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Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2013 9:54 pm 
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Hi everyone,

I witnessed an accident on hwy 401 last year and stopped to help - cop took my information down and I received a court order few months back to show up in a hearing as a witness in August. I have a very very busy schedule and I am self employed. I charge $250 / hour in consultation. Am I entitled to any payments to show up? I'd rather not show up at all since there are more witnesses unless they can afford me. What is the process for me to put the word out to them?

Thanks


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 4:09 am 
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boardposter wrote:
Am I entitled to any payments to show up?


No


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 9:15 am 
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Depending on how far you have to travel to the court, they may pay mileage in some areas. And if you simply don't show up a warrant may be issued for your arrest.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:12 am 
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What if something comes up that day? like a business trip, or becoming sick?


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:06 am 
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A business trip doesn't come before a subpoena to court. It's your responsibility to contact the prosecutor with any of your concerns about your court appearance.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 1:17 pm 
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I sure hope that your are never the "victim" of a collision and the witness does not want to appear in court. Even better if it is a he said/she said where the witness is the only one who can get the blame off of you.

Because then you will see just whats it like to get screwed.

We had a JP here issue witness warrants for all the missing witnesses. We had a grand old time going and arresting and taking them to jail. All these people who were to busy sure made time when the spent 18 hours in jail waiting for court. We also made sure that we attended their places of work to arrest them. (which is totally allowed as you do not get to chose the time or place to get arrested and rarely is it convenient ). And remember the warrants never dissappear. You could have a trip booked to a vacation and get hooked up at the airport. I am going to guess in most cases the vacation is ruined.(again happens lots in the winter here)

I wish it happened more.


OPS


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 3:40 pm 
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Not to hijack this thread, but I have a hypothetical question regarding witnesses.

A witness gives a statement at the scene of the incident, but the defendant doesn't agree with the "facts" detailed in the witness statement. At trial, if the witness does not show, can the prosecution simply rely on the statement given. Or, perhaps, is the trial postponed until the witness is present?


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Tue Jun 25, 2013 10:55 pm 
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MegaSilver wrote:
Not to hijack this thread, but I have a hypothetical question regarding witnesses.

A witness gives a statement at the scene of the incident, but the defendant doesn't agree with the "facts" detailed in the witness statement. At trial, if the witness does not show, can the prosecution simply rely on the statement given. Or, perhaps, is the trial postponed until the witness is present?


The prosecution would need to have the witness present to testify. The defence needs to able to question/cross examine the witness, something not possible with a written statement.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 11:16 am 
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Insurance companies makes tones of money from everyone. Justice department gets paid well from many different sources. A good person stopping and signing a paper to be a witness is not treated well. There is simply no incentive to stop and become a witness. The court order surely won't be the end of it as then the civil case comes a long...


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 2:16 pm 
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boardposter wrote:
Insurance companies makes tones of money from everyone. Justice department gets paid well from many different sources. A good person stopping and signing a paper to be a witness is not treated well. There is simply no incentive to stop and become a witness. The court order surely won't be the end of it as then the civil case comes a long...


Except for human decency and a sense of community.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2013 4:46 pm 
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boardposter wrote:
Insurance companies makes tones of money from everyone. Justice department gets paid well from many different sources.


People employed in professions related to an accident, and those that witness an accident are apples and oranges. Private citizens stop at an accident to render aid and if they witnessed the accident to provide an impartial account. I do so, and I hope others have the courtesy to do so when and if I am involved in an accident.

boardposter wrote:
A good person stopping and signing a paper to be a witness is not treated well. There is simply no incentive to stop and become a witness. The court order surely won't be the end of it as then the civil case comes a long...


A "good" person does whats right because it is what's right, not because they are hoping to be compensated for it, or compelled to do it.

I've witnessed a number of accidents when on my own time and have stopped, assisted where possible and provided a written statement to the attending Officer. Most of these matters were resolved with no further need for my involvement.

On the other side of the coin I have been involved in accidents where people failed to stop and assist, and witnesses left not wanting to get involved. THESE matters turn into a "he said, she said" and are much more labour intensive for police and the insurance companies.

All I can say is that I hope any witnesses to an accident YOU are involved in are more community minded than you are.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:14 pm 
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OPS Copper wrote:
We had a JP here issue witness warrants for all the missing witnesses. We had a grand old time going and arresting and taking them to jail. All these people who were to busy sure made time when the spent 18 hours in jail waiting for court. We also made sure that we attended their places of work to arrest them. (which is totally allowed as you do not get to chose the time or place to get arrested and rarely is it convenient ). And remember the warrants never dissappear. You could have a trip booked to a vacation and get hooked up at the airport. I am going to guess in most cases the vacation is ruined.(again happens lots in the winter here)

I wish it happened more.


OPS


Why on earth would you wish such misery on people? How is it making this a better province if some poor bugger can't go to Orlando 12 years after he failed to attend a hearing over a $500 bent fender? Should executing an arrest warrant really be "a grand old time?" I can't say I'm very sorry to see the use of the past tense in this.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 2:50 am 
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hk111 wrote:
Why on earth would you wish such misery on people? How is it making this a better province if some poor bugger can't go to Orlando 12 years after he failed to attend a hearing over a $500 bent fender? Should executing an arrest warrant really be "a grand old time?" I can't say I'm very sorry to see the use of the past tense in this.


You're in traffic on the highway and you're patiently waiting. The road is on a slight hill. The driver in front of you starts moving in reverse into your car. Who is at fault? Clearly the driver in front because he's carelessly moving backwards. Guess what? He doesn't see it that way. He is claiming you slammed into him while he was stopped. Who do you think the insurance company is going to believe? Not you. The driver behind is always at fault. Now the driver who rolled into you just filed an insurance claim with his company and is looking to get paid on your behalf. You're now looking at a possible ticket and an insurance increase for many years.

It happened to Herman Sham. Mr. Sham was traveling on the 401 when traffic came to a complete stop. The driver in front of him, Ragurub Yogarajah, rolled backwards till he hit the car behind him. Ragurub denied the whole thing and was claiming he was hit from behind. He stuck to his story all the way to the insurance company when he filed a claim against Mr. Sham. Luckily, Mr. Sham was equipped with a dash cam and had the whole ordeal on film.

Ragurub Yogarajah allegedly had 26 Highway Traffic Act violations on his record and allegedly had family working in the massage therapy business in Markham which conveniently has a commercial on youtube advertising the fact that insurance will gladly cover your costs from an auto accident. Because of Mr. Sham's dash cam, Mr. Yogarajah was eventually charged with fraud.

Despite taking place on the 401 in the middle of traffic, you know how many witnesses stopped? ZERO. If there were no dash cams involved , Mr. Sham would be looking at charges under the HTA, serious insurance increases for many years, loss of income, and many sleepless nights. This is why you suck it up and attend trials. You should be proud to be a witness.


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Re: Am I entitled to get paid to show as a witness?
PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2013 3:57 am 
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Because I believe in the system and believe there should be consequences to actions. When courts say you must show up for court and don't a warrant is a consequence. And I won't lose any sleep over someone missing a vacation because they did not want to go to court.
It is not about making the province better. It's about respecting the justice system.

A summons is not a request to come to court.

Simple. Show up in court when you are ordered to and you won't miss a vacation.

Ops


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