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Toronto Criminal Lawyer

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What is a Peace Bond?

A peace bond is a court order that requires an individual to keep the peace and be of good behaviour for a specified amount of time (usually 12 months).  Keeping the peace and being of good behaviour simply translates to not getting into trouble with the law.  These court orders often carry other conditions which can include: not to attend a certain place, no contact directly/indirectly with a person(s) and not to possess any weapons.  This applies to both types of peace bonds.

A peace bond does not result in a criminal conviction and most commonly signed in exchange for the withdrawal of criminal charges.  If you are facing charges, signing this document will not result in a finding of guilt but may have negative repercussions in family law.  It also may appear on a Vulnerable Sector Search after the term has expired.

What is a Common Law Peace Bond?
What is a Section 810 Peace Bond?
What Happens if I Breach the Conditions?


What is a Common Law Peace Bond?

Our common law has traditionally permitted judges to bind individuals to keep to peace where the judge has apprehended a breach of the peace.  There must be a basis for this apprehension which is usually put on the record in court.  Common law peace bonds have a wider scope can last longer than 12 months if the Court deems it appropriate.

What is a Section 810 Peace Bond?


Statutory peace bonds under section 810 of the Criminal Code of Canada require a sworn complaint.  The person who makes the complaint is referred to as a “complainant”.  The complainant must have a fear for his/her safety (or a loved one or their property) and that fear must be a reasonable one for a Court to make this order.  Statutory peace bonds under section 810 are far more common and cannot exceed 12 months in duration.  This is typically a very good result for an individual who is facing criminal charges, but every case and every client is different.  Signing one of these orders may place restrictions on an individual’s liberty.  There is no substitute to hiring a criminal lawyer to advise you of your options and to always act in your best interest.  Call 416-428-2760 to reach Michael.


What Happens if I Breach the Conditions?


If you breach the conditions of a common law peace bond, you may be charged with the criminal offence of Disobeying a Court Order (Criminal Code of Canada section 127).  This is a hybrid offence which means the prosecution can elect to proceed by summary conviction or indictment.  If the crown proceeds summarily, the maximum punishment is a $5,000 fine and/or 6 months in jail.  If the crown proceeds by indictment, the maximum punishment is two years in jail.

If you breach the conditions of a section 810 peace bond, you may be charged with Breach of Recognizance (Criminal Code of Canada section 811).  If the crown elects to proceed by indictment the maximum penalty is four years in a penitentiary.  If the crown proceeds by way of summary conviction, the maximum sentence is a $5,000 fine and/or 18 months in jail (super-summary offence).

You Also May Be Wondering:
How Will a Criminal Record Affect Me?
What Are the Stages of  a Criminal Case?
What is a Discharge?
What are Defences to Assault Charges?

If you are facing criminal charges our law firm can help you obtain the best possible result.  Call our office to setup a free consultation.

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