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Vancouver Criminal Law Blog
Acumen Law Corporation > Blog (Page 19)

Court quashes penalties imposed under invalid drunk-driving law

Drunk driving ruling

The B.C. Supreme Court has rapped the provincial government’s knuckles for penalizing allegedly impaired motorists under the original version of the anti-drunk driving scheme after it was struck down. Victoria had no authority after June 30, 2012 — the deadline to fix the flawed sections of the Motor Vehicle Act — to impose certain Immediate Roadside Prohibitions and penalties under the old law, Justice Peter Voith said. He quashed any bans, fines or remedial programs facing the drivers who blew a “fail” in the weeks before the Nov. 30, 2011 judgment that found some parts of the controversial impaired driving legislation unconstitutional. “I...

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The accused: drunk driving lawyer in BC

Drunk driving lawyer in bc

We stand accused. In fact, we're guilty. We were reminded the other day that the reason we have the IRP scheme is the drunk driving lawyer in BC. And we're not just talking about any one of us in particular or the lawyers in our office per se, but the particular subspecies and members of that group. We're talking about the class or type of lawyers who defend drunk driving charges. If it were not for the drunk driving lawyer in BC, we would not have Immediate Roadside Prohibitions. That is true. Allow us to explain. In British Columbia there are...

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IRP version 1 – important decision on adjourned IRP hearings

Version 1 IRP Important Decision

The BC Supreme Court rendered a decision today that we've been waiting for concerning old Immediate Roadside Prohibitions. This affects anyone who had an IRP under version 1, where the hearing took place after June 30, 2012. This will be good news for a number of people. The important decision on adjourned IRP hearings confirms what we argued in each of these cases: the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles (now RoadSafetyBC) had no jurisdiction to conduct hearings under IRP scheme version 1 after June 30, 2012. Some background: The first version of the Immediate Roadside Prohibition law was ruled unconstitutional with regards to...

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The role of RoadSafetyBC

The Role of RoadSafetyBC

Even lawyers like us, who deal with RoadSafetyBC each day, find this particular government office an unanswered puzzle. You may recall that back in May the Office of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles officially changed its name to RoadSafetyBC. The name change, although presumably intended to express clarity of purpose, seems to further highlight the contradictory nature of their purpose. The name expresses very clearly that this is a government office that advocates for road safety. Although it's a laudable goal, should it be the role of a government office that is also responsible for adjudication of disputes between individuals...

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Warn Immediate Roadside Prohibition

Warn Immediate Roadside Prohibition

We received some emails and calls since our first blog post on the IRP scheme version 2 court challenge asking how these court cases may affect Warn Immediate Roadside Prohibition cases. If you're up to date with the main court challenges to the IRP scheme, you may already know that the Sivia decision held that IRPs for Fail under the first version of the law are unconstitutional. The Government went back and re-wrote the law, claiming that the new version (IRP 2.0) fixes the problems with the old one. In mid July we were part of a team of lawyers who conducted...

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IRP 2.0 court challenge

IRP 2.0 Court Challenge

As we explained earlier, we were involved in the challenge to the second version of the Immediate Roadside Prohibition scheme. The hearing took place just over a week ago in BC Supreme Court sitting in Victoria. IRP 2.0 is now in the hands of the Court. Of course, the first version of the scheme was found unconstitutional by the Court when it came to 90-day IRPs for blowing "Fail" and the law was re-drafted. The Court decisions regarding the first version are still under appeal so everything could be upset by later rulings on the first version. For example, if the...

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