What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)



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  1. #1
    Brian's Avatar
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    What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Please note that I'm no longer maintaining this document. I have moved out of the country, and I am no longer current in Ontario law and procedures. Please consult a lawyer for true legal advice.

    It's been almost four years since I wrote the original post, and almost 2 since the last update. I can't edit the original post anymore due to a character limit, so this new thread is the result.

    I may or may not respond to questions posed in this thread or in private messages/email. It's nothing personal, I just don't always have the time to answer.
    Updates in red. First draft, Version 2.0

    WARNING! LONG AND POTENTIALLY BORING! (This is what happens when you're bored at work )

    I've compiled this guide to help those of you who want to take your tickets to court. It has some answers to common (and not so common) questions. I've made a number of revisions to the first version of this document. I hope this version is more organized and easier to read. Feel free to correct any mistakes, or to suggest any topics/improvements. This has a lot of information that's also on the "Fight your speeding tickets" website.

    DISCLAIMER: The usual - This information is not legal advice. This information is accurate to the best of my knowledge, but I am not responsible for any consequences that may result from your using or misusing this information. Blah blah blah, etc.

    Handy references:
    -http://www.fyst.ca/ <- This is a really good read, and I suggest that everyone read it.
    -The Bora Laskin Law Library at the University of Toronto is open to the public, and is an excellent source of information. Just be aware that the staff there cannot give you legal advice.
    -"The Law of Traffic Offences", 2nd Edition by Scott C. Hutchison & John G. Marko, published by Carswell, 1998.
    -www.canlii.org/ <- Free access to case law and judgements in Canada (not a complete reference, though).
    -http://www.e-laws.gov.on.ca/html/sta...es_90h08_e.htm <- Highway Traffic Act (HTA)
    -http://www.escortradar.com/errors.htm <- Common traffic radar errors. However, I don't know how credible this would be if used as evidence in court.

    Public Libraries may also have some case law resources available that you can look up. Ask your local branch for details.


    NEVER choose the option "Plead guilty with an explanation."
    This is a waste of your time. By pleading guilty, you have admitted to the offence in question, and no plea-bargaining is allowed. The Justice cannot change or reduce the charge. The charge will be entered against your record as is. The amount of fine you pay might be reduced, but that's it. You might as well just pay the ticket at face value.

    It is far better to set a trial date (or even a first appearance). Even if you don't intend to actually fight your ticket in a trial, this option will allow you to plea-bargain a lesser charge (with reduced fines and possibly reduced demerit points). The crown prosecutor is almost always open to accepting plea-bargains to save time and money. Plus, there is always the chance that the officer doesn't show up, in which case you are pretty much off the hook.

    In the event that you chose the option to plead guilty with an explanation but now want a trial instead, you can simply go to your scheduled appearance in court and indicate your desire to plead not guilty and request a trial. This is your right, and it cannot be denied.

    If you intend on fighting your ticket in a trial, record all relevant information relating to the offence as soon as possible. The human memory is very fragile, and with court dates being scheduled as far back as 2 years, you will want to keep some record of the event. Important details include, but are not limited to: weather, location, direction, speed, time of day, date, vehicles in the vicinity, conversation between you and the officer(s), witnesses (if any), and an 'incident reconstruction' sketch if possible.

    MAIN INDEX
    Section 1) Court dates
    1.1) How do I set a court date?
    1.2) How long does it take to receive a trial notice?
    1.3) How do I change my court date?
    1.4) What do I do at a "first appearance"?
    1.5) What do I do if I have received a summons?


    Section 2) Options before your Court date
    2.1) Preparation and Disclosure
    2.1.1) How do I obtain disclosure?
    2.1.2) What do I do if the disclosure is incomplete or unclear?
    2.1.3) What do I do if they haven't given me disclosure after I asked for it?
    2.2) 11b Charter challenge
    2.2.1) How much delay does there have to be before I can make an 11b challenge?
    2.2.2) How do I make an 11b challenge?


    Section 3) Options on your Court date
    3.1) General procedure and pre-trial options
    3.1.1) What are my options if the officer did not show up?
    3.1.2) What are my options if the officer did show up?
    3.1.3) Making an 11b challenge if you filed all the paperwork
    3.1.4) Making an 11b challenge if you didn't file all the paperwork
    3.2) Procedure during trial
    3.2.1) Cross examination tips


    Section 4) Offences and Defences
    4.1) Classification of offences, and valid defences
    4.1.1) Defence of necessity
    4.1.2) De minimis non curat lex
    4.2) Fighting a speeding charge
    4.2.1) Multi-officer speed traps
    4.3) Fighting a 'careless driving' charge
    4.4) Basic Rules of evidence


    Section 5) Random Miscellany (may be combined into other sections at a later date)
    5.1)(Speeding) The officer reduced the ticket at the scene. If I take it to trial, can I be charged for the actual speed I was going?
    5.2) The officer made a mistake on the ticket! Can I get it thrown out?
    5.3) What qualifications are required to be a Justice of the Peace?
    5.4) What qualifications are required to be a Paralegal?
    5.5) I didn't read this until now, and my trial is very soon! What can I do?
    5.6) What do I do if I've been Bill 203'd?
    Last edited by Rob MacLennan; 01-24-2012 at 03:27 PM.

  2. #2
    Brian's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Section 1) Court Dates
    Upon receiving a ticket for a traffic offense, you usually have five options available to you:
    -The first option is to just pay the ticket. If you truly believe that you deserved this ticket and are willing to accept all the associated penalties that go along with it (most notably insurance increases), then you can just follow the payment instructions on the back of the ticket.
    -The second option is to plead guilty with an explanation, as I mentioned above, this should never be used.
    -The third option is to request a trial date. I will cover this option in detail in the rest of the document. Please see section 1.1.
    -The fourth option is to setup a 'first attendance' with the prosecutor. This is a possibility if you are only planning on accepting a plea-bargain. This does not apply for some jurisdictions. Please see section 1.4.
    -The fifth option is to ignore the ticket. You will be deemed to not dispute the charge, and a conviction will be entered against you. You will receive a notice of conviction and fine in the mail within a month or so. This has been deemed constitutional (R. v. Pilipovic, [1996] O.J. No. 3139).

    There is a sixth option, which may be your only option if you have a received a "summons" to court. This is usually reserved for serious traffic offences charged under Part III of the Provincial Offences Act, and it's to make sure that you show up in court. Please see section 1.5.

    1.1) How do I set a court date?
    If you want to fight your ticket, you must ask for a trial date. The procedure is fairly simple. Bring your ticket with you to any Provincial Offences Office within 15 days of receiving the ticket. At the courthouse, you will fill out a "Notice of Intention to Appear" (NIA) form, which states that you intend to appear in court to challenge your ticket. Just be careful of one thing: on the NIA form, there will be a yes/no check box stating something to the effect of "At the trial I intend to challenge the evidence of the provincial offences officer who completed the Certificate of Offence: yes/no". MAKE SURE that you choose to challenge the charging officer's evidence or else the officer doesn't have to show up, and any evidence the officer has will be deemed 'undisputable'. You can also choose to have your trial held in English or French, and you can also request an interpreter for any language if necessary. Make sure your address at the MTO is up to date, because they will send your notice of trial to the address on file.

