Participating in Virtual Courtroom via Zoom
Due to the COVID pandemic, some court proceedings are being held remotely by videoconference (video link) or by audioconference (telephone).
Below are instructions to help you to participate in virtual court.
Recording of court matters by video or audio is strictly prohibited without preauthorization, as per the Courts of Justice Act.
If you have questions or need to speak to staff about virtual court, you can email Provincial Offences Court.
Zoom virtual court links
Refer to the web address provided in your written notice, or use one of the following links for matters scheduled for:
Phone number: +1-647-558-0588 (Canada)
Meeting ID: 577 979 5028
Phone number: +1-647-558-0588 (Canada)
Meeting ID: 873 939 2401
Rules of engagement for virtual court participation
Although your court matter is occurring virtually, expectations and requirements surrounding conduct and professional behaviour in the courtroom remain the same as if you were attending the courtroom in person.
The following rules apply for virtual court participation:
- Sign into the Zoom meeting ten minutes before your court matter to ensure you're ready when your matter is called and to avoid interruptions to the proceedings
- When signing into the meeting, use your legal first and last name
- Ensure your camera is on once you have entered the virtual courtroom. It's mandatory that you participate by video as your scheduled virtual court matter can't be completed by audio only.
- Ensure you remain muted for the duration of your attendance unless you've been called upon to speak on the record. If you urgently need to alert the court that you wish to speak during your matter, unmute your microphone using the instructions outlined below.
- State your name for the record before speaking in court
- Failure to remain muted or any disruptions to court proceedings may result in individuals being removed from the meeting
- If other matters are set for the same timeframe there may be a waiting period before your matter is spoken to
- Join the meeting from a quiet and private area to ensure that background distrations from your surroundings can't be seen or heard and your privacy can be maintained
- Join the meeting from a well-lit space and avoid the use of filters or backgrounds to ensure that your image and identity is clear during proceedings
- Make sure that you're connected to the internet or a WiFi hotspot. Otherwise, you won't be able to use Zoom. If you lose connectivity, immediately try to rejoin as your attendance is required. If you're unable to rejoin, call 905-687-6590 ext. 1592.
- You must be dressed appropriately for the formal court environment
- No food, beverages, gum chewing or smoking is permitted.Â You may have water during your court proceeding.
- It's ideal to use a headset with a microphone to reduce background noise and improve clarity
- Close all other applications so you're not distracted or interrupted during the proceeding
- Cell phones must be muted
- Don't carry conversations while court is in session
- If joining from a portable device, it should be either fully charged or plugged into an external power source to avoid disruptions
- If you have technical difficulties during the matter, use the "virtual hand" on Zoom or press *9 if joining by telephone
- It's an offence to record, photograph, screenshot or live stream court matters
- In accordance with Section 136 of the Courts of Justice Act, it's an offence for members of the public to copy, record, publish, broadcast or disseminate any court matter or any portion of it, including a matter that is conducted over videoconference or teleconference without leave of the court. Members of the public and all other persons in the courtroom must comply with the terms of the Protocol on the Use of Electronic Devices in the Courtroom.
Instructions for joining a Zoom meeting
The following instructions are for using Zoom with Windows. These are instructions for downloading Zoom for Mac.
Zoom viewing options
- Viewing options
There are two viewing options: gallery or speaker view.
- Gallery view displays everyone in equally sized screens that will adjust in size based on the number of participants.
- Speaker view displays the individual who is speaking in a large screen, with the other participants displayed in smaller screens above. The system automatically changes to display the individual speaking.
Each meeting participant can select their own view. To change the view, click the 'Gallery view / speaker view' button in the upper-right section of the screen.
- Control bar
The control bar is located at the bottom of the screen and disappears when not in use. To activate the control bar, simply move your mouse or touch the screen if using a touchscreen.
The mute button mutes or unmutes your microphone. We ask that you mute your microphone when you're not talking.
- Start / stop video
The start / stop video is how you turn on / off your camera. If your camera is off, a red line will appear through the camera icon. Click on the camera icon to turn your camera on.
Ensure your camera is on once you have entered the virtual courtroom. It's mandatory that you participate by video as your scheduled virtual court matter can't be completed by audio only.
Click 'participants' to see a list of all participants in the meeting. When you click that, a new window will open to the right of the main screen.