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MAGISTRATES' COURT ACT 1989 - SECT 4K

Alternative arrangements for giving evidence

    (1)     The Family Violence Court Division may direct that any of the following alternative arrangements be made for the giving of evidence by a witness in a proceeding

        (a)     permitting the evidence to be given from a place other than the courtroom by means of closed circuit television or other facilities that enable communication between that place and the courtroom;

S. 4K(1)(b) amended by No. 68/2009 s. 97(Sch. item 82.10).

        (b)     using screens to remove the accused, defendant or respondent (within the meaning of the Family Violence Protection Act 2008 ) from the witness's direct line of vision;

        (c)     permitting a person to be beside the witness while he or she is giving evidence for the purpose of providing emotional support to him or her;

        (d)     requiring legal practitioners to be seated while examining or cross-examining the witness;

        (e)     permitting only persons specified by the Family Violence Court Division to be present while the witness is giving evidence;

        (f)     any other alternative arrangements the Family Violence Court Division considers appropriate.

    (2)     If the witness is 18 years of age or over, the Family Violence Court Division may make a direction under subsection (1) on its own initiative or on the application of a party to the proceeding.

    (3)     If the witness is under 18 years of age, the Family Violence Court Division must make a direction under subsection (1) unless it considers it is not appropriate to do so having regard to—

        (a)     the wishes expressed by the witness; and

        (b)     the age and maturity of the witness; and

        (c)     any other matters that the Family Violence Court Division considers relevant.

    (4)     The Family Violence Court Division may hear an application under subsection (2) or ascertain the matters in subsection (3) in camera and, except as otherwise directed by the Family Violence Court Division, persons who are not parties to the proceeding or their legal practitioners or representatives are not permitted to be present while the hearing takes place or the matters are being ascertained.

    (5)     Any place outside the courtroom where a witness is permitted to give evidence under this section is to be taken to be part of the courtroom while the witness is there for the purpose of giving evidence.

    (6)     The Family Violence Court Division may at any time in the course of the proceeding vary or revoke a direction made under subsection (1) on its own initiative or on the application of a party to the proceeding.

Note to s. 4K(6) repealed by No. 68/2009 s. 97(Sch. item 82.11).

    *     *     *     *     *


Notes to s. 4K inserted by No. 68/2009 s. 97(Sch. item 82.12).

Notes

1     For party to a proceeding, see section 3(1).

2     If a witness is the complainant in a criminal proceeding, Divisions 4 and 6 of Part 8.2 of Chapter 8 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2009 also apply.

S. 4L inserted by No. 77/2004 s. 4.



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