    Even if you don't actually plan on going to trial, you should still request a trial date. There is always the chance that the officer will not show up, or that your ticket will be scheduled so far away that it can be dropped based on Section 11b of the charter. Failing that, you still get to plea-bargain, or if your ticket was already reduced, you can plead guilty to the charge on the ticket instead of the actual speed (see section 5.1 for more details). The only exception to this is if you were ticketed really far away from where you live. Even though you can request a trial date at any Provincial Offences Office, your court date will take place in the jurisdiction where the ticket was issued. This means that if you get a ticket out in the middle of nowhere, your court date will also be out in the middle of nowhere. Make your decision to take the ticket to trial accordingly. Alternatively, you could hire someone to represent you (traffic lawyer, or a paralegal - please see section 5.4 for more information on paralegals).

    Another note, if you were nabbed by one of those multi-officer speed trap operations, or you were paced from an airplane, you should strongly consider taking your ticket to trial! All officers present in the operation must show up for court in order for the crown to have a case. This is because one officer cannot testify for the actions of anyone but him/herself. Please see section 4.2.1 for more detail.

    1.2) How long does it take to receive a trial notice?
    Once you have submitted your Notice of Intention to Appear, it can take anywhere from a few weeks to multiple months before you receive your trial notice. This depends on how busy the court office is, and what the court scheduling is like at the court where your trial will take place. If you have not received notice within 3 months, it is standard procedure to call the office to check on the status. Do not hope that your ticket has "fallen through the cracks." It is very possible that your notice was mailed out, but was never delivered. In this case, you will be convicted in absentia, and will have to file an appeal to reopen the case (a big pain).

    1.3) How do I change my court date?
    Once you have received your trial notice, you can still change the date. In order to change your court date, you must make a motion to do so. Go to the courthouse and tell the clerk that you would like to change your court date. I do not believe that you can call in and request this, but it may depend on the courthouse. They will give you a generic 'motion' form which you must fill out (state what you want to motion and your reasons for doing so) and they will schedule you an appearance in front of a judge/justice. This appearance will be at the courthouse and scheduled at the same time as other people's trials, but it will not be a trial. You will usually go near the start, since motions take very little time.

    On the day of your motion, when you are called up, state your name for the court reporter, and then tell the judge/justice that you would like to motion for an adjournment and your reasons why. The prosecution can object to your request, but it is ultimately the decision of the justice/judge. If your request is granted, another date suitable to both parties will be chosen. Generally, you can only adjourn your court date once. Furthermore, they usually don't send you a notice of the change in court date, so make sure you do not forget when your new court date has been scheduled.

    1.4) What do I do at a "first appearance"?
    A first appearance is not a trial date (you shouldn't be going to trial on that day). You have a chance to speak/bargain with the prosecution about your particular charge. They will almost always offer you a plea-bargain. If you accept, you can usually accept this plea-bargain on that day, so you do not have to come back for your original trial date. If you decline the plea-bargain, you will go to your original trial date as scheduled. If you have not already asked for a trial date, one can be arranged at your first appearance. You can request a first appearance by asking in person at the court house, although most courthouses will allow you to schedule one by phone.

    1.5) What do I do if I have received a summons?
    You will receive a summons to court instead of a regular ticket if you have been charged under Part III of the Provincial Offences Act (POA), instead of the more common Part I. This can happen for a multitude of reasons, but primarily because charges under Part I of the POA have a penalty limit of $500 and no potential for imprisonment. Also, the 30 day limitation period for Part I offences may have expired and the officer intends to charge you 'after the fact'. Usually, charges laid under Part III of the POA are for very serious charges such as Careless Driving, driving under the influence, speeding 50km/h+ over the speed limit (stunting/bill203), etc.

    The officer has the power to write you a summons at the scene of the offence. However, a summons can also be served at a later date at your home/place of residence. In extreme cases, a warrant for your arrest can also be issued by a Justice. Generally, the date for your court appearance (note, this is NOT a trial) will be fairly soon - usually within a month, sometimes within weeks of receiving your summons. At this 'court date', basically all that happens is the officer brings the facts to the justice and swears that they are true. The justice makes sure you understand the nature and severity of the charges against you, and that's basically it. You will then receive a date for your trial. Sometimes the prosecution will offer you a plea-bargain on the day of, in the interest of (the court's) time and money.

    An interesting side note - any person with reasonable cause can initiate proceedings under Part III of the provincial offences act - you can, in effect, lay charges (including criminal charges) yourself. However, the procedure requires time and a bit of money, to prevent frivolous charges.



    Section 2) Options before your Court date
    The rest of this document will assume that you have chosen to take your ticket to trial, and that you have correctly marked on your NIA form that you intend to challenge the charging officer's evidence. At this point, I will also assume that you have received your trial notice, and that a date has been set.

    2.1) Preparation and Disclosure
    Instead of idly passing the time until your court date, you should be preparing for your court date. Do not leave preparation until the last minute, as the court system (as with any government institution) can be quite slow. The first thing you should do once you have received your trial notice is to ask for disclosure. Asking for disclosure is your right as a defendant, and it is the means through which you will discover what evidence the prosecution has against you. Obtaining disclosure is critical for choosing a course of action. You cannot even start to prepare your defence until you know what evidence the prosecution will be relying on. Even if you feel you have been caught 'in the act' with no defence, obtaining disclosure may reveal avenues of defence that were not obvious or even known to you. Conversely, obtaining disclosure may reveal a bulletproof case, and you may instead wish to accept a plea-bargain rather than waste time with a trial.

    2.1.1) How do I obtain disclosure?
    In order to obtain disclosure, you must submit in writing (registered mail, fax, or personally delivered) your request for disclosure to the Provincial Prosecutor's office. The address is on the back of your ticket. Be sure to include your full name, the offence date, and ticket/offence number in your request. Also, be specific in what evidence you ask for: e.g. "please send me: 1) Both sides of the officer's ticket, 2) the officer's notes on the day of the offence, 3) etc." If you just say "send me all evidence you will be relying on in the trial", they'll probably be lazy and not send you very much. If you happen to already be at the prosecutor's office, they may have a disclosure request form that you can use and submit right there. Just make sure you get a copy for yourself. In any event, the letter can be as simple as "My name is X and I am requesting disclosure for offence number Y that is to take place on Z date. Please provide to me the following: ."

