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Contraventions Act (S.C. 1992, c. 47)

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Act current to 2022-06-20 and last amended on 2019-12-18. Previous Versions

Contraventions Act

S.C. 1992, c. 47

Assented to 1992-10-15

An Act respecting contraventions of federal enactments

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Contraventions Act.

Interpretation

Marginal note:Definitions

 In this Act,

Attorney General

Attorney General means the Attorney General of Canada or the Attorney General of a province, and includes counsel or an agent exercising any of the powers or performing any of the duties and functions of the Attorney General for the purposes of the applicable laws of a province or this Act, as the case may be; (procureur général)

contravention

contravention means an offence that is created by an enactment and is designated as a contravention by regulation of the Governor in Council; (contravention)

contraventions court

contraventions court means, in respect of a contravention alleged to have been committed in, or otherwise within the territorial jurisdiction of the courts of, a province, a court designated by order of the Governor in Council in respect of that province; (tribunal des contraventions)

enactment

enactment means any Act of Parliament or any regulation, rule, order, by-law or ordinance made under an Act of Parliament; (texte)

enforcement authority

enforcement authority means, in respect of a contravention,

  • (a) any police officer or constable, including a special or auxiliary constable,

  • (b) the minister responsible for administering the enactment creating the contravention,

  • (c) any person, or member of a class of persons, designated by the minister responsible for administering the enactment creating the contravention, or

  • (d) the corporation or other body that made or is responsible for administering the enactment creating the contravention; (agent de l’autorité)

fees

fees means any of the amounts provided for under paragraph 8(1)(e); (frais)

forfeitable thing

forfeitable thing[Repealed, 1996, c. 7, s. 1]

Minister

Minister means the Minister of Justice; (ministre)

prescribed

prescribed means prescribed by regulation; (réglementaire)

ticket

ticket means a ticket issued under this Act; (procès-verbal)

young person

young person means, in respect of a contravention, a person who, at the time of the contravention, is or, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, appears to be twelve years of age or more but under eighteen years of age; (adolescent)

youth court

youth court[Repealed, 2002, c. 1, s. 167]

youth justice court

youth justice court means, in respect of a contravention alleged to have been committed by a young person in, or otherwise within the territorial jurisdiction of the courts of, a province, the court established or designated by or under an Act of the legislature of the province, or designated by the Governor in Council or lieutenant governor in council of the province, as the youth justice court for the purposes of the Youth Criminal Justice Act. (tribunal pour adolescents)

  • 1992, c. 47, s. 2
  • 1996, c. 7, s. 1
  • 2002, c. 1, s. 167

Her Majesty

Marginal note:Binding on Her Majesty

 This Act is binding on Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province.

Purpose

Marginal note:Purpose

 The purposes of this Act are

  • (a) to provide a procedure for the prosecution of contraventions that reflects the distinction between criminal offences and regulatory offences and that is in addition to the procedures set out in the Criminal Code for the prosecution of contraventions and other offences; and

  • (b) to alter or abolish the consequences in law of being convicted of a contravention, in light of that distinction.

Relationship with Other Acts

Marginal note:Relationship with Criminal Code and Youth Criminal Justice Act

 The provisions of the Criminal Code relating to summary conviction offences and the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act apply to proceedings in respect of contraventions that are commenced under this Act, except to the extent that this Act, the regulations or the rules of court provide otherwise.

  • 1992, c. 47, s. 5
  • 1996, c. 7, s. 2
  • 2002, c. 1, s. 168

 [Repealed, 1996, c. 7, s. 3]

Marginal note:Relationship with arrest provisions

 A power of arrest in respect of an offence that is conferred by an enactment may be exercised in respect of the offence even though the offence is designated as a contravention, but nothing in this Act confers or enlarges a power of arrest.

