People taking part in hearings are warned that they must behave in their own home as if they were in a court room, as 85% of all court hearings move to video and audio.
Figures released by HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) this week show that:
- On 6 April 2020 around 85% of cases heard in England and Wales used audio and video technology
- Between 19 March and 6 April 2020, courts and tribunals reported that the use audio in hearings increased from around 100 to around 1850
- Between 19 March and 6 April 2020, courts and tribunals reported that the use video in hearings increased from around 150 to around 1100
Guidance issued by HMCTS on joining a video or telephone hearing warns appellants that during a hearing, even though they are in their own home, they must follow the same rules as if they were in a court room, including:
- only drink water
- no eating
- no smoking or e-cigarettes
- make sure the view behind you is blank or neutral
- If you need to move away from your screen or phone during the hearing, ask permission.
- If you need to have someone with you who is not a legal representative, you must ask the court’s permission.
Appellants are also warned that: “It’s a criminal offence to record or publish any court hearing without authorisation.”