    Please note, it is very important that you document all communication and contact you have with the Prosecutor's office. If you have a phone conversation, ask for names and keep records of the times and dates you spoke to people. If sending mail, use registered mail and keep the receipt and signature of the person who received it. For faxes, keep transmission records. If you submit your disclosure request in person, ask the clerk to make you a copy after it has been marked and signed as received. You want a paper trail documenting your actions, so in the event that the prosecution does not cooperate with you or claim they never received your request, you have proof of this. This is especially important if you intend to make an 11b charter challenge (see section 2.2).

    Once you have submitted your request for disclosure, it will usually be several weeks, sometimes a month or two, before it is ready. Usually the Prosecutor's office will call you (if you left a phone number on your request). However, sometimes they do not as they can be very busy. If it has been more than a month, you should call the Prosecutor's office to check on the status of your request. Usually, you will have to go into the office to pick it up.

    2.1.2) What do I do if the disclosure is incomplete or unclear?
    Generally, all that is in posession of the prosecutor's office will be a prosecution sheet, which usually only has things like a copy of the ticket, and the officer's notes. If your disclosure is incomplete, or you need more information, usually only the officer in question will have this information. For example, for a speeding charge, generally, only the officer will know which make and model radar unit he used, which he may or may not have written in his notes. If you need any other evidence, you have to ask the officer in question for this evidence. As before, document all contact you have with the officer. Write down the name(s) of who you spoke to, and the time and date of your call. If the officer gives you a hard time, tell the officer that the "Freedom of Information Act" (for Ontario) gives you the priviledge to obtain this information. If the officer still refuses, make note of this, and then read section 2.1.3.

    The same procedure applies for illegible or unclear disclosure. You will request 'disclosure disclosure' . This is very common, as many officers often use some kind of shorthand when writing their notes.

    2.1.3) What do I do if they haven't given me disclosure after I asked for it?
    There are two cases to consider. If you have asked for disclosure and received nothing, check to make sure the Prosecutor's office even got your request. If you followed the instructions in section 2.1.1, no more than two months should have passed since your original request. If the office claims they did not get your request, resubmit it (double check infraction numbers and addresses), again documenting every exchange. If the office tells you that your disclosure is not yet ready, ask them for an approximate time frame, so you don't have to keep calling them every few weeks. If the office keeps giving you the runaround, or your court date is coming up very soon, you may want to consider an 11b charter challenge (see Section 2.2).

    If you only received partial disclosure, and the Prosecutor's office or the officer refused to give you additional information, you can use it as ammunition if you intend to make an 11b charter challenge (see section 2.2). Also, on your court date, if the information that was refused is deemed vital to your defence by the Justice, then the justice can schedule an adjournment and force the officer to give this information to you. Be careful, though, as if the Justice decides that the information is not vital to your defence, then the trial will continue on that same day. Be ready!

    2.2) 11b Charter challenge
    The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees under section 11 subsection b, that "any person charged with an offence has the right to be tried within a reasonable time." This section will deal with the inner workings of 11b, and how you can use it to your advantage.

    2.2.1) How much delay does there have to be before I can make an 11b challenge?
    While it is true that the Charter of Rights explicitly states that "any person charged with an offence has the right to be tried within a reasonable time," the charter does not define explicitly what is considered to be a "reasonable time." The test for infringement was set out in the case of R. v. Morin [1992] 1 S.C.R. 771. The criteria used to see if your section 11b rights have been violated are as follows:

    1. the length of the delay; (you have to show that the length is unreasonable)
    2. waiver of time periods; (did you waive your section 11b rights?)
    3. the reasons for the delay, including
    (a) inherent time requirements of the case, (some cases have a huge amount of evidence to go through)
    (b) actions of the accused, (did you cause delay in any way? changing court dates, etc.)
    (c) actions of the Crown, (did the crown cause delay in any way? fail to give disclosure, changing the court date, etc.)
    (d) limits on institutional resources, and (if everyone is waiting 1 year for their court date, a 1 year wait time might not be seen as unreasonable).
    (e) other reasons for delay; and
    4. prejudice to the accused. (have you suffered any prejudice as a result of the delay?)

    There is no absolute time period wherein all 11b challenges will succeed. Whether or not your 11b challenge will succeed is up to the discretion of the JP (influenced of course, by how convincing your arguments are, as well as whether or not the JP is having a good day), although you could appeal the decision if you feel that the JP made a mistake in law in his/her ruling.

    2.2.2) How do I make an 11b challenge?
    If you are serious about making an 11b challenge on your own, I suggest you first start by reading the ruling in the R. v. Morin case. Also, there is an 11b decision digest available on Canlii that is also fairly helpful.

    The first step is to file a Notice of Constitutional Question, or Form 4f, with the crown prosecutor, The Attorney General of Ontario, and the Attorney General of Canada. This lets the court know that you intend to dispute the charge with a charter claim. Again, if mailing the forms, use registered mail. The most economical route is if you own a fax machine. Here are two examples of a sample form:

    Sample form from government website
    Sample from FYST

    You should ideally start your 11b charter challenge as soon as you are made aware of the violation of your rights. I would usually wait until disclosure is obtained, but this is not strictly necessary. In the event that the prosecution refuses to provide disclosure, or does not provide you with disclosure in a timely manner, you can use this as additional 'ammunition' in your 11b challenge. However, you should not leave the challenge until the last minute. Failure to do so can be constrewed as an implicit acceptance of the pace at which things are happening (Number 4 in the list in section 2.2.1). E.g.: You didn't say anything before your trial date, so you are implicitly agreeing that the time taken to bring your case to court is acceptable to you. Similarly, if you do not actively pursue the prosecution for your disclosure, your complacency can be seen in the same way. In any event, you must file these forms no later 15 days before your court date.

    Once you have filed these forms, You may be contacted by the Prosecutor's office to have your court date moved forward. This is rare, as the courts are usually quite backed up, but in the 'unlucky' event that this happens to you, you will pretty much have to abandon your 11b challenge, unless disclosure still has not been provided.

    At your court date, before court is in session, you should tell the prosecutor that you intend to make your 11b challenge. Sometimes, they will acquiesce, and you will be off the hook. Other times, they may fight you tooth and nail. Once court is in session and you are called, you must immediately motion for a stay of proceedings based on your section 11b charter rights (and explain why you feel your section 11b rights have been violated). You must make this motion pre-plea (i.e.: before you have plead guilty/not-guilty). If your motion is accepted, the justice will enter a 'stay of proceedings' based on a violation of your charter rights (you are off the hook). If your motion is denied, you will have to proceed to trial, so be ready.

    Also, please note that generally speaking, making an 11b challenge and accepting a plea-bargain are mutually exclusive. If your charter challenge fails, you will not be able to plea-bargain, and you must then make a plea of either guilty (accept the ticket at face value) or not-guilty (proceed to trial immediately).
    Last edited by Rob MacLennan; 01-24-2012 at 03:28 PM.