Designation of Offences

Marginal note:Regulations

  •  (1) The Governor in Council may, for the purposes of this Act, make regulations

    • (a) designating as contraventions offences created by any enactment, other than offences for which an offender may be prosecuted only on indictment;

    • (b) establishing short-form descriptions of contraventions;

    • (c) establishing, in respect of a contravention, an amount as the amount of the fine for the purposes of proceedings commenced by means of a ticket;

    • The following provision is not in force.

      (d) prescribing the form of tickets and other forms that may be used for the purposes of this Act;

    • (e) providing for the fees, costs, penalties and other amounts that

      • (i) shall be imposed in respect of a contravention, or

      • (ii) may be imposed in respect of a contravention,

      in the circumstances prescribed, at any stage of the proceedings; and

    • (f) prescribing classes of contraventions for the purposes of this Act.

  • Marginal note:Fees

    (1.1) Different fees may be provided for in respect of each province.

  • Marginal note:Revocation of designation

    (2) For greater certainty, the Governor in Council may revoke the designation of an offence as a contravention.

  • Marginal note:Maximum fine

    (3) An amount established under paragraph (1)(c) may not exceed the maximum amount established for the relevant offence by the enactment creating the offence.

  • Marginal note:Maximum fine for contraventions by young persons

    (4) An amount established under paragraph (1)(c) in respect of a contravention, other than a contravention relating to parking a vehicle, may not exceed one hundred dollars, if the contravention is committed by a young person.

  • Marginal note:Minimum fine

    (5) An amount established under paragraph (1)(c) may not be less than any minimum amount prescribed for the relevant offence by the enactment creating the offence.

  • Marginal note:Corporations and individuals

    (6) Different amounts may be established under paragraph (1)(c) in respect of corporations and individuals committing the same contravention if the enactment creating the offence differentiates between them in prescribing the punishment for the offence.

  • Marginal note:Sufficiency of short-form description

    (7) The use on a form prescribed under this Act of a short-form description established under paragraph (1)(b) or of a description that deviates from that description without affecting its substance is sufficient for all purposes to describe the contravention.

  • (8) [Repealed, 1996, c. 7, s. 4]

  • 1992, c. 47, s. 8
  • 1996, c. 7, s. 4

Completion and Service of Tickets

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Completion and service of ticket

  •  (1) An enforcement authority who believes on reasonable grounds that a person has committed a contravention may, within thirty days after the day on which the contravention is believed to have been committed, complete a ticket in respect of that contravention and cause it to be served on the person.

  • Marginal note:Notes on all copies

    (2) A ticket served on a person under subsection (1) must include any notes made by the enforcement authority on any other copy of the ticket.

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Service on individuals

  •  (1) Service of a ticket on an individual must be personal and is effected by leaving a copy of it with the individual or, if the individual cannot conveniently be found, with a person who appears to be at least eighteen years of age at the last or usual place of residence of the individual.

  • Marginal note:Service on corporations

    (2) Service of a ticket on a corporation is effected by

    • (a) leaving a copy of it with

      • (i) the clerk or the chairperson, mayor, warden, reeve or other chief officer, in the case of a municipal corporation, or

      • (ii) an officer or director or the person at any place of business of the corporation who appears to be in control or management of the place of business, in the case of a corporation other than a municipal corporation; or

    • (b) sending a copy of it by registered mail to the head office of the corporation.

  • Marginal note:Service on non-residents

    (3) Service of a ticket on an individual who does not reside in Canada may be effected by sending a copy of it by registered mail to the last or usual place of residence of the individual.

  • Marginal note:Effective date

    (4) Service of a ticket by registered mail is effective on the seventh day after the ticket is mailed.

 [Repealed, 1996, c. 7, s. 5]

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Parking contraventions

  •  (1) An enforcement authority who believes from personal knowledge that a person has committed a contravention relating to parking a vehicle may, at the time of the alleged contravention, complete a ticket in respect of that contravention and serve it on the person or the owner of the vehicle.

  • Marginal note:Notes on all copies

    (2) A ticket served on a person under subsection (1) must include any notes made by the enforcement authority on any other copy of the ticket.

