Summoning a witness to court
Where a party in legal proceedings believes that a witness might not attend court of their own accord, they can apply for the issue of a witness summons. A Witness summons is an order sent to an individual that tells them that they have a certain date to appear in court.
A witness summons can take two forms:
- a witness summons necessitating an individual to relay evidence; and
- a witness summons necessitating an individual to produce documentation that is required as evidence.
How do I obtain a witness summons?
In order to acquire a witness summons, you must send two finalised witness summonses to the court where the case is proceeding or where the hearing is to be held. This can be done by completing form N20, which can be attained from the court itself or the Court Service’s website. A distinct witness summons is needed for each witness whose presence at court is wanted.
If the court arranges service on the witness, the party who wants the witness summons should also relay to the court an amount of money to be paid or presented to the witness.
When is permission of the court required?
A party must get consent from the court where that party wants to:
- have a summons delivered less than seven days before the final hearing date;
- have a summons delivered for a witness to appear in court in order to give evidence or to produce documents on any date except the date finalised for the final hearing; or
- have a summons delivered for a witness to appear in court in order to give evidence or to produce documents at any hearing that is not the final hearing.
If consent of the court is needed, this must be obtained by making a formal application to the court in question. Applications like this are typically dealt with by a judge on paper and without the need for a hearing.
If you are in search of a process server in London, whether to deliver witness summons or a statutory demand, contact All Lanes today. A full list of our services can be found on our website.