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PEACE BONDS


Under section 810 of the Criminal Code, a complainant can apply to the Provincial Court to have an individual placed under the provisions of a recognizance to keep the peace and be of good behaviour (a peace bond).  


To succeed in obtaining the order, the complainant must prove beyond a balance of probabilities (by more than 50 percent) that his or her person, family, or property is in danger injury or damage.


Technically, a peace pond is not a criminal conviction. It therefore does not require proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

CAUTION


However, before waiving the right to a hearing and consenting to enter into a peace bond, the accused person should consider that a record of the peace bond will be kept at the Provincial Court office and that this is a public record.


In addition, should there be a breach of the peace bond, that would be a criminal offense.  


Additionally, should the complainant allege a more serious complaint such as assault, the existence of the prior peace bond would be prejudicial to the defense.


If there are also proceedings in the Family Court or a divorce proceedings between the complainant and the accused person, the accused person should consider the negative impact of the existence of the peace bond upon the Family Court or divorce proceedings.

Jim O'Neil, LL.B.

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