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Court System Essay

1463 words - 6 pages

The basic role of the Canadian court system is to deliver justice between two individuals or two individuals and the state. There are four levels of court in Canada. Provincial courts are the lowest in terms of power. They handle most of the day to day cases. The next court in terms of power is the provincial and territorial superior courts. These courts take care of the more serious crimes that are admitted into the system, and can also take appeals from provincial court judgments. Another that has the same amount of power as the provincial and territorial superior courts is the Federal Court. Next are the provincial courts of appeal and the Federal Court of Appeal. The court with the most power in Canada is the Supreme Court. All members of the judiciary in Canada, regardless of the court, are taken from the legal profession.

Each province and territory has a provincial court. All cases involving either federal or provincial laws take place here. These courts don’t particularly have similar names, but they follow the same rules. Provincial courts deal with the most cases, most of which include: provincial regulatory offences most criminal offences, traffic violations, family law, young offenders. Private disputes involving money can also be dealt with at this level in Small Claims courts. As well, all preliminary inquiries take place before the provincial courts. Some provinces and territories have domestic violence court programs. These programs provide services to victims. There are specific courts set up for certain offences. The object is to address the needs of non-violent offenders who are charged with criminal offences. Youth courts handle cases that have someone with the age of 12-17 is charged with an offence. Depending on the age of the youth, different precautions are taken, for example privacy protection. Courts at either the provincial or superior court level can be designated youth courts. These courts are often referred to as inferior, but are only called that to show the difference in power between the other courts, and it’s ranking with them.
The superior courts of each province and territory both have a court of general trial jurisdiction and a provincial court of appeal. Something different about these courts is that they have more power than just their own province. They have power over areas where the federal government is granted legislative. So, if federal legislation calls at some point of judicial authority, it is assumed that that authority will reside with these courts. Each province and territory has a court of appeal division that hears appeals from decisions of the superior courts and provincial courts. The number of judges varies per court, but a court of appeal usually has three. The courts of appeal also hear constitutional questions involving governments or governmental agencies. Superior courts are the courts of first instance for divorce petitions, civil lawsuits and criminal prosecutions for indictable...

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