  3. #3
    Brian's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Section 3) Options on your court date
    Your day in court has arrived. Hopefully, you have done all your research, obtained disclosure, and done all your defence work. This section will cover what options are available to you on your court date.

    3.1) General procedure and pre-trial options
    The general procedure is to show up at least 15 minutes early for your court date. This will give you time to find your court room, speak to or plea-bargain with the crown prosecutor, and make your intentions known. Make sure you ask the prosecutor whether or not his/her witnesses are present, as this can determine your next course of action.

    When you speak to the prosecutor, if you tell them that you intend to plead not guilty, they will often get angry, confrontational, and even threatening. However, it's all a big act, so just ignore it and remain firm in your intention to plead not guilty. This is done on purpose, because they are trying to save time by making everyone plead guilty/accepting a plea-bargain. The fewer trials they have to go through, the sooner they can get out of there.

    3.1.1) What are my options if the officer did notshow up?
    Ask the crown if their witness (i.e. the officer(s)) is present, or is planning on showing up. If the officer isn't planning on showing up, then your charge will be dropped if you proceed to trial. Sometimes the crown may be sneaky and try to get you to plea-bargain, but if the officer is not present and is not going to show up, then do not accept the plea-bargain and ask for a trial. Your charge will be dropped - the crown cannot proceed to trial since they have no witness to back up the charge and would lose in a trial.

    3.1.2) What are my options if the officer did show up?
    Sometimes it is beneficial to speak to the officer before court is in session. I showed up early once, spoke to the officer, and he agreed to drop the charges after I explained my situation to him. Of course, this is the exception, not the norm, and you shouldn't count on it. In any event, you basically now have two options: accepting the plea-bargain (if any) offered, or proceeding to trial.

    Note that if the officer is present and you plan on proceeding to trial, sometimes the court runs out of time, and your case will be rescheduled to a later date. If this happens, you may wish to make an 11b charter challenge (see 2.2, 3.1.4, and 3.1.5).

    3.1.3) Pre-plea options
    Pre-plea means before you enter a plea of either 'guilty' or 'not guilty'. These challenges should be done after you are called up and say your name for the reporter, and before enterint a plea. There are several options that might be available to you. These are as follows:

    -challenging the charging document (errors on the ticket)
    -requesting an adjournment
    -making a charter challenge (11b or otherwise)

    Challenging the charging document must be done pre-plea. Failure to do so indicates an implicit acceptance of the charging document at face value. If there are any errors you would like to point out, make this known before you enter a plea. If the error is minor, it can be corrected on the spot. If the error is severe, it might nullify the charging document completely and get you off the hook. Even if the error is minor and can be corrected, you can still use this error to cast reasonable doubt on the officer's evidence.

    Requesting an adjournment can be done for many reasons, including, but not limited to, adjournment to obtain representation, adjournment to obtain disclosure, adjournment because you or a witness could not attend (due to sickness, being out of the country, etc.). Generally speaking, if you have a good reason and have not already requested an adjournment, the judge/justice will grant your request. However, it is not a guarantee, and you may be forced to make a plea anyways.

    Making a charter challenge usually requires that paperwork be filed in advance. The most common is 11b (right to be tried in a reasonable amount of time). See section 2.2, 3.1.4, and 3.1.5 for more details.


    3.1.4) Making an 11b challenge if you filed all the paperwork
    If you successfully filed all your paperwork for your 11b challenge, then you should inform the prosecutor that you intend to make an 11b motion. In some cases, if they feel your motion is very likely to succeed, they may just back down and drop the charges. Otherwise, wait until court has started. When you are called up to the stand, you will say your name for the court reporter, and then you will make your 11b motion pre-plea. See section 2.2.2 for more details.

    3.1.5) Making an 11b challenge if you didn't file all the paperwork
    If you didn't file any of the paperwork, you can still make an 11b challenge. However, you will have to ask for an adjournment to do so. Double check to make sure your witness is actually present (if the witness is not present, you could just proceed to trial and have your charge dropped). Tell the prosecutor that you intend to ask for an adjournment to file the paperwork necessary to make an 11b challenge. When you are called up, make your motion for an adjournment pre-plea. Explain that you failed to file the appropriate paperwork, and would like an adjournment to do so. Note that you will be basing the time period for your 11b challenge from the date of the offence to the first trial date. The time period from the first trial date to the second trial date will not count against your 11b rights, since you are the one who has caused the delay.

    3.2) Procedure during trial
    If you are planning on taking your case to trial and the officer is present, this section
    The FYST website has a good explanation of the general procedure. I have copied it here for your reference, and added some comments in bolded italics.
    Quote Originally Posted by FYST website
    -Do not talk in the spectator area
    -Do not wear a hat
    -Stand up when the judge enters or leaves the courtroom
    -Bow to the judge when you enter or leave the courtroom
    -Always address the judge as "Your Worship" or "Your Honour". Don't call him/her "you"; Judges should be addressed as "Your Honour", while Justices of the Peace should be addressed as "Your Worship." If you aren't sure, just stick with "Your Honour."
    -Show your respect. If you act like a 5-year-old kid, it will only make you look like a jerk and it is definitely not to your advantage;
    -Video and/or audio recordings are not allowed. Unobstrusive hand written notes for educational purposes is however permitted in the courtroom (if you are the defendant, you need to take notes).

    When the judge comes, rise (this is usually announced - "all rise" or something to that effect). Next the judge will dismiss the cases where the officer is not present, and the defendant showed up. If you are one of the lucky ones, he will call out your name, and announce that the province wishes to withdraw the charge. You then leave the court room with a big grin on your face! And there are cases where both the officer and the defendant don't show up. In which case, the province won't withdraw the charge and will convict the defendant in his absence. What a waste of opportunities!

    Next comes the "guilty with explanation" pleas. These are the quick cases. After these people are gone, there should not be many left in the court room.

    When the judge calls your name, you stand up.

    Usually it is the crown prosecutor who will call people up to the stand. When you are called, go up to the front and say your name for the court reporter. If you intend on making a motion pre-plea, you should do it now before entering a plea. If you have chosen to plea-bargain, the prosection will usually ask the JP if the deal made is acceptable. If yes, you will plead guilty to the lesser charge. For example, if you got a "Fail to stop, stop sign" ticket, it might be plea-bargained down to an "improper stop" charge, in which case you would plead not guilty to the first, but guilty to the second. The JP will ask if you are aware that you are waiving your right to a trial by pleading guilty, and that you understand your decision and the consequences. This is because pleading guilty to a charge you do not fully understand is an obstruction of justice. Once you plead guilty, the JP will then give you a chance to explain why you did what you did. This only affects how much time you have to pay (and how much you pay, for those variable fine offences), and not the fact that you are guilty. The JP will then decide how much time you have to pay (and what the fine is if it's a variable fine offence) and that's it, you are done.

