3. Review your disclosure
Question & AnswerWhat documents does the Crown have to give me?
The information in your will help you decide how you want to deal with your charges. Review your disclosure to make sure it has all the information about your case.
Talk to a lawyer
It's a good idea to hire a lawyer. But not everyone can afford to hire a lawyer, There are free or low-cost legal services available. You can read more in I can’t afford a criminal law lawyer. Where can I get free legal help?
A lawyer can review your disclosure and help you decide:
- if any disclosure is missing
- if you should set a date or
- if the police or the Crown have violated you Charter rights
- if you have any legal defences
You can hire a paralegal to represent you if you have been charged with a that has a maximum of:
- 2 years in jail,
- a $5,000 fine, or
Ask for a Crown pre-trial
Once you have enough disclosure to understand the Crown's case against you, you can schedule a Crown pre-trial. At the Crown pre-trial, you can talk about how your case could be resolved and if you can have . Even if you weren't screened for diversion earlier, a lawyer can help convince the Crown you should have it.
Ask for an if you receive late disclosure.
The Crown must give you all your disclosure before your trial starts so you can prepare. If the Crown gives you new disclosure close to or on your trial date, you can ask the judge for an adjournment. An “adjournment” means a later trial date. Let the judge know that the Crown gave you disclosure late and that you need time to review it.
To ask for an adjournment on the day of your trial, explain the situation to the judge as soon as possible. Tell the judge that the Crown gave you disclosure late and that you need time to review it. The judge will either grant the adjournment and set a new trial date or deny the adjournment and your trial will go ahead.
If you get disclosure close to the trial date and want an adjournment, email the Crown as soon as possible. Explain that you want an adjournment to review the late disclosure. If the Crown agrees to the adjournment, you can work together to ask the judge for the adjournment.
The judge might:
- agree to the adjournment and set for another date for your trial
- tell you they want to hear more about the situation and schedule a
- deny the request and keep the trial date
If the Crown does not agree to the adjournment, you must apply to the court for the adjournment. To apply for an adjournment, you need to fill out a Notice of Application and file it with the court. The judge may grant, deny, or ask to hear more about the adjournment request.