Victims of crime and the courts

Information

If you have been the victim of crime, you may have contact with the courts system. You may be a witness at the trial of your case or you simply wish to attend and watch the trial.

For many victims, going to court can be a daunting and distressing experience. A number of support systems have been introduced to encourage and support victims and to protect them from intimidation.

Rules

  • Support services available to victims of crime includes a Victim Support at Court service, which gives you the victim or witness to a crime support, encouragement and companionship of trained volunteers when you are attending court.
  • The court can allow the use of video link for the giving of evidence by a victim if you live outside Ireland, if the proceedings relate to a sexual or violent offence, if you are under 18 years of age or if other exceptional circumstances are present.
  • The court can allow you, if you wish, to give evidence about the effect (pdf) of a criminal offence on you through the use of victim impact statements.
  • The Courts Service provides dedicated waiting rooms for you and your family in new and refurbished court buildings.
  • In murder and manslaughter cases, reserved seating in the courtroom is available for the family of the deceased.

How to apply

If you are unhappy with the service available as a victim of crime in a courthouse, you should, first of all, raise this with the victim liaison officer for that courthouse and/or the office manager for that courthouse.

You may also refer the matter to a Customer Complaints Officer within the Courts Service. Your complaint will then be investigated on your behalf. More information is available in Section 5 of the Victims Charter (pdf), published by the Irish Government.

Where to apply

Courts Service

Customer Service

Phoenix House
15/24 Phoenix Street North
Dublin 7
Ireland

Tel: +353 (0)1 8886000

Page edited: 17 April 2020