    He/she will announce the offence you are being charged, e.g. "You are charged with the offence of speeding 130km/h in a 100km/h zone, contrary to the Highway Traffic Act section 128, how do you plead - guilty or not guilty?" If you have made this far, and have prepared your case, say "Not guilty! Your Worship." then take a seat at the counsellor's table on the left.

    First, it is the prosecution (the plaintiff) to present its case. The prosecutor will call his witness(es) to testify. The prosecutor will try to guide the witness by asking questions to elicit facts to prove its case. This is called "examination-in-chief", or "direct examination" in the American context. When the witness finishes, it is your turn to ask the witness questions. This is called "cross-examination". Cross-examination is the most important step since it is your opportunity to embarrass the prosecution and cast doubt on its case. If there are multiple witnesses for the prosecution, the next one will only be called when you are done cross-examining the first. This process repeats until all witnesses for the prosecution have finished testifying and have been cross-examined. This concludes the prosecution's case.

    It is now time for the defence to present its case. The process works pretty much the same, except that now the roles have switched. You call your witness(es), and the prosecutor does the cross-examining. You can testify for yourself, and the prosecutor will cross-examine you. This part is entirely optional. Unless you have some witness who is vital to your defence, it is usually recommended to just skip this part. If you have scored enough points in cross-examining the cop, don't waste your time to give your own defence. Remember, if you give your own defence, the prosecution will have the opportunity to cross-examine you. If you (and your witnesses) are not experienced, you might get screwed up there. Also note that you cannot be forced to testify against yourself. Being forced to testify against yourself is a violation of your charter rights (section 11c). Even something informal counts, for example, if the JP asks you, "Did you speed?" you do not have to answer because you would be testifying against yourself. If you are fighting a speeding ticket, it is usually best not to give your own defence. This is because the crown prosecutor will have a chance to cross-examine you and cast reasonable doubt on your testimony and credibility. For some charges (such as careless driving, fail to stop - amber light, etc.), you WANT to give your own defence because it is the easiest way to win.

    After the defendant's testimony, both parties will give their closing arguments. You should make a summary of points you raised, and WHY you should be innocent. The summary should be brief and concise, and you should not introduce new arguments here. It usually starts with "Your Worship, I sincerely ask that a verdict of not guilty be entered based on the grounds that..." then you state your reason(s).

    Then the judge will deliver the verdict, which is either guilty or not guilty. If you are not guilty, you are free to go. If you are guilty, the judge will pass the sentence. The judge will already have in his/her mind how much the fine should be, but he/she may ask your submission on how much time you need to pay. You should be prepared to explain your situation to the judge if you need extended time. Sometimes you are legally guilty but you had a good case, the judge will pass a "suspended sentence". Which means if you do not commit the same offence again in a certain time period, your fine is waived.
    3.2.1) Cross examination tips
    The FYST website has an excellent section on how to prepare for a trial, including what can and cannot be said in trial, rules of evidence, and handy tips/references. I won't copy this section here, but please read it if you are planning on going to trial:

    http://www.fyst.ca/appndxb.htm
    Last edited by Rob MacLennan; 01-24-2012 at 03:30 PM.

  4. #4
    Brian's Avatar
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    Section 4) Offences and Defences
    This section will cover the validity of certain defences, as well as possible defences to some common offences. You should definitely read this section if you are planning on going to trial, or if aren't sure if you have a valid defence.

    4.1) Classification of offences, and valid defences
    What constitutes a valid defence depends on what category the offence falls into. For offences which fall under the Provincial Offences Act, there are basically three categories of offences:

    -Absolute liability offences are offences in which the prosecution only has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the offence for you to be found guilty. The defence of "due diligence" does not apply, and the mental state/intention of the accused is irrelevant. The primary way to defeat such a charge is to cast reasonable doubt on the crown's evidence. Speeding is an example of an absolute liability offence. For example, If proven beyond a reasonable doubt that you were speeding, you will be found guilty, regardless of your intent (or lack thereof) to speed.

    -Strict liability offences are offences in which the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the offence, but allow for a defence of "due diligence". That is, a valid defence to a strict liability offence would be that you did all that was reasonably possible to avoid committing the offence, but it happened anyways. This takes into consideration what a 'reasonable person' would do in such a circumstance. Note that the definition of a "normal reasonable person" is constantly changing, and relies heavily on circumstance and case law. For example, disobeying traffic signs is a strict liability offence.

    -Full mens rea (translated from latin as 'guilty mind') offences are offences in which the prosecution must prove not only that you committed the offence beyond a reasonable doubt, but also of your intent to commit the offence. For example, evading police, is an example of this type of offence. If the prosecution cannot show that you were of a 'guilty mind', you cannot be found guilty. Driving Dangerously, or Willfully avoiding a police officer are examples of this offence. The crown must show that your actions were not only dangerous, but also done intentionally.

    Who decides what category an offence falls into? Generally speaking, there is a presumption that any regulatory offence (pretty much anything outside the Criminal Code) will be classified as a strict liability offence. In order to have an offence classified in one of the other categories, someone (usually the prosecution) must persuade the court why it should be reclassified. Of course, the burden of persuation falls on the party in question that is seeking to have the offence reclassified. I won't go into this in any more detail, since all of the common offences have been classified one way or another in various courts.

    The following is a list of common traffic offences for each of the categories. This list is by no means exhaustive. I have not provided case law references (there are a lot of them), but I can if there is sufficient interest.
    Absolute liability traffic offences:
    -Failing to stop at a red light
    -Speeding
    -Vehicle Equipment Rules
    -Driving while suspended

    Strict liability traffic offences:
    -Failing to yield right of way to pedestrian on crosswalk
    -Driving while suspended (Yes, this appears twice, depends on the circumstances)
    -Failing to remain
    -Speeding (generally considered Absolute liability, but in Nova Scotia, there have been some exceptions)
    -Unsafe turn and other turning offences
    -Driving without insurance
    -Failing to obey traffic signs and signals
    -Failing to wear seatbelts
    -Crossing solid line on roadway (not applicable in Ontario)

    Full Mens Rea traffic offences:
    -Willfully avoiding police officer
    -Failing to stop on signalling by police officer
    -Defacing or removing highway notices

    Ignorance of the law is not a valid defence. Saying that you didn't know something was illegal won't save you from getting convicted. I will point out, however, that there is a difference between ignorance, and not being given notice. For example, if you made an illegal left-turn where there were signs clearly marking this fact, saying you didn't know or didn't see the sign will not save you. However, if the sign was physically not present (removed or obscured), then the fact that the sign was not present/clear could save you from being convicted.

    There are a number of defences (some exotic) that can apply to all three categories of offence. These include automatism, duress, necessity, insanity, de minimis non curat lex (the law does not concern itself with trifles), self-defence, and act of God. These 'exotic' defences can also apply to criminal offences as well. However, many of these 'exotic' defences require expert witnesses to give testimony. For example, if you plead insanity, you would require a psychiatrist or otherwise qualified expert witness to prove your mental state at the time of the offence.

