It’s one of those things that most lawyers have had to deal with at one time or another in personal injury cases. The client (plaintiff or defendant), or an important witness, might be, as we call it, a “resident of the State.” That is, they may be in jail.
If the testimony is important for your case, you have the burden to get it. A judge may not be very forgiving if you did not do the legwork to arrange for the prisoner’s testimony. You don’t want to have to ask for a postponement unless it is absolutely necessary.
You’d think it would be a simple matter to get someone transferred from a jail to courthouse (after all, they probably took the reverse trip at some time in the past). Sometimes it is easy, sometimes it is not. How do you get them out of jail (however briefly)? File a writ of habeas corpus ad testificandum. A writ is a written command. Habeas corpus is a Latin phrase that means “that you have the body.” Ad testificandum is another Latin phrase which refers to oral testimony, usually before a court. Put it all together, and it is essentially a command that a person be released from jail for testimony at court.