Has a criminal court ordered a peace bond against you? Are you confused or unsure as to what a peace bond even is, and how you should proceed? If so, a criminal defence lawyer in Calgary can help. At Batting, Wyman, our team of expert lawyers can guide you through the legal landscape of the Alberta court system.
If you are wondering what your options are with a court-ordered peace bond, then keep reading. In this blog, we will cover what a peace bond is, what the consequences of breaching it are, and how to potentially amend the conditions.
A Peace Bond: What is it?
Think of a peace bond as the lesser of two evils. If you’re involved in a domestic disturbance or family violence in some capacity, a peace bond is an appealing way of resolving a file as the client does not receive a criminal conviction. That said, this doesn’t mean that a peace bond does not have any negative elements.
A peace bond could introduce a whole host of restrictions in your life. Moreover, it could also end with severe charges and monetary penalties if you breach your court-ordered bond. Some of these restrictions may include:
- Conditions that restrict you from visiting the victim’s home or work
- Restrictions on alcohol (you could be banned completely from buying or consuming alcohol)
- Denied accessibility to firearms (training or possession)
- Domestic violence counselling
The conditions of a peace bond will vary depending upon the circumstances. Your conditions will be based on the judge’s acumen as well as the details of your specific case. Such conditions retain the possibility of lasting for up to a year. Further, they can affect your life in many other ways, including potentially disallowing you to go home or even see your kids.
If you breach any of the conditions of the peace bond, it is considered a separate criminal offence. You could be hit with additional charges as well as prison time, depending on the severity of the violation.
Can You Change the Terms of the Peace Bond?
There may be a circumstance where you want to change the terms of your peace bond. For instance, if the victim and yourself reconcile or require a discussion on the topics of combined finances or other familial problems. In order to amend conditions associated with a peace bond, the file has to be placed back in front of the judge who put the peace bond in place.
This requires contacting the Crown’s office as well as the courthouse in order to coordinate scheduling. Once back in front of the presiding judge, the application to vary is heard. In cases such as this, it is beneficial for the Crown to be in agreement with the proposed amendment. Where the amendment is by consent, it is far more likely that the amendment will be granted.
Can You Remove a Peace Bond From Your Criminal Record?
If a peace bond is ordered against you, you won’t have to worry about a criminal conviction. However, in Alberta, peace bonds may arise on criminal record checks. There are many employers who may refrain from hiring you if a peace bond is brought to their attention because it signals that you’ve run into assault allegations or domestic violence.
Contact us for a Free Consultation
A peace bond is put in place to keep the peace, as its name suggests. Failure to adhere to its policies can result in unfavourable consequences that are completely avoidable. If you’re looking for the help of a professional criminal lawyer in Calgary, then be sure to contact us today for a free consultation.
At Batting, Wyman, we house a team of expert criminal defence lawyers. And with clients ranging from investment bankers to professional athletes, we have a broad, yet in-depth understanding of legal matters to help reach the best possible outcome for our clients.