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Vicarious liability of vehicle owners

 Where a contravention relating to parking a vehicle is committed, the owner of the vehicle is guilty of the like contravention.

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Service of parking ticket

  •  (1) Service of a ticket, in respect of a contravention relating to parking a vehicle, on the person who parked the vehicle is effected by affixing the ticket to the vehicle in a conspicuous place or by leaving a copy of the ticket with the person having care and control of the vehicle.

  • Marginal note:Service on vehicle owner

    (2) Service of a ticket, in respect of a contravention relating to parking a vehicle, on the owner of the vehicle is effected by affixing the ticket to the vehicle in a conspicuous place.

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Certificate of service

  •  (1) An enforcement authority who serves a ticket shall complete and sign a certificate of service stating that the ticket was, on the day set out in the certificate, served on the person who the enforcement authority believes committed the contravention and, in the case of a ticket served in respect of a contravention relating to parking a vehicle, on the owner of the vehicle.

  • Marginal note:Certificate as evidence

    (2) The certificate is evidence that, on the day set out in the certificate, a ticket was served on the person who the enforcement authority believes committed the contravention and, in the case of a ticket served in respect of a contravention relating to parking a vehicle, the owner of the vehicle.

Contents of Ticket

The following provision is not in force.

Marginal note:Contents of ticket

 A ticket must be in the form prescribed under paragraph 8(1)(d) and

  • (a) contain a statement signed by the enforcement authority certifying, in the case of a ticket served under section 9, that the enforcement authority has reasonable grounds to believe that a contravention has been committed and, in the case of a ticket served under section 12, that the enforcement authority believes from personal knowledge that a contravention has been committed;

  • (b) include the short-form description of the contravention established under paragraph 8(1)(b);

  • (c) indicate with reasonable precision, having regard to all the circumstances, the time and place at which the contravention was committed;

  • (d) set out a total amount equal to

    • (i) the amount established under paragraph 8(1)(c) as the amount of the fine, and

    • (ii) the fees that are applicable on serving a ticket;

  • (e) set out the options the person served with the ticket has in responding to it, the time within which the person must respond and the consequences under section 44 of failing to respond;

  • (f) provide an opportunity for the person to indicate in which official language, being the person’s language, the person wishes to be tried;

  • (g) provide an opportunity for the person to indicate whether the person is a young person;

  • (h) mention that the ticket may be used as the evidence of the enforcement authority; and

  • (i) provide an opportunity for the person to indicate whether the attendance of the enforcement authority who completed the ticket is required for the purposes of cross-examination.

  • 1992, c. 47, s. 16
  • 1996, c. 7, s. 6

Commencement of Proceedings

Marginal note:Filing of ticket

  • The following provision is not in force.

     (1) A proceeding in respect of a contravention may be commenced by filing a ticket in the office of the contraventions court or, if the contravention is alleged to have been committed by a young person and the lieutenant governor in council of the province has not made an order under subsection (2), in the office of the youth court.

  • The following provision is not in force.

    Marginal note:Jurisdiction of adult courts over young persons

    (2) Notwithstanding the Youth Criminal Justice Act, a contraventions court or a justice of the peace has jurisdiction, to the exclusion of that of the youth justice court, in respect of any contravention alleged to have been committed by a young person in, or otherwise within the territorial jurisdiction of the courts of, a province the lieutenant governor in council of which has ordered that any such contravention be dealt with in ordinary court.

  • The following provision is not in force.

    Marginal note:Application of Statutory Instruments Act

    (3) Paragraph 3(2)(d) of the Statutory Instruments Act does not apply in respect of an order of the lieutenant governor in council of a province under subsection (2).

  • (4) [Repealed, 2001, c. 26, s. 293]

  • 1992, c. 47, s. 17
  • 1996, c. 7, s. 7
  • 2001, c. 26, s. 293
  • 2002, c. 1, s. 169
 
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