This page will take 5 mins to read
Access to court documents
If you’ve been a victim of crime and the offender went to court, you have the right to be told the outcome of the court case and any appeals. You can also request access to court documents from the case.
What documents can you access;
You can make a request to see or copy:
- information from the court record, such as a description of the charge(s), the outcome of the case, details of any suppression orders or cost orders
- any judgment, order or minute of the court, including any reasons given by the judge
- any sentencing notes made by the judge.
Sometimes you’ll need to get the court’s permission before you can access a court document. You might not be able to access certain information if the court made suppression orders or other orders prohibiting publication of information. If you’d like to access a court document, ask the court victim advisor or registrar at the court where the case was heard.
Can I be kept up to date about the offender?
If you’ve been the victim of a serious crime, you can choose to stay informed about what happens to the offender after they’re sentenced. If the defendant goes to prison for more than one year, if convicted of a violent or sexual offence, you can be kept up to date if they are released or are appearing before the parole board.
This is done via the Probation Service, through a Victim Liaison Officer. Your Witness Care Officer will ask you if you want to be updated regarding any changes. If you do a Victim Liaison Officer will contact you and explain how this is done. It is very important you agree to participate in this scheme, as this means your feelings will be considered by the Parole Board when they make their decision. If you say “no” you will not be updated.
If you’ve been the victim of a serious crime, you can apply to go on the Register at any stage after the person has been charged with an offence. Police are responsible for verifying applications to be put on the Register. You can also nominate a representative to receive information on your behalf.
A parent or legal guardian of a child or young person under the age of 17 who has been the victim of an offence can apply to go on the Register. A child or young victim can apply to go on the Register once they turn 17.
Last modified 10th November 2016