiting, such as games and magazines.
- Try and plan something nice to do after court.
On the day of court
- Try to have some breakfast.
- Don't forget your bag and any items you want to take with you.
- You may like to pack some food and drink.
- Remember you can talk to the police, prosecutor or court staff if you have any worries or questions.