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Legal Information: Wisconsin

Statutes: Wisconsin

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July 16, 2020

895.45 Service representatives for adult abusive conduct complainants

(1) Definitions. In this section:

(a) “Abusive conduct” means domestic abuse, as defined under s. 49.165(1)(a), 813.12(1)(am), or 968.075(1)(a), harassment, as defined under s. 813.125(1)(am), sexual exploitation by a therapist under s. 940.22, sexual assault under s. 940.225, child abuse, as defined under s. 813.122(1)(a), or child abuse under ss. 948.02 to 948.11.

(b) “Complainant” means an adult who alleges that he or she was the subject of abusive conduct or who alleges that a crime has been committed against him or her.

(c) “Service representative” means an individual member of an organization or victim assistance program who provides counseling or support services to complainants or petitioners and charges no fee for services provided to a complainant under sub. (2) or to a petitioner under s. 813.122.

(2) Right to be present. A complainant has the right to select a service representative to attend, with the complainant, hearings, depositions and court proceedings, whether criminal or civil, and all interviews and meetings related to those hearings, depositions and court proceedings, if abusive conduct is alleged to have occurred against the complainant or if a crime is alleged to have been committed against the complainant and if the abusive conduct or the crime is a factor under s. 767.41 or is a factor in the complainant’s ability to represent his or her interest at the hearing, deposition or court proceeding. The complainant shall notify the court orally, or in writing, of that selection. A service representative selected by a complainant has the right to be present at every hearing, deposition and court proceeding and all interviews and meetings related to those hearings, depositions and court proceedings that the complainant is required or authorized to attend. The service representative selected by the complainant has the right to sit adjacent to the complainant and confer orally and in writing with the complainant in a reasonable manner during every hearing, deposition or court proceeding and related interviews and meetings, except when the complainant is testifying or is represented by private counsel. The service representative may not sit at counsel table during a jury trial. The service representative may address the court if permitted to do so by the court.

(3) Failure to exercise right not grounds for appeal. The failure of a complainant to exercise a right under this section is not a ground for an appeal of a judgment of conviction or for any court to reverse or modify a judgment of conviction.