Tips Avoiding DUI

Labour Day is a holiday that not only marks the end of summer, but also serves as the start of the fall and winter holiday season. Celebrating the fall and winter holidays with family and friends normally means drinking alcoholic beverages to celebrate. Drinking is perfectly acceptable, so long as you remember to do so responsibly.

Where many people go wrong, is they mistakenly assume after drinking they can still drive. With police setting up checkpoints during various holidays, not getting caught is highly unlikely. Who wants to end a fun holiday celebration by being arrested and charged with a DUI?

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It is essential to remember domestic violence is viewed as a criminal offence according to the Criminal Code of Canada. However, in certain situations, there are times when domestic violence cases can intersect across both criminal and family courts.

How Criminal Courts Address Domestic Violence

Criminal courts prosecute those accused of domestic violence as a criminal offence. When a victim files a formal complaint with the police, they are duty bound to fully investigate the claim. Initially, they make take the suspect into custody if they believe the victim’s claim is valid.

Once a formal complaint has been filed, the victim no longer has the ability to drop the charges. Sometimes victims feel remorse afterwards and believe that if they do not drop the chargers they will only make their domestic situation worse. Yet, the Crown’s objective is to ensure the accused is held accountable for their actions.

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Legalized Marijuana for Recreational

When Prime Minister Trudeau took office, his initial goal was to have recreational marijuana legalized by July 1, 2018 – Canada Day. However, there have been delays in the process of passing the law.

Before Canadians despair, the Cannabis Act was passed by Canadian senators back in June, along with some added amendments to the Act. Now the bill has been sent back to the House of Commons, where Parliament will review the amendments and vote on their approval.

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Types of Domestic Violence

In Ontario, there are two different types of protective orders a victim of domestic violence can seek: Restraining Orders and Peace Bonds. It is essential to understand the difference between these two, how they are obtained, and what they entail for the plaintiff, defendant, and any minor children the couple may share.

Restraining Orders

Restraining orders are issued following guidelines contained within the Family Law Act. There is a specific application process and procedure, which all are handled by the Family Law Courts. Anyone that has been the victim of domestic violence can seek a restraining order.

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Some people might mistakenly assume an impaired driving charge is only a minor criminal offence. However, what these people do not realize is the law views this type offence as rather serious. You were behind the wheel of a motorized vehicle and driving while under impairment.

You not only were putting your own life at risk, but also the lives of other pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists on the road. To give you an idea of how serious the law regards impaired driving offences, it is a good idea to review the potential punishments if one is convicted and found guilty of the offence.

According to the Criminal Code of Canada, Section 255(1) is as follows:

Every one who commits an offence under Section 253 or 254 is guilty of an indictable offence or and offence punishable on summary conviction and is liable,

  • Whether the offence is prosecuted by indictment or punishable on summary conviction, to the following minimum punishment, namely,
  • For a first offence, to a fine of not less than $1,000,
  • For a second offence, to imprisonment for not less than 30 days, and
  • For each subsequent offence, to imprisonment for not less than 120 days;
  • Where the offence is prosecuted by indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years; and
  • If the offence is punishable on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term of not more than 18 months.

As evident based upon the Criminal Code, even for a first-time offender, there is a fine of at least $1,000. It is also important to keep in mind, aside from fines and potential imprisonment periods, there are several other consequences of driving under the influence. These could include, but may not be limited to:

  • License Suspension/Revocation
  • Driver Education Courses
  • Increase Insurance Rates
  • Loss of Time from Work
  • License Reinstatement Fees
  • Interlock Device Installation and Monitoring Fees
  • Vehicle Towing and Impound Fees

A conviction for an impaired driving offence is also recorded on your criminal record. This could make it more difficult to travel abroad. Some countries will prohibit you from entering their country even when the only offence on your record is for impaired driving.

Hopefully, now you can see that an impaired driving offence is a serious offence you should be concerned about. Even though you might feel like the prosecution has a solid case against you, this is not always an accurate assessment.

In prior cases, some of my clients’ rights were violated in some manner, so this provided a viable strategy to defend against their charges. In other cases, the clients were not actually impaired due to alcohol or drugs.

For these reasons, it is always in your bests interests to consult with a qualified Toronto criminal defence lawyer to discuss your different options and strategies. Please feel free to contact me, Jeff Hershberg, at 416-428-7360 to arrange a consultation appointment today.