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Guidance for witnesses

Joining the hearing

5 minutes before the hearing is due to start, click the link in the invite you've received stating 'Click here to join the meeting'.

When asked to sign in, select ‘Join as a guest’ and enter your name using the naming convention which you've been given by the representative for the hearing. This is likely to be your preferred pronoun and anonymised letter, eg Ms A. Then select ‘Join meeting’.

You shouldn't enter your name unless you've discussed this with the representative in advance. This is because the name you use to sign in with is available to all participants.

Switch your video and audio on before joining the hearing. You're placed in a virtual lobby before we admit you and will see the message 'Someone in the meeting should let you in soon.'

We can't communicate with you through the virtual hearing while you are waiting in the lobby. If there's any delays to proceedings commencing the representative for the hearing will contact you.

You'll be joined to the hearing when the tribunal is ready.

If you've not been added to the hearing more than 10 minutes after the expected time, please contact the representative that has asked you to attend the hearing.

During the virtual hearing

Once you've joined the hearing you'll be able to see the tribunal. MPTS staff will have their cameras switched off but you'll be able to hear them when they speak.

Remember to turn your video on and unmute your microphone when you're speaking. Say your name, or anonymised naming convention, before you speak. With prior agreement, there may be situations where your video is switched off.

The chair or the hearing host will confirm who is present.

If you lose connection and drop out of the hearing, close the Teams window and re-join using the link from the hearing invite.


If you need a break or to discuss a matter with your representative at any point, you can use the 'raise hand' button to ask. 

You should organise any private conversations with representatives yourself.

If there's a short break, the chair may say that you can switch off your camera and microphone. The chair will state what time to come back. When the tribunal has switched their cameras back on, you may do the same.

If there's a break during you giving evidence, you shouldn't speak to anyone about the hearing. Read our Witness guide to hearings.

At the end of your evidence, select the ‘Leave’ button to leave the hearing. If you need any support after you've given evidence, please speak to the representative.