Canada Elections Act (S.C. 2000, c. 9)

Act current to 2017-06-05 and last amended on 2016-01-01. Previous Versions

PART 1Electoral Rights

Marginal note:Persons qualified as electors

 Every person who is a Canadian citizen and is 18 years of age or older on polling day is qualified as an elector.

Marginal note:Disentitlement from voting

 The following persons are not entitled to vote at an election:

  • (a) the Chief Electoral Officer;

  • (b) the Assistant Chief Electoral Officer; and

  • (c) every person who is imprisoned in a correctional institution serving a sentence of two years or more.

Marginal note:Prohibition

 No person may

  • (a) vote or attempt to vote at an election knowing that they are not qualified as an elector or not entitled to vote under section 4; or

  • (b) induce another person to vote at an election knowing that the other person is not qualified as an elector or not entitled to vote under section 4.

Marginal note:Persons entitled to vote

 Subject to this Act, every person who is qualified as an elector is entitled to have his or her name included in the list of electors for the polling division in which he or she is ordinarily resident and to vote at the polling station for that polling division.

Marginal note:Only one vote

 No elector who has voted at an election may request a second ballot at that election.

Marginal note:Place of ordinary residence
  •  (1) The place of ordinary residence of a person is the place that has always been, or that has been adopted as, his or her dwelling place, and to which the person intends to return when away from it.

  • Marginal note:One place of residence only

    (2) A person can have only one place of ordinary residence and it cannot be lost until another is gained.

  • Marginal note:Temporary absence

    (3) Temporary absence from a place of ordinary residence does not cause a loss or change of place of ordinary residence.

  • Marginal note:Place of employment

    (4) If a person usually sleeps in one place and has their meals or is employed in another place, their place of ordinary residence is where they sleep.

  • Marginal note:Temporary residence

    (5) Temporary residential quarters are considered to be a person’s place of ordinary residence only if the person has no other place that they consider to be their residence.

  • Marginal note:Temporary residential quarters

    (6) A shelter, hostel or similar institution that provides food, lodging or other social services to a person who has no dwelling place is that person’s place of ordinary residence.

Marginal note:Interpretation of ordinary residence

 If the rules set out in section 8 are not sufficient to determine the place of ordinary residence, it shall be determined by the appropriate election officer by reference to all the facts of the case.

Marginal note:Members and persons living with members

 Each candidate at a general election who, on the day before the dissolution of Parliament immediately before the election, was a member, and any elector living with the candidate on that day who would move, or has moved, with the candidate to continue to live with the candidate, is entitled to have his or her name entered on the list of electors for, and to vote at the polling station that is established for, the polling division in which is located

  • (a) the place of ordinary residence of the former member;

  • (b) the place of temporary residence of the former member in the electoral district in which the former member is a candidate;

  • (c) the office of the returning officer for the electoral district in which the former member is a candidate; or

  • (d) the place in Ottawa or in the area surrounding Ottawa where the former member resides for the purpose of carrying out parliamentary duties.

Marginal note:Part 11

 Any of the following persons may vote in accordance with Part 11:

  • (a) a Canadian Forces elector;

  • (b) an elector who is an employee in the federal public administration or the public service of a province and who is posted outside Canada;

  • (c) a Canadian citizen who is employed by an international organization of which Canada is a member and to which Canada contributes and who is posted outside Canada;

  • (d) a person who has been absent from Canada for less than five consecutive years and who intends to return to Canada as a resident;

  • (e) an incarcerated elector within the meaning of that Part; and

  • (f) any other elector in Canada who wishes to vote in accordance with that Part.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 11;
  • 2003, c. 22, s. 100.
Marginal note:Residence at by-election
  •  (1) No elector is entitled to vote at a by-election unless his or her place of ordinary residence on polling day is situated in the same electoral district that includes the polling division in which was situated the elector’s place of ordinary residence at the beginning of the revision period established by section 96.

  • Marginal note:Address change within electoral district

    (2) For the purpose of a by-election only and despite anything in this Act, an elector who, during the period between the beginning of the revision period and ending on polling day, has changed his or her place of ordinary residence from one polling division to another polling division in the same electoral district may register his or her name on the list of electors in the new polling division.

PART 2Chief Electoral Officer and Staff

Chief Electoral Officer

Marginal note:Appointment and term of office
  •  (1) There shall be a Chief Electoral Officer who shall be appointed by resolution of the House of Commons to hold office during good behaviour for a term of 10 years. He or she may be removed for cause by the Governor General on address of the Senate and House of Commons.

  • Marginal note:No re-appointment

    (2) A person who has served as Chief Electoral Officer is not eligible for re-appointment to that office.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 13;
  • 2014, c. 12, s. 3.
Marginal note:Appointment of substitute
  •  (1) In case of the death, incapacity or negligence of the Chief Electoral Officer while Parliament is not sitting, a substitute Chief Electoral Officer shall, on the application of the Minister, be appointed by order of the Chief Justice of Canada or, in the absence of the Chief Justice of Canada, by the senior judge of the Supreme Court of Canada then present in Ottawa.

  • Marginal note:Tenure of office of substitute

    (2) A substitute Chief Electoral Officer shall act as Chief Electoral Officer until 15 days after the beginning of the next session of Parliament unless the Chief Justice of Canada or the judge who made the order to appoint the substitute Chief Electoral Officer sooner directs that the order be revoked.

  • Marginal note:Absence of Chief Justice

    (3) In the absence of both the Chief Justice of Canada and of the judge who made the order to appoint the substitute Chief Electoral Officer, the order may be revoked by any other judge of the Supreme Court of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Remuneration of substitute

    (4) The substitute Chief Electoral Officer is entitled to be paid the remuneration fixed by the Governor in Council.

Marginal note:Rank, powers and duties
  •  (1) The Chief Electoral Officer shall rank as and have all the powers of a deputy head of a department, shall perform the duties of the office on a full-time basis and shall not hold any other office under Her Majesty or engage in any other employment.

  • Marginal note:Salary and expenses of Chief Electoral Officer

    (2) The Chief Electoral Officer shall be paid a salary equal to the salary of a judge of the Federal Court, other than the Chief Justice of that Court, and is entitled to be paid reasonable travel and living expenses while absent from his or her ordinary place of residence in the course of his or her duties.

  • Marginal note:Superannuation and compensation

    (3) The Chief Electoral Officer is deemed to be employed in the public service for the purposes of the Public Service Superannuation Act and to be employed in the federal public administration for the purposes of the Government Employees Compensation Act and any regulations made under section 9 of the Aeronautics Act.

  • Marginal note:Communication with Governor in Council

    (4) The Chief Electoral Officer shall communicate with the Governor in Council through the Minister for the purposes of this Act.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 15;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 116;
  • 2003, c. 22, s. 101(E).
 
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