Victims & witnesses of crime

The Court recognises that the impact of crime can be significant and distressing and that attending court can be a daunting experience. This page is a resource for complainants, victims and witnesses of crime.

Victims’ rights and roles fact sheet

This fact sheet details the support and assistance available to complainants and victims of crimes being heard at the County Court. It also talks about other people affected by a trial, including family members of the victim and witnesses.

In this fact sheet you will find information about:

  • reporting and investigation of a crime
  • Victorian Victim’s Charter
  • attending court
  • courtroom layout
  • giving evidence
  • victims register
  • sentencing
  • recent reforms and current issues.

Going to court

This video provides practical information for complainants, victims and witnesses who are coming to the County Court.

A transcript of the video is available here.

You can also take a virtual tour of the County Court to become more familiar with the building.

Getting information about the offender: the Victims Register

The Victims Register is a service that can give you information about the offender who was sent to prison for a violent crime.

Requesting information to be made public

Under Victorian law, there are restrictions on publishing information that could identify a victim of a sexual offence. These provisions are found in the Judicial Proceedings Reports Act 1958 which was amended in February 2020.

Applications for information such as names and details restricted by suppression orders and non-publication orders can be made using the form Application for permission to publish details otherwise prohibited by the Judicial Proceedings Reports Act 1958 or made verbally during court proceedings. Details on applying can be found in the Guide to applying for permission to publish information about victims of sexual offences. There is no fee for making this application.

For enquiries and assistance with making an application, contact the Court Registry by:

Legal advice and assistance is available to victims from the following organisations:

Women’s Legal Service Victoria
Staffed by female lawyers who provide free advice for women on how the current law might affect you:

Victoria Legal Aid
Free service that provides advice on how the current laws might affect you and can assist with making an application to make information public:

Support services

Free help is just a phone call away. You can find information about support services for complainants, victims of crime, a family member, or witness in need of support on our support services page.

Find out about support services.

Other resources

The Office of Public Prosecutions’ Victims and Witnesses website has extensive information for victims of crime, witnesses and bereaved family members.

Visit their site to learn about:

The Victorian Government’s website for people affected by crime has information and support to help you manage the effects of crime and guide you through the legal process.

This website is a resource to:

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Page last updated: 17 September 2020