A DUI ticket is getting a lot of attention these days, and it’s getting a lawyer.
But it’s not going to be a quick fix.
The Alberta Court of Appeal has ruled that there is no such thing as a “legal fault” in an accident involving an automobile.
“There is no ‘accident’ under the Criminal Code,” wrote Justice Charles Hirsch, a three-judge panel of the Alberta Court.
The ruling means a driver who has a car accident, such as a head-on collision, can be charged with an offence if there is evidence that the driver knew they were at fault.
The court says it’s a “significant change” that will make it much harder for lawyers to argue cases without getting a ticket.
“The majority of drivers will no longer be able to rely on the ‘sensible’ assumption that if they had been in a safer car they would not have been involved in a collision,” Hirsch wrote.
“This decision, while not an absolute ban on lawyers, will certainly be a significant deterrent to those who wish to work for the legal profession in this jurisdiction.”
The ruling also makes it harder for the Crown to ask a judge to impose a temporary suspended sentence.
The new rules mean a court will have to find the driver’s actions were “unreasonable” and “contrary to the law.”
The court said the Crown will still have to prove “the driver’s reckless conduct was not reasonably foreseeable” and there will be “no such defence as that of ‘insufficient provocation.'”
The court also found that the Crown can ask a court to impose probation.
The lawyer will have two weeks to respond to the ruling.