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Criminal Procedure Rules of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories (SI/98-78)

Regulations are current to 2024-05-01

Criminal Procedure Rules of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories



Registration 1998-06-24

Criminal Procedure Rules of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories

The Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories, under section 482Footnote a of the Criminal Code and with the concurrence of a majority of the judges present at a meeting held on May 4, 1998, makes the annexed Criminal Procedure Rules of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories.

May 4, 1998

The Honorable J.E. Richard
The Honorable J.Z. Vertes
The Honorable V.A. Schuler
Justices of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories

PART 1General

Marginal note:Definitions

 The definitions in this section apply in these Rules.


application means a proceeding commenced by notice of motion whether described in the enabling legislation or another authority as an application or a motion. (demande)

Attorney General

Attorney General means the Attorney General, either of Canada or of the Northwest Territories, at whose instance criminal proceedings are initiated or conducted. (procureur général)


Charter means the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms Part I of the Constitutional Act, 1982. (Charte)

Chief Justice

Chief Justice means the Chief Justice of the Court or, if no Chief Justice is appointed, the senior judge. (juge en chef)


Clerk means the Clerk of the Court appointed under the Judicature Act, R.S.N.W.T. 1988, c. J-1, and includes a deputy clerk. (greffier)


Code means the Criminal Code. (Code)


counsel means the solicitor representing a party on a proceeding and includes the solicitor of record or an agent of that solicitor. (avocat)


Court means the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories and includes a judge. (tribunal)


judge means a judge of the Court and includes a deputy and an ex officio judge. (juge)

originating process

originating process includes a notice of motion and a notice of appeal. (acte introductif d’instance)


proceeding includes a trial, application, appeal or other hearing. (instance)


prosecutor means the Attorney General or, where the Attorney General does not intervene, the person who institutes a proceeding to which the Code applies, and includes counsel acting on behalf of either of them. (poursuivant)


respondent means a person against whom an application is made or an appeal is brought, as the case may be. (intimé)


solicitor means a barrister and solicitor entitled to practise law in the Northwest Territories who has, on behalf of an accused, appeared in court or filed documents in a proceeding. (procureur)

solicitor of record

solicitor of record means the solicitor who represents or represented the accused in the proceeding that is the subject of the application or the appeal. (procureur inscrit au dossier)

Marginal note:Interpretation

 Unless otherwise provided in these Rules, sections 2 and 3 of the Code apply to these Rules.

Marginal note:Application

 These Rules apply to all proceedings, within the jurisdiction of the Court, instituted in relation to any matter of a criminal nature or arising from or incidental to any such proceedings.

Marginal note:Intention of Rules

 These Rules are intended to provide for the just determination of every criminal proceeding and shall be liberally construed to secure simplicity in procedure, fairness in administration and the elimination of unjustifiable expense and delay.

Marginal note:Where matter not provided for in Rules

 Where a matter is not provided for in the Code or these Rules, the procedure shall be as specified by the Court or determined by analogy to the rules of the Court relating to civil actions.

Marginal note:Where accused acts in person

 Where an accused is not represented by a solicitor but acts in person, anything that these Rules require a solicitor to do shall be done by the accused and anything that these Rules permit a solicitor to do may be done by the accused.

Marginal note:Reference to subrule

 A reference in these Rules to a subrule is a reference to the subrule of the rule in which the reference occurs, unless the context indicates otherwise.

Marginal note:Forms

 The forms set out in the schedule shall be used where applicable and with such modifications as the circumstances require.

PART 2Service of Documents

Marginal note:Personal service not required

 Unless these Rules or an order of the Court requires otherwise, a notice of motion, notice of appeal or other document need not be served personally.

Marginal note:Manner of service

 A document that is not required to be served personally

  • (a) shall be served on a party who has a solicitor of record by serving the solicitor in a manner provided in rule 11 or 12; or

  • (b) may be served on a party acting in person or on a person who is not a party

    • (i) by mailing a copy of the document to the last address for service provided by the party or person or, if no such address has been provided, to the last known address of the party or person, or

    • (ii) by personal service.

Marginal note:Service on solicitor of record

 Service of a document on the solicitor of record of a party may be made

  • (a) by mailing a copy of the document to the solicitor’s office;

  • (b) by leaving a copy of the document with a solicitor or employee in the solicitor’s office; or

  • (c) by transmitting, by telecopier, a copy of the document accompanied by a cover page indicating the following:

    • (i) the sender’s name, address and telephone number,

    • (ii) the name of the solicitor being served,

    • (iii) the date and time of transmission,

    • (iv) the total number of pages transmitted, including the cover page,

    • (v) the telecopier telephone number from which the document is transmitted, and

    • (vi) the name and telephone number of a person to contact in the event of transmission problems.

Marginal note:Service on prosecutor

 In addition to the methods of service listed in rule 11, the prosecutor in a proceeding may be served with a document by leaving a copy of the document at the office of the prosecutor having carriage of the proceeding.

Marginal note:Service by mail

  •  (1) Service of a copy of a document by mail under these Rules shall be effected by sending it by prepaid, registered or certified mail.

  • (2) Unless there is evidence to the contrary, service of a document by mail is deemed to be effective on the seventh day after the day on which the document is mailed.