    While these 'exotic' defences are technically applicable to all offences, the circumstances which would allow their use generally does not occur in traffic offences. The two exceptions to this are the defence of necessity, and de minimis non curat lex, which will be covered in the following two sections.

    4.1.1) Defence of necessity
    The defence of necessity can be used as a justification for almost all offences. Two common offences in which this defence is used include (but are not limited to) speeding and running stop signs/red lights. In the case of R. v. Perka ([1984] 2 S.C.R. 232), the Supreme Court outlined the four criteria for using this defence:
    -a) There must be 'clear and imminent peril' calling out for action without deliberation
    -b) There must be no reasonable legal alternative to the illegal act
    -c) The harm inflicted by the illegal action must be less than would be present if the 'clear and imminent peril' were manifested
    -d) If the harm which forms the basis for the defence was clearly foreseeable and avoidable at an earlier time without any illegality, the defence is unavailable.

    For example, speeding might have been justified if you were merging on the highway, the lane was ending, a large truck was barreling down behind you, the cars weren't letting you in, and there was no shoulder to stop on. If you had stopped, you would have been rear-ended by the truck, and if you hadn't sped up to merge, you would have run out of lane and been run over by the truck.

    4.1.2) De minimis non curat lex
    De minimis non curat lex roughly translates from latin into english as "The law is not concerned with slight violations." In the past, its primary application has been in cases of possession of illegal drugs or contraband. For example, in R. v. Peleshaty ([1950], 96 C.C.C. 147 [Man. C.A.]), this defence was used on appeal to acquit an individual charged with illegal possession of alcohol (it was illegal at the time). The defendant was found with two bottles containing about ten drops each. The court observed:

    "The Act was not intended to be used to prosecute for having ten drops of liquor, which is not a useable quantity. Convicting him for having ten drops of liquor in each of two bottles is so trifling that the law should take no notice of it."

    The cases involving possession of minute quantities of drugs has, however, fallen on both sides of the argument over the defence. See B.A. MacFarlane, Drug Offences in Canada (3d ed.) (Toronto: Canada Law Book, 1996). Applicability of this defence in true criminal matters also appears to be in flux. Success seems to be more likely for regulatory offences.

    As for applicability towards provincial offences act violations, the principle is sound. An example of this would be if you received a speeding ticket for 1km/h over the limit, or were issued a parking ticket for an expired meter at 8:59p.m. and parking was free after 9p.m. Cases where this principle applies are usually a case of "spirit of the law" versus the "letter of the law", and whether or not the slight violation is really deserving of punishment. If you actually intend to use this principle in court, I would suggest proper legal representation, or at the very least, doing your own thorough research on the topic.

    4.2) Fighting a speeding charge
    Because speeding is an absolute liability offence, it has very few defences available to it. Necessity is sometimes an option, but difficult to use. Generally, the only way to get out of a speeding ticket will be to show reasonable doubt in the testimony and evidence of the prosecution. What does this mean? Basically you have to show that there was a reasonable possibility that you may not have been the one who committed the offence, even though you were the one that was pulled over. This is very difficult to pull off in practice.

    If you go to trial, you will be given the chance to cross-examine all the crown's witnesses. This is usually only the one officer who pulled you over. However, if there was more than one officer involved, please see section 4.2.1. This is where the hard part begins. You will want to cover as many possibilities as you can, because the more doubt you can cast, the better your chances of getting off the hook. Some things you will want to bring up during cross examination:
    -Other cars on the road (could the officer have pulled over the wrong car?)
    -How many lanes on the road (could the radar reading have come from a car in another lane, or even a car going in the opposite direction?)
    -Calibration of the Radar unit or other speed-measuring device (was the device properly calibrated?)
    -Possible interference to the speed measuring device (for example, neon signs are one of many things that can interfere with radar)
    -Clerical errors on the ticket (If the officer made mistakes writing down information on the ticket, couldn't he be wrong about other things too?)

    Ask your questions in a 'sneaky' way. For example, if you want to cast doubt as to who was responsible for the radar reading, do NOT do this:

    Q. Could the radar reading have come from another car?
    A. No, I am certain that it picked up your car.

    Screwed. Instead, ask in the following way:

    Q. Officer, can your radar unit distinguish between targets or directions?
    A. No (If he says yes, he's probably lying...units that can cost a fortune, but in any event, you should have asked for the make and model of the unit when you made your disclosure request).
    Q. Is it not possible then, that the reading generated may have come from another car?
    A1. Yes.
    (A2. You may be unlucky and get an "Unlikely", but that's still better than the first scenario.)
    (Q. But that means it is still possible, correct?)
    (A. Yes.)

    You get the idea. You always want to force the officer to answer the question in your favour.

    If you haven't already done so, please read the FYST how-to guide (link at the start of the thread). It has a lot of good information and tips on how to fight your speeding ticket.

    4.2.1) Multi-officer speed traps
    Tickets issued involving more than one officer are easier to fight, because all of the officers must show up to court. The FYST site has a great section on multi-officer speed traps if you intend to fight a ticket issued by more than one officer.


    4.3) Fighting a 'careless driving' charge
    Careless charges are often laid when the officer doesn't know what charge to give, or wants to overcharge (knowing that it will be plea-bargained to a lesser offence in court). For example, if you went into a corner too fast and wiped out, if an officer arrives, they may slap you with a careless charge. As usual, the burden on the Crown is proof beyond a reasonable doubt that your actions were careless. Unless you can show that what you did was without negligence or fault on your part (either through the crown's evidence, or your own testimony), a conviction is likely. The defence of due diligence applies.

    A common occurrence is for the officer to lay a careless driving charge after the fact (i.e. the officer wasn't present at the time, and only arrived after the incident). If this is the case, you are in good shape. If it was a single vehicle accident (ie: no other people involved) and there are no other witnesses, you are in excellent shape. In this case, the only evidence against you is indirect or circumstantial evidence (evidence which was not witnessed first hand, but from which logical inferences can be drawn - e.g.: you go to bed, and wake up with snow on your lawn. You now have circumstantial evidence that it snowed last night). If there is only circumstantial evidence against you, the court follows the rule in "Hodge's Case" (an old English case). This rule requires that, before the court can find the defendant guilty, it must be satisfied that the circumstantial evidence must be such as to leave no reasonable explanation but that which indicates the guilt of the accused. In plain english, when the evidence against you is purely circumstantial, you can't be found guilty if you have a reasonable excuse/explanation for what happened, and the evidence does not contradict your explanation.

