If your case goes to court, the defendant will enter either a guilty or not guilty plea.
If they plead guilty, they will be sentenced and you will have the chance to read your Victim Personal Statement at the hearing, if you’ve made one.
However, if they plead not guilty and the case goes to trial, you may be called as a witness.
If that happens, you’ll be assigned a witness care officer who will be able to talk you through exactly what happens when you attend court, and will keep you up-to-date about what’s happening – including the location, dates and times of court hearings and whether you will be required to attend and give evidence.
You also have the option of visiting the court beforehand so you have a better idea of what to expect, and the court-based Witness Service (operated by the Citizens Advice Bureau) will also be on hand to make sure you have a copy of your witness statement on the day of the hearing. You’re not allowed to take the statement into court, but you can use it to remind yourself of what you said before you go to give evidence.