Frequently Asked Questions

Q Why does my criminal court matter keep getting adjourned (put over)?

A As a victim, it can be frustrating when your court case keeps getting adjourned, or put over to a new date. It makes it difficult to move on and begin to heal when you constantly have to be reminded of the crime. In Canada, anyone who is charged of a crime has a number of rights that the system must respect. This includes the right to have a lawyer, and a right to know what you’re being charged with (what the evidence is against you). The most common reasons why court dates keep being adjourned are: • The Accused needs more time to get a lawyer • The Accused and their lawyer need time to receive and review the evidence • There is a possible resolution offer and both sides need more time to reach an agreement • They are setting a date for a trial, decision or sentencing, and they are still trying to find a date that works with everyone’s schedules.<br><br> Court can be a very lengthy process, so if you are a victim of a crime please reach out. You do not have to attend court unless you receive a subpoena (most often this would be for a trial). Instead, your local Victim Services Unit should be able to keep you updated on what is happening in court. If you have any questions about the court process or your court matter, please give our office a call at 780-980-7232.

Q As a victim of a crime, do I need a lawyer?

A No, for regular criminal court matters, you do not need a lawyer. Since you are technically not the one charging the accused, you do not need a lawyer to go to court for you. The file becomes the responsibility of the Crown Prosecutor’s office, who will then decide how to move forward with a file. You then become a witness for the Crown, if the matter goes to trial. There are special court hearings where a victim needs a lawyer, but as a victim, you would be told of your rights before that happens and provided a lawyer for free, if you want one.

Q As a victim of a crime, do I have to go to court?

A No, for regular court dates, you do not have to attend court. The only time you have to go to court is if you receive a subpoena telling you to attend court on a certain date. This would be for something like a preliminary hearing or trial. If you are the victim on a file going through court, you can call our office and we can provide an update on what happened.

Q As the victim of a crime, can I drop the charges?

A Anyone who is charged of a crime is charged because the police decided there was enough evidence to lay charges. When charges are laid, the victim cannot just “drop the charges.” The file is given to the Crown Prosecutor’s Office, who will then decide how they would like to proceed with the file. As a victim of a crime, you are not the one charging someone else and you cannot decide to drop the charges. That is a conversation you would have with the Crown Prosecutor. They will be the ones to decide if the charges are dropped or not.

Q How can I find out what is happening with my criminal court matter?

A Call your local Victim Services Unit, and they should be able to give you either the next court date or court outcome for your matter. If you live in our service area (Leduc/ Leduc County, Beaumont, Devon, Thorsby, or Breton), you can call our office at 780-980-7232.

Q Can you help with parenting orders/ civil matters?

A Victim Services mainly deals with criminal matters, so we cannot help with anything family or civil court related. We can, however, give you resources or information on places to reach out to that can assist with family/ civil matters. Simply give our office a call at 780-980-7232.

Q What are my rights as a victim of a crime?

A As a victim of a crime, you have a number of rights that you are entitled to keep you safe and protect your dignity. Our unit will do everything we can to make sure that your rights are respected. Your rights include the following: • You should be treated with courtesy, compassion and respect • Your privacy should be considered and respected to the greatest extent possible • All reasonable measures should be taken to minimize inconvenience to you • Your safety and security should be considered at all stages of the criminal justice process • You should be protected from intimidation and retaliation by all means necessary • You should be given information about the criminal justice system, your role and opportunities to participate in criminal justice processes • You should be given information about the status of the investigation, the scheduling, progress and final outcome of the proceedings and the status of the offender in the correctional system • You should be given information about available victim assistance services, including victim impact statements, requesting restitution, means of obtaining financial reparation and other programs • You should promptly receive financial benefits for the injuries that you have suffered • If charges are laid, you have the right to prepare and give the court a victim impact statement that tells how the crime affected you • You have the right to ask to read your victim impact statement out loud in court, or ask someone else to read it for you • You have the right to not be contacted by inmates • Your views, concerns and representation are an important consideration in criminal justice processes • You should be given information about how to complain when you believe that these principles have not been followed • Your needs, concerns and diversity should be considered in the development and delivery of programs, education and training

Q Is there a cost to access your services?

A No, there is no cost to access any of our services or programs.

Q Do you provide counselling?

A No, our advocates and staff and not trained counsellors. As such, we are unable to provide counselling. If you are looking for counselling for yourself or a loved one, you can call us at 780-980-7232 for information about different resources in your community.
Leduc Protective Services Building
(Leduc RCMP Detachment)
#1, 4119 50th Street
Leduc, Alberta T9E 7L9


OFFICE AT (780) 980-7232


8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

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