The thought of having to go to court might make you feel nervous or anxious, especially if you have to give evidence - this is normal.
If you have been assigned a Witness Assistance Officer they can help you prepare for court.
Before you go
Planning your day beforehand might help you feel more comfortable about going to court.
You don't need to wear a suit to court, but you should dress neatly.
In a courtroom, it is not appropriate to wear:
You should also bring a jacket or jumper as some courtrooms can be cold.
Think about how you'll get to the court - it's a good idea to get there 30 minutes before the case starts.
You might need to catch public transport as car parking can sometimes be hard to find near the courts.
The Adelaide Metro website can help you plan your route.
You should take something to do and something to eat and drink while you are waiting - it can be unpredictable how long your case might take.
When you get to court
At the court, the Sheriff's Officer can show you to a special waiting room for victims and witnesses.
If these rooms aren't available they will find a safe place for you to wait.
If you are intimidated by the offender or people that are with the offender while you are waiting, you should tell the sheriff's officer or the police investigator.
You may also be able to have someone go to court with you as a support person.
In the courtroom
There are a few things to be aware of in a courtroom:
- When a judge or magistrate enters or leaves the courtroom, you must stand up and bow.
- You must turn off your mobile phone, pager and alarm on your watch while in the courtroom.
- You are not allowed to talk or take notes if you are sitting in the public gallery.
- You cannot call out your objections, shout at the accused, applaud or cheer.
- If the judge speaks to you, you should stand and address them as 'Your Honour', 'Sir', or 'Madam'.
As a victim, it can be hard to keep calm. If you feel upset, you can leave the courtroom. If you are giving evidence, you can ask for a break.
Remember - you won't be able to sit in on the trial until after you have given your evidence.