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Rules of Practice of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec, Criminal Division, 2002 (SI/2002-46)

Regulations are current to 2020-12-28

Rules of Practice of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec, Criminal Division, 2002



Registration 2002-02-27

Rules of Practice of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec, Criminal Division, 2002

The annexed Rules of Practice of the Superior Court of the Province of Quebec, Criminal Division, 2002 were made by the Superior Court of Quebec pursuant to section 482 of the Criminal Code.

Montreal, Quebec, February 11, 2002

The Honourable Lyse Lemieux
Chief Justice
Superior Court of Quebec

(Section 482 of the Criminal Code)

I. Preliminary Provisions

 These rules apply to all the judicial districts of Quebec.

 Unless otherwise stated, the following definitions apply in these rules:

  • (a) Code means the Criminal Code;

  • (b) decision includes any conviction, verdict, order or sentence;

  • (c) clerk means the clerk of the Superior Court, Criminal Division, for the district where the appeal is filed;

  • (d) clerk of the court of first instance means the person having the legal custody of the proceedings filed before the court that rendered the decision appealed from.

II. General Provisions

A. Sessions of the Court

 Sessions of the court commence at 9:30 a.m. or at such other time as the court may fix.

 All persons present shall rise when the judge enters the court room and shall remain standing until the judge is seated. At the adjournment, they shall rise again, and remain in place until the judge has retired. The same rule applies in respect of jurors.

 At the opening of the session, the court usher shall say aloud:

“Silence. All rise please. The Superior Court is now in session, the Honourableblank linepresiding.”

Once the judge is seated, the court usher shall invite those present also to be seated.

 During sessions of the court, the following attire is obligatory:

  • (a) for counsel: black gown, bands, white collar and dark clothing;

  • (b) for articling students: black gown and dark clothing;

  • (c) for the court clerk and usher: black gown and dark clothing.

The wearing of the gown is not required during the months of July and August, except in the case of jury trials.

 Every person appearing before the court shall be suitably attired.

Every person addressing the court shall stand, unless the judge permits otherwise.

 Anything that interferes with the dignity and good order of the court is forbidden.

In particular, reading newspapers, taking photographs, filming, radio or television broadcasting and the use of cellular telephones and pagers are prohibited during sessions of the court.

The media may nevertheless record proceedings before the court on audiotape, including any decision rendered, unless the judge orders otherwise. The broadcasting of any such recording is prohibited.

 Any broadcasting of a recording of a hearing is prohibited.

  • SI/2005-19, s. 1

 In order to ensure the fair administration of justice, the serenity of judicial hearings and the respect of the rights of parties and witnesses, interviews and the use of cameras in a courthouse shall only be permitted in the areas designated for such purposes by directives of the chief justices.

  • SI/2005-19, s. 1

 The accused shall remain in the prisoners’ dock throughout the trial unless authorized by the judge to sit elsewhere in the court room.

B. Counsel

 Counsel who has acted for an accused when the latter was committed for trial is deemed to continue to represent the accused before the court, unless, at the committal stage, counsel has declared the mandate to be terminated and has caused this fact to be noted in the court record.

After committal of an accused for trial, counsel who wishes to withdraw from the record must serve written notice of such intention on both the accused and the prosecutor and must deposit the original notice together with the returns of service with the clerk.

Within the 14 days preceding the opening of the term or during the term itself, counsel who wishes to withdraw from the record may do so only with the permission of the court, and only after having served on the accused, the prosecutor and the clerk a motion, with one clear day’s notice, setting forth the reasons justifying such withdrawal.

If the accused is in custody, the clerk shall take the necessary steps to ensure the accused’s presence before the court on the date when the motion is presented.

 Unless the judge permits otherwise, only one counsel may act for each party during any of the following stages of a jury trial:

  • (a) empanelling of the jury;

  • (b) examination or cross-examination of any witness;

  • (c) argument on any objection;

  • (d) summing up to the jury.

C. Applications and Motions

 Unless the judge permits otherwise, all applications and motions must be in writing, and be served on the opposing party or their counsel, with a notice of presentation of at least one clear juridical day, except where the law expressly provides for another time-limit.

 All applications and motions must set out precisely the factual and legal grounds on which the applicant intends to rely, together with the conclusions sought.

D. Authorities

 A party who proposes to refer to case law or jurisprudence shall file a copy of the relevant pages and highlight the extracts relied on.

 A party who proposes to rely on regulatory or statutory provisions other than those set out in the Constitution Act, 1982, the Criminal Code, the Canada Evidence Act, the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Food and Drugs Act or the Young Offenders Act shall file in the court record a copy of the relevant provisions appropriately highlighted.

E. Placing on the Roll

 Only those applications and motions filed in the office of the clerk of the court in conformity with these rules shall be placed on the roll, unless specific provisions provide otherwise.

F. Hearing by Video Conference

 Any motion, application, appeal on the merits or pre-hearing conference may be presented by way of videolink in districts where the necessary equipment is available. Pre-hearing conferences may also be held by telephone.

Any party wishing to proceed by way of videolink must present a written application to the Judge Administrator of the Criminal Division with a copy to the other parties. In cases of urgency, such applications may be made by telephone.

After examining the matter, the judge shall forward the decision to the parties or to their counsel.

If the application is granted, either party may plead from any video facility available in the territory where they respectively reside, and either party may, at its option, address the court in the court room where the receiving apparatus is located and where the court is sitting.

G. Judgment

 The court may make any order that is necessary in the interests of justice, and may include in the order any conditions that it considers just.

 The clerk shall forward every written judgment or, as the case may be, the conclusions of any judgment rendered in open court and noted in the court record, to the parties or their counsel, to the judge who rendered the decision appealed from, and to the clerk of the court of first instance.

III. Specific Provisions

A. Judicial Interim Release

 No application made under section 522 of the Code may be heard by a judge unless the accused gives the prosecutor two clear juridical days’ written notice. The prosecutor may waive this requirement.

 Every application made under section 520 or 522 of the Code shall be supported by the affidavit of the accused attesting to the following information:

  • (a) the date and place of accused’s arrest;

  • (b) the residential address(es) of the accused during the ten years before arrest and notice of the address where the accused intends to reside if interim release is granted;

  • (c) the marital status of the accused; whether the accused is co-habiting with any other person and, if so, for how long;

  • (d) the accused’s occupation or the nature of the accused’s work at the time of arrest, the name of the accused’s employer, if any, and the length of time employed;

  • (e) a full statement of the accused’s criminal record, if any, including any convictions that are recorded in any foreign country;

  • (f) whether there are any other charges pending in Canada or elsewhere against the accused and, if so, the details of them;

  • (g) whether the accused is the holder of any passports.

B. Extraordinary Remedies

 Every application by way of certiorari, habeas corpus, mandamus, procedendo or prohibition shall be made by way of motion supported by one or more affidavits attesting to the truth of the facts alleged and setting out the relief sought.

 The motion shall be served on the court, judge or official who was responsible for the case and on all the parties and must include a notice of the date of its presentation of at least one clear juridical day.

The judge shall set the date for the hearing. In a case of urgency, the applicant may apply to the judge for directions.

 No motion filed after the expiry of 30 days from the date of the decision or proceeding that it challenges shall be heard unless a judge extends that period before or after it expires.

 Service of the motion suspends proceedings before the court, judge or official concerned, but a judge may at any time order the proceedings to be continued.

 On being served with the motion, the respondent court, judge or official shall transmit the record of the case to the clerk.

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