If you received a marijuana possession charge before October 17, 2018, you faced 6 months in jail for up to 30 grams of product prior to other related offences including trafficking, intent to traffic or production.
In 2016, approximately 55,000 Canadians were charged with possession of cannabis. So, what happens to them now that the substance has been decriminalized and legalized?
The government is pledging to waive both the standard waiting period and fee for a pardon with no clear timeline. Though this won't completely remove the crime from a person's criminal record, it does separate it from other criminal records. Because there is no clear timeline, and with standard record suspension processing times of 6-12 months, it's too early to say what the future holds for those convicted of possession charges.
You can, however, start the process with these 10 steps & documents required for a record suspension application:
This step requires electronic fingerprint submission through a police service of a company with an electronic submission device. Once complete, you will receive your Criminal Record.
Proof of fine payments, restitution, convictions and methods of trial for each conviction are required for this step.
This step is only necessary for either former or current members of the Canadian armed forces. You will need a signed and dated copy of your conduct sheet.
These documents are only valid for 6 months after being issued, so make sure to keep this in mind. You'll need police record checks for the city/town you currently live in, as well as previous cities/towns of residence where you lived for more than 3 months in the last 5 years.
Of course, you'll need proof that you are a Canadian citizen or appropriate immigration documents. These documents must be valid and current.
You will require a government-issued proof of ID that includes your name, signature and date of birth. When providing this document, make sure it's a clear photocopy not an original.
If you have been convicted for a Schedule 1 offence, you will need to complete and submit the Exception Form. Schedule 1 includes sexual offences involving a child, and are not necessary for marijuana possession.
Fill out the Record Suspension Application Form legibly using blue or black ink and only block letters. Additional pages are permitted should you need more space. This form is only valid for 6 months.
Download this form and complete all sections. The purpose of this form is to show how a pardon will benefit your rehabilitation into society.
At this step or stage, you'll want to make sure you have all the required forms outlined above, as well as the processing fee which is currently $631.
A pardon may help get your life back on track; however, it does not equate to expungement or free travel into countries like the United States.
If you have any questions or need assistance with the documents for a marijuana record suspension application, contact the law offices of Daniel Topp today. We'll be glad to help get you back on track and keep your record clean.