Marginal note:Evidence respecting notice

 Notwithstanding that a person has been served with a document in accordance with these Rules, the person, on a motion to set aside the consequences of default, for an extension of time or in support of a request for an adjournment, may show that the document

  • (a) did not come to his or her notice; or

  • (b) came to his or her notice only at some time later than the time it was served or is deemed to have been served.

Marginal note:Order validating service

 Where a document has been served in a manner other than one specified in these Rules or in an order, the Court may make an order validating the service if the Court is satisfied that

  • (a) the document came to the notice of the person to be served; or

  • (b) the document was served in a manner such that it would have come to the notice of the person to be served, except for the person’s own attempt to evade service.

Marginal note:Substitutional service, dispensing with notice

  •  (1) Where it appears to the Court that it is impractical for any reason to effect prompt service of a document in accordance with these Rules, the Court may make an order

    • (a) for substitutional service; or

    • (b) dispensing with service, if the Court considers it necessary in the interests of justice.

  • (2) Where the Court makes an order for substitutional service, it shall specify in the order when service in accordance with the order shall be deemed to be effective.

PART 3Applications Generally

Marginal note:Application of Part

 This Part applies to all proceedings commenced by notice of motion, except where these Rules provide otherwise or as ordered by a judge.

Marginal note:Commencement of application

 Where the Code, or any other enactment to which the procedural provisions of the Code apply, authorizes, permits or requires that an application or motion be made to, or an order or determination be made by, a judge of or presiding in the superior court of criminal jurisdiction or a judge as defined in section 552 of the Code, other than a judge presiding at trial on an indictment, the application or motion shall be made by notice of motion in Form 1 of the schedule.

Marginal note:Contents of notice of motion

 A notice of motion must set out the following:

  • (a) the place, date and time of the hearing;

  • (b) the precise relief sought;

  • (c) the grounds to be argued, including a reference to any statutory provision or rule on which the applicant relies;

  • (d) the documentary, affidavit and other evidence to be used at the hearing of the application; and

  • (e) where an order is required abridging or extending the time for service or filing of the notice of motion or supporting materials, a statement to that effect.

Marginal note:Service of notice of motion

  •  (1) A notice of motion, together with all supporting evidence, shall be served on all parties.

  • (2) Where there is uncertainty whether anyone not a party to an application or motion should be served, the applicant may apply ex parte to a judge for an order for directions.

  • (3) Except where otherwise provided, a notice of motion shall be served at not less than seven days before the day the application is to be heard.

  • (4) The notice of motion and supporting evidence may be served before it is filed with the Clerk.

Marginal note:Hearing in chambers of court

 An application may be heard in chambers or in court as the presiding judge directs.

Marginal note:Direction for written argument

 Where all parties agree, the Court may, on such terms as it considers just, direct that argument on an application be presented in writing rather than on the personal appearance of parties or the solicitors for the parties.

Marginal note:Consent to draft order

 The respondent may consent in writing to an order sought on the terms that are set out in the draft order and a judge, if satisfied that the relief sought by an applicant should be granted, may grant the order on the terms set out without the attendance of counsel.

Marginal note:Application by telephone or video conference

  •  (1) With consent of all parties and with leave of the judge, an application may be made by telephone or by video conference to a judge in chambers.

  • (2) A judge who hears an application by telephone or video conference may, where the judge considers that the personal attendance of the solicitors for the parties or the accused is desirable, direct that the application be heard or completed in chambers or in court with the personal attendance of the solicitors or the accused.

Marginal note:Memorandum of cases and authorities

 Unless otherwise ordered, the solicitor for each party to an application shall, not less than 48 hours before the application is to be heard, file and serve a memorandum setting out the cases, statutory provisions and any other authorities the solicitor intends to rely on at the hearing.

Marginal note:Affidavit evidence

  •  (1) Evidence on an application may be given by affidavit unless the Code or other applicable statute provides or a judge orders otherwise.

  • (2) A deponent may state in an affidavit only facts that are within the personal knowledge of the deponent or other evidence that the deponent would be permitted to testify to as a witness in court.

  • (3) An affidavit may contain statements of the deponent’s information and belief with respect to facts that are not contentious, if

    • (a) the source of the information and the fact of belief are specified in the affidavit; or

    • (b) these Rules do not provide otherwise.

Marginal note:Cross-examination on affidavit

  •  (1) Subject to the Code and any other applicable statute or rule of law, a deponent may be cross-examined on his or her affidavit

    • (a) before the return date of the application where there is sufficient time to permit a transcript of the cross-examination to be filed with the Clerk before that date; or

    • (b) before the judge presiding on the hearing of the application, with leave of that judge.

  • (2) The deponent to be cross-examined may be required to attend for cross-examination in the same manner as a party to be examined for discovery pursuant to the rules of the Court relating to civil actions.

Marginal note:Oral evidence

  •  (1) A witness may be examined or cross-examined on the hearing of an application with leave of the presiding judge.

  • (2) Nothing in these Rules shall be construed to affect the authority of a judge hearing an application to receive evidence through the examination of witnesses.

Marginal note:Power of judge

 A judge, before or on the hearing of an application, may dispense with the filing of a transcript or an affidavit required by these Rules and act on a statement of facts agreed to by the prosecutor and the accused.


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