    An example: It is winter, and you you rear-end someone. The officer arrives at the scene, and gives you a careless driving charge. There are no witnesses, and the court did not subpoena the other driver to testify against you. When you take it to court, the only evidence against you is circumstantial (the officer's testimony - the officer arrived after the incident). You plead not-guilty, and give your testimony saying that you saw the car in front of you stop suddenly, you applied the brakes as hard as you could, but there was ice on the road, and you still ended up hitting the other car. In this case, the evidence against you is purely circumstantial, and you have offered evidence which supports a rational alternative conclusion to the careless driving charge.

    Careless driving is a kind of nebulous charge - the wording in the HTA is very vague, so it is not possible to define what exactly constitutes careless driving, and what doesn't ("without due care and attention or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the highway"). Just because you have been charged with it, does not mean you are guilty. The amount of case law on careless driving charges is vast, and it should be easy to find similar cases/cases to support your situation.

    An addition, from an earlier post regarding fighting a careless charge:

    Even if a collision ocurrs as a result of events under the direct control of the motorist, that does not guarantee conviction. Weather can be a valid excuse for escaping convction from a careless charge.

    Consider R. v. Smith (1961, 130 C.C.C. 177 (B.C. Co. Ct.)) in which the defendant was unfamiliar with the area in question. He had been driving along a poorly lighted narrow road on a dark night when he crashed into the retaining wall of a river dyke beside the road (and was charged with careless driving). The only evidence against him was the fact of the accident itself. The court held that this evidence was insufficient to support the charge, and that it was impossible to say that the mere happening of the accident gave rise to a presumption of lack of due care and attention in the circumstances.

    Consider Masters ([1980] Ont. D. Crim. Conv. 5525-07 (Co.Ct.)), in which the accused emerged from an underpass, where the roadway was wet to an icy road surface. The driver lost control of the vehicle, collided with a light standard, and was charged with careless. The accused was acquitted in court.

    Also consider R. v. Johnson (1983, 45 N.B.R. (2d) 371 (N.B. Q.B.) in which the accused had dropped a cigarette on the seat and, while attempting to put it out, drove on the wrong side of the road causing a collision. On appeal, the conviction was dismissed.

    Another one: R. v. Hall (Unreported, October 12, 1979, Ont. Dst. Ct. - Street J.) involved a defendant who was following a woman who stopped to make a turn onto a side street. When the driver stopped, the defendant's car came into collision with her because he was unable to stop in time. At the time, the weather conditions were adverse. It was snowing and the streets were slippery. The defendant saw her vehicle when he was a long way back. He saw her turn signal and then her brake signal and tried to stop, but was unable to do so. On appeal, the Judge found that he could not be satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that the defedant was driving without due care and attention as he had seen the car and stated that he saw it a long way back. He may have been driving carelessly, but it is equally possible that he had simply been unable to stop because the street was slippery and that through no fault of his own, he slid a long way. The conviction was set aside.

    While it is true that "best intentions" alone are not a valid defence, attempting to carry out those "best intentions" does constitute a valid defence, provided that those "best intentions" are what a typical reasonable person would have done in the same situation. This is known as the defence of "due diligence," and it is is a valid defence to a careless driving charge (among other charges). If you can show that you did everything that a reasonable person could have been expected to do to avoid the accident, and after all that, it still happened, then you are entitled to an acquittal. Your own testimony is usually sufficient, barring any contradictory evidence (circumstantial or otherwise) - e.g.: you said you tried to stop as hard as you could, bu there were no skid marks to indicate this.

    The law does not require perfection. Mistake of judgement does not necessarily constitute careless driving. Drivers are held to the standard of what the "ordinary prudent person would do in the circumstances". This standard is always shifting, depending on road, visibility, weather, and traffic conditions that exist or may reasonably be expected. Consider this passage from R. v. Beauchamp: "The law does not require of any driver that he should exhibit 'perfect nerve and presence of mind, enabling him to do the best thing possible.' It does not expect men to be more than ordinary men."

    4.4) Basic Rules of evidence
    Please see the FYST website appendix B. I won't get into any more detail here.


    Section 5) Random Miscellany
    This section contains answers to random questions. I may combine these into other sections at a later date.

    5.1)(Speeding) The officer reduced the ticket at the scene. If I take it to trial, can I be charged for the actual speed I was going?
    Officers will often reduce tickets at the scene to give you a sort of 'on the spot' plea-bargain. They may tell you that if you fight the ticket, they'll raise it back to the original amount. This is only partially true. The only way that the ticket can be raised back to the original amount is if you proceed to an actual trial, the original speed is proven beyond a reasonable doubt, the prosecutor asks for the original charge to be restored, and the Justice of the Peace agrees. You can still ask for a trial date and try for an 11b challenge, or hope that the officer doesn't show up. If your 11b challenge fails or the officer does show up and you don't want a trial, you can still plead guilty to the face value of the ticket (the reduced charge).

    5.2) The officer made a mistake on the ticket! Can I get it thrown out?
    Only very serious mistakes will render the charging document void.

    -Missing signature on the information (Justice or the informant)
    -No date
    -No name for the defendant
    -No name for the officer
    -No location given for the offence
    -No offence indicated or none known to law
    -Information sworn after the end of the limitation date
    -Failing to properly identify offence that accused stood charged with

    A common misconception is that the 'year' field on the ticket is for the model year of your car. This is incorrect - The 'year' field is actually the year of expiry on your license sticker. Even if this is incorrect, it is insufficient to nullify the ticket.

    If the officer spells your name wrong, that will not get you off the hook unless it is seriously misspelt. The test in such a case is whether a typical reasonable defendant reading the misspelled name would say "This is not me" or "This is me, but there is a mistake in the spelling of my name".

    If an officer made a non-fatal error on your ticket (i.e. one that won't get your charged dropped), you can still use it to your advantage during cross-examination. A mistake on the ticket will help you to establish reasonable doubt in the officer's evidence and testimony.


    5.3) What qualifications are required to be a Justice of the Peace?
    No legal background is required to be a Justice of the Peace. Some of them may have legal backgrounds, or at least experience as crown prosecutors, but the position of "Justice of the Peace" is by appointment (I'm not sure who appoints them...Attorney General, I'm guessing?). Justices do receive substantial training, but they are also human, and they can sometimes make judgements that are incorrect in the legal sense. Appeals to a higher court are sometimes necessary.

    5.4) What qualifications are required to be a Paralegal?
    No legal background is required to be a Paralegal. Anyone can call themselves a paralegal, and paralegals are not required to carry insurance in the event that they provide erroneous legal advice. Ontario is trying to regulate the industry, and as of May 1st, 20007, Ontario passed Bill 14 which gives the Law Society of Upper Canada the power to regulate the paralegal profession. However, I'm not sure what steps are being taken or how the enforcement of these regulations is carried out. When dealing with paralegals, the old adage "buyer beware" strongly applies!


