When can the police lawfully arrest me?

>>>When can the police lawfully arrest me?

In Canada, the police can arrest you both with a warrant and without a warrant.

Arrest with a warrant:

When the police are arresting you with a warrant, it means that they have already gone through the preliminary process of laying an information or of formally charging you with an offence before a justice of the peace or a judge. After laying the information, they have also successfully made an application for a warrant for your arrest, and have thereby been authorized to find you and bring you into custody. To learn more about this process, see our “What is a warrant?” section. So long as the police have been granted a warrant and have reason to believe that you are the person named in the warrant, they can arrest you.

Arrest without a warrant:

In Canada, the police can lawfully arrest you without a warrant. However, the circumstances in which the police may arrest you without warrant are strictly defined in Canadian law. Specifically, there are four main circumstances in which a police officer would be justified arresting you without a warrant:

  1. If they have reasonable grounds to believe that you have committed a crime;
  2. If they have reasonable grounds to believe that you are about to commit a crime;
  3. If they have reasonable grounds to believe that you are in the process of committing a crime; and,
  4. If they have not been personally granted a warrant to arrest you, but they have reasonable grounds to believe that there currently is a warrant for your arrest.

While police officers have the right to arrest you without a warrant in the situations named above, arresting a person without a warrant is an extraordinary power granted to the police that also requires that they meet four additional criteria for that arrest to be lawful. Specifically, in addition to having reasonable grounds to believe that you are somehow involved in a crime, the police must also have reasonable grounds to believe that the arrest is necessary for one of the following reasons:

  1. To establish the identity of the person being arrested;
  2. To secure or preserve evidence related to the offence;
  3. To prevent the continuation or repeat of the offence, or to prevent the commission of another offence; or
  4. Because they have reasonable grounds to believe that the person will not comply with an undertaking or appearance notice compelling them to attend court.

If you are arrested in a circumstance that falls outside of those just mentioned, it may be the case that there has been a violation of your Charter rights that can be used in building your defence. If you have been arrested recently, contact one of our defence lawyers immediately. Our skilled lawyers will be able to thoroughly review the circumstances of your arrest, identify any missteps by the police, and effectively use these police errors to mount a full and effective defence for you.

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Disclaimer: All results of cases handled by the lawyer/firm are not provided. The results provided are not necessarily representative of results obtained by the lawyer/firm or of the experience of all clients or others with the lawyer/firm. Every case is different, and each client’s case must be evaluated and handled on its own merits.

All our 30-60 minute free consultations are conducted with one of our Criminal Defence Lawyers and include the following steps:

  1. Gathering of some personal information about you, such as your level of education, occupation, and citizenship status. This information can be crucial for building your defence and seeking a resolution with the Crown Prosecutor;
  2. Careful review of all documents you received from the police. We will explain what each document is, and what you can expect from and need to do for all upcoming appearances;
  3. Critical review of your recollection of events, and any supporting materials you choose to bring with you. This step helps us identify possible defences and avenues for further investigation; and
  4. Discussion of the court process, our fee structure, and what we can do to help.

Beyond these steps, we would be happy to tell you more about us, and answer any questions you may have. If you chose to retain us to help you, we will immediately provide an overview of what steps we plan to take next, and suggestions as to what you should do to improve your chances of a successful outcome.

For the free initial consultation to be as productive as possible, you should bring (or email in advance) the following materials:

  • A written statement (preferably typed) outlining your version of events;
  • All documents that you have been given by the court or by the police;
  • Any disclosure you have received;
  • Photo ID; and
  • Any supporting documents, such as photographs, emails, texts, phone records, medical records, receipts, etc.

Ideally, you will have prepared a copy of these materials for us to keep, but if not, we can always photocopy them during the consultation.

We offer flexible payment options and structures designed to meet our clients’ individual needs. Our lawyers accept all major credit cards, bank drafts, money orders, email money transfers (e-transfers) and, of course, cash.

If you decide to retain us after the free initial consultation, all we need is a retainer (down payment) to get started. The rest of the fee payments for the case can be spaced out over time. We can set you up on a monthly or bi-monthly payment plan, and process payments over the telephone or by email to make it easy for you.

The cost of a criminal defence lawyer will depend on several factors, including:

  1. how complex your case is,
  2. how serious the charges are, and
  3. how experienced the Criminal Defence lawyer is.

The fees of a competent Criminal Defence Lawyer will typically range into the thousands of dollars. The good news is that only a fraction of that amount is due initially. We offer flexible payment schedules so thefees can be paid in monthly installments.

Additionally, we offer flat rate fees, with no hidden costs. It is our standard practice to review all the costs during the free initial consultation. This means you will know exactly what our services cost at the outset and can make an informed decision about how to proceed.