The Royal Commission holds formal public hearings to hear evidence about child sexual abuse within institutions. The hearings do not focus on individual cases, but instead focus on case studies of how institutions have responded to allegations and proven instances of child sexual abuse. More about public hearings.

Case studies

Attend in person

Are you a witness?


The Royal Commission held its first public hearing on Monday, 16 September 2013. All of the case studies held since that date can be viewed on the Case Studies page. For each case study you can view the witness list, transcripts, exhibits, images and associated submissions.

The Royal Commission’s public hearings are open to the public. They can also be watched or listened to live via this website from the Case Studies page. For more information about how to access and view the webcast please click here.

To find out when the next hearing will take place, view the Royal Commission’s schedule. If you are planning to attend in person, visit the Attend in person page so you understand the formalities associated with attending in person.

It’s important to remember that the Royal Commission is not a court of law and cannot make decisions about criminal matters. Rather, the Commissioners will deliver recommendations based on what they discover during a public hearing.

To find out more about recommendations and findings that have been made following public hearings, visit the Findings page.

Applications for Leave to Appear at a public hearing

If you believe you have a direct or substantial interest in a public hearing, you may apply for leave to appear in the hearing by completing an Application for Leave to Appear.

Witnesses summonsed to give evidence in a public hearing would normally only apply for leave to appear if they wish to participate beyond giving evidence—for example, to cross examine other witnesses.

Successful applications will be determined in advance of the public hearing date.

Please send completed applications to