The Ladder of Bail

October 11, 2017

Bail is guaranteed under the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms. The Charter also states that the type of bail is to be the most lenient in the circumstances. The people who make this decision are the justices of the peace. 


The law has always been clear, there is a ladder that the presiding justice must work up in deciding what form of bail an accused person should be release on. 


The types of releases, in brief, are: 


* Promise to Appear and Officer in Charge Undertaking; 

* An Undertaking, with or without conditions, to a Justice; 

* A Recognizance, with or without conditions; and,

* A Surety Recognizance, with or without conditions.


The Crown will argue that an accused person be detained on the strictest form of bail. The defence will argue for the lowest form of bail. 


In putting together a bail plan, it is important to consider what the charges facing the accused are, what history the accused has, and if there are any special circumstances such as addictions or mental health issues. 


The justice of the peace must consider two main grounds when deciding whether to release someone or not. First whether they will show up to their court date and second whether they will be a risk to the public in re-offending. 


At MFC Lawyers, Alan Faeorin-Cruich, will work with you, and your supports, to ensure that a proper bail plan is presented to the court.  A bail plan must address the issues and concerns that a justice of the peace has. Alan will also be able to tailor the plan to address the issues that the Crown Attorney may raise in seeking detention. 


The recent case of R. v. Antic, decided this year by the Supreme Court of Canada, outlines clearly the ladder principle. It is used as a guide for justices of the peace in deciding what form of release to order.

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