If you get a witness summons

This advice applies to England. See advice for See advice for Northern Ireland, See advice for Scotland, See advice for Wales

If you’ve witnessed a crime, you might get a witness summons telling you to go to court. This means you'll have to be at the court on the day of the trial and give evidence if you're asked to.

You should go to court if you get a summons - you can be arrested and taken to the court by the police if you don't.

You might get a summons from the court if:

  • they haven't been able to contact you with a witness warning

  • they think you might not come on the day

  • you've said you won't go to court

  • you were told the date of the trial and you didn't turn up

If your employer has said they won't give you time off, the court could give you a summons to show your employer.

If you’re worried about going to court

You can get free and confidential help from the Witness Service. They can give you emotional support and help you understand the court process.

You can find out more about the Witness Service and how to get help.

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