What is a preliminary inquiry?

1. Decide if you want a preliminary inquiry

If you're charged with an that gives you the right to a , you don't have to have one. You should first try and figure out if a preliminary inquiry will help your case or weaken it.

A preliminary inquiry can be useful in some situations. For example, you might want to have a preliminary inquiry if:

  • you want to see and hear the Crown's case against you
  • you need from witnesses to be recorded to make a Charter argument or a pre- trial application
  • you need evidence from Crown witnesses who are fragile, elderly, or unlikely to come to the to be recorded
  • it would make the Crown aware of the weaknesses in their case

If you can show the Crown that their case is weak, you may be able to use that to help negotiate a way to resolve your case.

But you might not want to have a preliminary inquiry if:

  • you can't afford to hire a lawyer for both a preliminary inquiry and a trial
  • it would delay your trial a lot
  • it would make the Crown aware of weaknesses in their case and give them the opportunity to fix these mistakes before your trial

If you decide not to have a preliminary inquiry, it means you agree to have a trial. It does not mean that you admit to committing the crime and that you're guilty.

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