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End of the line for version 1 IRP legal challenges

In September we told you about how we ended up involved in the appeal of the remedy decision for the first version of the IRP scheme. The original challenge to the first version of the IRP scheme (what some call "IRP 1.0") was advanced by a group of lawyers, us included, and handled by a firm we hired to mount the challenge. They succeeded and the law was struck down. The issue next was whether there was a remedy for the people who were punished while the unconstitutional law was still in place. Many people had grand hopes in class-action lawsuits,...

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Do they care about saving lives or holding power?

About 78 people die each year in BC due to a collision involving a drunk driver. That’s the average you’ll find on ICBC’s website. It’s significant because in most of those cases the deaths are directly linked to the fact that one driver was impaired in their ability to drive. It follows that in most cases the accidents were avoidable. To deal with this problem the BC Government told the courts that this is a crisis and because it’s a crisis they should be permitted to have constitutionally deficient legislation. To that end the BC Government created the Immediate Roadside...

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Drove to Escape an Assault

One of the more disappointing aspects of the Immediate Roadside Prohibition review scheme is that there is no defence available if you drove to escape an assault. In criminal law we have the defence of necessity. So if there was a hunting accident and there was no reasonable option but for you to drive to obtain medical help, you would have a defence to any criminal impaired driving charge under that circumstance. Similarly, if the reason you got behind the wheel was to flee an attacker, you would be able to rely on the defence of necessity as an excuse...

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Impaired by Drugs

Governments across Canada are in a frenzied panic to come up with some better way to deal with drivers who are allegedly impaired by drugs. Suddenly this is a crisis. As though for the first time ever people who drive have discovered recreational drugs. In 2010 it was barely worth mentioning as a problem. In 2016 it threatens the very essence our of society. The war on drugs — what was that about? Oh yeah, what we have here is a war on the elusive driver impaired by drugs. What to do? Won’t somebody think of the children? Yeah. Right. If you’re...

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Hundreds of Roadside Prohibition Revoke

Each year we have hundreds of roadside prohibitions revoked for clients from all around British Columbia, particularly Immediate Roadside Prohibitions and Administrative Driving Prohibitions. So we’re accustomed to succeeding and we keep track of our successes. After all, we are the most successful law firm defending IRPs in the province. [pullquote]We accumulated several years of data now and we continue to remain the most successful IRP lawyers. [/pullquote] Still, every now and again we’re surprised by our own numbers. September 2016 is a good example. Record month When we say hundreds of roadside prohibitions revoked, we’re not kidding. From the start of the day on...

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Presentation to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs

On September 27, 2016, Paul Doroshenko of Acumen Law Corporation presented to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee with respect to a study the Senate is conducting on delays in Canada’s Criminal Justice system. Paul went over time in his oral evidence. The entire presentation was provided in written form. We have reproduced Paul’s entire presentation below. Click here to download the PDF. Delay in Our Justice System Arising from Developments in Impaired Driving Defense Paul Doroshenko, Lawyer, Acumen Law Corporation STANDING SENATE COMMITTEE ON LEGAL AND CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS Study on matters pertaining to delays in Canada’s criminal justice system September 27, 2016 Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver Introduction Thank...

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Everyone wants to beat the breathalyzer

It’s surprising to us but it seems that everyone wants to beat the breathalyzer. When we go to parties and events its one of the first things we’re asked. It’s odd. But what does it mean? [pullquote] It’s not wrong to want to know where you stand. It’s not wrong to want to ensure that any breath tests give results that allow you the benefit of the doubt.[/pullquote] On the one hand it’s an important consideration. Are breathalyzers accurate? Can you beat the breathalyzer? Is it possible to mislead or screw up this important investigative tool such that you might dupe the...

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Our constitutional challenge to the new IRP law

Over the summer we were working hard but we also tried to take a break from writing IRP blog posts. Kyla has her own blog, and Sarah continues to write for the Huffington Post and Georgia Straight, but we didn’t want to spend all of our free time writing. We needed a break and a little sunlight. But now we’re back at it and we have a lot to cover. First and most important, perhaps, is that we’ve started a constitutional challenge to the new IRP law. [pullquote] On June 20, 2016, Kyla filed a constitutional challenge to IRP 3.0 in...

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We filed an appeal of the IRP 1.0 remedy decision

In June we told you about the remedy decision by BC Court of Appeal with respect to people who were issued Fail Immediate Roadside Prohibitions under the first version of the IRP scheme. The first version of the IRP law was found unconstitutional by the courts. That part of the case went to the Supreme Court of Canada which confirmed the lower court findings. [pullquote] We were of the view that a further appeal was necessary.[/pullquote] In essence, everyone who received a 90-day IRP for blowing Fail from September 20, 2010 to November 30, 2011 were subject to a violation of their...

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When you don’t care about rights

What happens when you don’t care about rights? If you’re an individual you’re probably simply struggling to survive on a day to day basis with all sorts of hurdles and problems. Perhaps you don’t think about your rights enough to care. You know you have rights, but whether they’ll be respected is really an issue of law and government. [pullquote] They can leave people hanging, with the prohibition on their driving record for years and years. What do they care?[/pullquote] If the government doesn’t care about rights, that’s a much bigger concern. Governments legislate rights. The Charter of Rights and most pieces...

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