Archive for October 5th, 2017

What is a surety?

When a person is charged with a criminal offense, a Judge or Justice of the Peace must decide whether to release the accused person on bail, or to keep them in custody until their charges have concluded. One of the available options for release is for the accused to be released into the community under the supervision of one or more sureties. A surety is a person who takes responsibility for making sure the accused attends required court appearances and obeys the release conditions placed on them by the Court. A surety will post a sum of money, or an interest in property, which they risk forfeiting if they do not notify the police of any breaches by the accused. This added level of supervision can often give the Court the confidence they need to release an accused who might otherwise not be suitable for bail. A person must be […]


The Importance of Bail

The matter of bail has been in the media lately as a result of one famous inmate. Lawyers Denis Edney and Nate Whitling have fought to have Omar Khadr released from custody pending a determination of the validity of his conviction in the United States. While many people hold an opinion as to whether Khadr himself ought to have been released, many don’t know the role that bail (or judicial interim release as its sometimes called) plays in the administration of justice and its importance to the presumption of innocence. In Canada, the right to reasonable bail is enshrined in section 11(e) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. This means that all people accused of an offence have a right not to be denied bail without just cause. What constitutes just cause for denial of bail is outlined in section 515(10) of the Criminal Code and includes what are often referred to as […]


How Does Bail Work?

You or someone you love has been arrested for a criminal offence. Quite likely your first question will be, how do I (or my loved one) get released from police custody? When you are arrested by a police officer he/she has a great deal of discretion as to how they will deal with you. He/She can choose to release you on a Promise to Appear (PTA), with or without an Undertaking, he/she can consent to your release by a Justice of the Peace, or he/she can seek to have you detained in custody until you appear in Court. If you are released on a PTA, without an Undertaking, you are obliged to appear in Court on the specified date and any subsequent dates as ordered by the Court. There is no requirement that you deposit cash bail or comply with any conditions. If you are released on a PTA with […]