Frequently Asked Questions...

Do I need to have reported my crime to the police to get support?

No, we can provide support even if the crime hasn’t been reported. If reporting the incident is something you want to do, we can support this process too.

Can you help me getting a new house?

Whilst we can provide advice on the right avenues/services to contact, we cannot directly assist with a house move or help increase your priority banding.

Can NVWS help me financially?

Unfortunately we can’t provide financial assistance but can direct you to the appropriate services

Is everything I tell you confidential?

Our support is impartial to the criminal investigation. However, if safeguarding concerns are raised we do have a duty of care to report this.

I have difficulties in hearing can you visit me face to face?

Yes, face to face meetings can be arranged if it will benefit you in getting support.

I don't speak English am I still able to speak to you?

Yes, we have access to an Interpreter Service who can assist us with speaking to you.

I haven't heard anything from the officer about my case can you help me get an update?

Yes, we are able to link in with the officer to try and obtain the information or request contact. You can get in touch with NVWS on 0800 011 3116 or email

Can I claim expenses to attend court?

If you live outside of the Northumbria area, we can organise travel and accommodation for you. If you live within the Northumbria area, you may still be entitled to claim travel expenses. You may also be entitled to claim expenses for loss of earnings, childcare and refreshments.

My employer will not give me time off to attend court, can you help?

We are able to supply a letter to your employer outlining the statutory requirement to attend court.

Can I claim compensation for the crime committed against me?

Compensation is awarded by the court in certain cases.  In cases of violence, you may be able to obtain compensation under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme. This will take into account the amount awarded (and collected) by the criminal court. You can find more information on

In some circumstances a person who has suffered loss or injury can take proceedings against the person responsible in the civil courts. For further information, you can contact the Citizens’ Advice Bureau.

What if I no longer want to go to court?

Our trained Victim & Witness officers can discuss options available to you.

Can somebody attend court with me?

Yes, a child victim/witness is entitled to take along 2 people for support. Adult victim/witnesses are entitled to take along 1 person for support, however this can be discussed with your Victim & Witness Support Officer if you wish to take more than 1 or 2 people.

Do I need a solicitor?

No, each case is represented by a lawyer/or barrister from the Crown Prosecution Service to act on your behalf.

Can I speak to the lawyer/barrister in charge of my case?

You will have an opportunity to speak to the lawyer/barrister when you arrive at court. If there is anything you wish to raise prior to the court date, please contact your NVWS case worker.

Is it possible to avoid contact with the defendant at court?

We will make every effort to minimise contact with the defendant. Your NVWS worker may be able to apply for special measures that would allow you to be hidden from view in court, or to give your evidence remotely via TV link. If you do need to attend court in person, every court has a separate dedicated prosecution witness waiting area.

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