    5.5) I didn't read this until now, and my trial is very soon! What can I do?
    You have several options. You can:
    -Proceed to trial. Unless you have asked for (and received) disclosure, this is usually not recommended. For some cases, you don't need disclosure to win at trial, but these are the exception.
    -Hope the officer doesn't show up. Failing that, accept a plea-bargain. This requires no advance preparation.
    -Ask for an adjournment. If it is less than two weeks before your court date, you generally will not have time to make a motion to adjourn your court date. You can ask for an adjournment the day of your trial as well, but you must have a good reason. If a witness or your legal representation were not able to show up at the last minute, an adjournment is almost always granted. In any event, you should speak to the prosecutor before court is in session.

    5.6) What do I do if I've been Bill 203'd?
    Hire a good traffic lawyer.
    Last edited by Rob MacLennan; 01-24-2012 at 03:30 PM.

  5. #5
    Brian's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Reserved for future expansion.
    Last edited by Brian; 06-05-2008 at 12:48 PM.

  6. #6

    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    I wish I had read this before I went to court for my speeding ticket... I was all happy and thought I would win since it had been more then 1 year from the date of my ticket, to my court date, and Section 11b would save my my money and my points... I didnt know that there were things I had to do for a Charter Challenge and found out the hard way when the Judge told me that there are steps to take in a Charter Challenge, and that I was toast... lol

    2002 Suzuki GSX600F (Completely Stock)
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  7. #7
    WebControl's Avatar
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    Question Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    First of all, thaks for usefull info.

    What is the difference, if I get speeding ticket in another province (Quebeq)? Am I required to go to Montreal to fight my ticket? Can I fight it in Ontario?

    Thanks!
    Last edited by WebControl; 09-01-2008 at 09:23 PM.

  8. #8
    Moderator Rob MacLennan's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    You must fight a ticket in the jurisdiction in which it was given. It is a contravention of Provincial, not Federal law.
    http://www.morallyambiguous.net/

    "Only in concealing one's identity, can one truly be known. (Whatcha!)" - Brother Silence, "The Gamers: Dorkness Rising"

  9. #9
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    great post,and los of info.
    just one more question,how do i file a Notice of Constitutional Question, or Form 4f?is there an example i can copy from? i already ask for a disclose whats next before the trail ?

  10. #10
    caramia
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian View Post
    Reserved for future expansion.
    Hi Brian,

    Regarding the disclosure, I just found out that I can request for such a document. Im three weeks away from my court date, is it too late to ask for a disclosure?

  11. #11
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    I'm looking for the red updates, but don't see any... great post though - thanks for taking the time to update it.
    Jason

  12. #12
    Brian's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Quote Originally Posted by caramia View Post
    Hi Brian,

    Regarding the disclosure, I just found out that I can request for such a document. Im three weeks away from my court date, is it too late to ask for a disclosure?
    It depends on the court office...three weeks is probably too late. You could ask for an adjournment to get disclosure, or hope for the best and try to ask for an adjournment on the day of your court date.

    Quote Originally Posted by farmerjoe View Post
    I'm looking for the red updates, but don't see any... great post though - thanks for taking the time to update it.
    Yeah sorry, the updates in red is for future updates that I haven't gotten around to.
    Last edited by Brian; 10-02-2008 at 06:28 PM.

  13. #13
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    I just want to add something to the requesting disclosure.

    I have a speeding ticket I got in May. Got my court notice this past Monday the 20th for my court date on December 3rd. 14 days notice.

    I've been speaking with my lawyer and he said I should of requested disclosure in or around when I first sent in the notice to fight the ticket. That waiting for my court date notice is irrelavant and that the process really starts when you request a court date. That you should soon after request disclosure and not necessarly wait.

    It makes sense to me now I guess. I just didn't expect to get my court date so soon after my notice.

    So here is a follow up question. The city of London will only fax it too me or I have to pick it up. Should I snail mail my request form the they provide in and wait for the fax in hopes that it takes too long to process and I don't get disclosure before my court (well hope I don't) or should I just fax in my request and give up on going into court and arguing that prosecution didn't provide disclosure?? Ideas?
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  14. #14

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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    that's what im doing. im sending in my request for disclosure a month after receiving my notice to appear in court and hoping they dont process it in time and get it to me. if the cop shows up i will ask for a retrial till i receive them or whatever...if he doesnt...i win lol

  15. #15
    mat2312's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    When filing for disclosure or an 11b, do you need to file each ticket seperately if they were issued at the same time?
    www.durhaminline.com Inline Hockey in Durham Region

  16. #16
    cclear
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    What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    hey all, first time to court, how do I file for disclosure? To whom do I make this request? I don't have a copy of the ticket! Also I will be filing for an 4F (11b?) since the court date is 13.5 months away from the date of offence, are my chances any good to get it thrown out?

  17. #17
    ironryder's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Quote Originally Posted by cclear View Post
    hey all, first time to court, how do I file for disclosure? To whom do I make this request? I don't have a copy of the ticket! Also I will be filing for an 4F (11b?) since the court date is 13.5 months away from the date of offence, are my chances any good to get it thrown out?
    where are you located? if you have your court at old city hall, to request a disclosure goto the ground floor/basement it is the small room next to the coffee shop on the right.you can give them you licence and they will print out your info ,then take your info across the hall at the booth and fill out a from for you request of a disclosure.

    my question is that which from can i use to file for a 11b?and how do we fill out the government from?it looks more difficult than the FYST from.it looks like that all we have to do is fill out all the red parts in brackets correct?

    Sample form from government website
    Sample from FYST

  18. #18
    mat2312's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    Quote Originally Posted by ironryder View Post
    where are you located? if you have your court at old city hall, to request a disclosure goto the ground floor/basement it is the small room next to the coffee shop on the right.you can give them you licence and they will print out your info ,then take your info across the hall at the booth and fill out a from for you request of a disclosure.

    my question is that which from can i use to file for a 11b?and how do we fill out the government from?it looks more difficult than the FYST from.it looks like that all we have to do is fill out all the red parts in brackets correct?

    Sample form from government website
    Sample from FYST
    I used the first one yesterday and was successful. You are just letting them know you are making the application. When you go to court, that's when you have to argue your points if necessary!!!
    www.durhaminline.com Inline Hockey in Durham Region

  19. #19

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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    I received disclosure in the mail but the copy of the tickets came out absolutely unclear, while the officer's notes are legible. Should/can I request disclosure again for the ticket copies? And what is the reason we request the ticket copies? Make sure they haven't written anything on their ticket that wouldn't have been translated onto the carbon copy?

  20. #20
    Moderator Rob MacLennan's Avatar
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    Re: What to do when you want to fight your ticket in court (new)

    If it doesn't show what you require, then it isn't exactly disclosure. Request it again and make sure that you can document the fact.
    http://www.morallyambiguous.net/

    "Only in concealing one's identity, can one truly be known. (Whatcha!)" - Brother Silence, "The Gamers: Dorkness Rising"

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