Canada’s Charter of Rights establishes the fundamentalright to a lawyer when you are arrested. If you are detained or arrested, you have the right to discuss your options with a lawyer without delay.
Always speak with a lawyer before you talk to police—to the point of refusing to speak with police or answer any questions until you have spoken with a lawyer. The right to counsel is guaranteed under section 10(b) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms—if you fail to insist on your right to counsel, you could inadvertently waive your right to speak with a lawyer before you talk to the police. Don’t waive that right.
How Police MustFacilitate Your Right to a Lawyer
Once police detain or arrestyou, you are no longer free to leave. At that point, you have a right to know why police detained or arrestedyou, and the police must explain to you the reasons for your detention or arrest. If you haven’t already asked to speak to a lawyer, do so now. Politely decline to speak to the police until you have spoken with your lawyer so that you can get legal advice about your situation.
- Once you are arrested, the police are required to:
- Inform the detainee or arrestee of the right to speak to a lawyer
- Give that person the means through which to speak to a lawyer, such as access to a telephone
- Provide information about the right to a lawyer at no cost through legal aid, or about any available 24-hour on-call lawyers
- Allow the detainee to speak to a lawyer in private, where police cannot overhear them
- Stop all questioning or other attempts to obtain information until the suspect has had a chance to speak with a lawyer
What Should You Do if You Are Arrested?
First and foremost, ask to talk to a lawyer immediately. Once you have asked to speak to a lawyer, the police must halt all questioning until you have done so.
When you are arrested, in fact, the police must tell you that you have a right to talk to a lawyer without delay. They then may search you for weapons or other contraband, complete the booking procedures that go with placing you under arrest, and then provide you with the opportunity to speak with a lawyer in private.
While you can waive the right to speak with a lawyer before talking to police, this is almost never a good idea. Insist on speaking to a lawyer before speaking with the police.
If You Were Arrested by Police in the Calgary Area and Were Not Promptly Allowed to Consult a Lawyer, Contact Bourdon Defence
Your right to promptly speak with a lawyer is a fundamental protection of the Charter of Rights. If you were denied that right following an arrest, consult with a lawyer, because this could affect the validity of any charges that you face. The lawyers of Bourdon Defense regularly assist in protecting people’s rights under such circumstances. Call us at (403) 474-4143 or write us through our website. write us through our website.