Rules of the Municipal Courts
Rules of the Municipal Courts
Regulations and other acts
Gouvernement du Québec
O.C. 950-2005, 19 October 2005
An Act respecting municipal courts
(R.S.Q., c. C-72.01)
Courts of Justice Act
(R.S.Q., c. T-16)
(R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)
Rules of the municipal courts
WHEREAS section 56.2 of the Act respecting municipal courts (R.S.Q., c. C-72.01) provides that a majority of the municipal judges, in agreement with the chief judge, may adopt uniform rules of practice applicable to all municipal courts in matters necessary for the exercise of their jurisdiction, either at a meeting called for that purpose by the chief judge or through any other means whereby the chief judge may consult them, that the rules of practice must be compatible with the provisions of the Act respecting municipal courts and the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure (R.S.Q., c. C-25) and the Code of Penal Procedure (R.S.Q., c. C-25.1), that the rules of practice are subject to the approval of the Government and that the provisions of the Regulations Act (R.S.Q., c. R-18.1), except sections 21 to 24, apply to the rules;
WHEREAS section 24.1 of that Act provides that the associate chief judge of the Court of Québec who is responsible for municipal courts shall exercise, under the authority of the chief judge of the Court of Québec, the functions exercised by the chief judge in respect of municipal judges and municipal courts pursuant to the Act respecting municipal courts, in addition to the functions assigned to the associate chief judge by the Courts of Justice Act (R.S.Q., c. T-16);
WHEREAS a majority of the municipal judges, in agreement with the associate chief judge of the Court of Québec responsible for municipal courts, adopted a draft of the Rules of municipal courts on 16 April 2004;
WHEREAS, in accordance with sections 10 and 11 of the Regulations Act, the draft Rules were published in Part 2 of the Gazette officielle du Québec of 2 June 2004 with a notice that they could be approved by the Government on the expiry of 45 days following that publication;
WHEREAS, under subsection 482(2) of the Criminal Code (R.S.C. 1985, c. C-46), every municipal court in the Province of Québec may, subject to the approval of the lieutenant governor in council of the province, make rules of court not inconsistent with that Code or any other Act of Parliament;
WHEREAS the rules of court related to the exercise of the criminal jurisdiction were adopted by all the municipal courts;
WHEREAS it is expedient to approve these Rules with amendments;
IT IS ORDERED, therefore, on the recommendation of the Minister of Justice:
THAT the Rules of the municipal courts, attached to this Order in Council, be approved.
Rules of the municipal courts
An Act respecting municipal courts
(R.S.Q., c. C-72.01, s. 56.2)
Courts of Justice Act
(R.S.Q., c. T-16, s. 98, 3rd par., subpar. 2)
(R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46, s. 482(2))
PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO ALL MATTERS
1. Unless the context indicates otherwise,
(a) “case” means any stage of a criminal, penal or civil proceeding and a motion or application;
(b) “court” means a municipal court of Québec;
(c) “clerk” means a clerk, deputy clerk or replacement clerk;
(d) “judge” means a municipal court judge;
(e) “president judge” means, in a court where judges exercise their functions exclusively and on a full-time basis, a judge appointed by the Government to preside over a court and includes the associate president judge where that judge replaces the president judge;
(f) “judge responsible for the court” means, in a court composed of more than one judge, a judge designated by the Government as the judge responsible for the court;
(g) “parties” means the Queen, the prosecuting party, the prosecution, the defendant, the intervener, the impleaded party or the opposing party.
Time Limits and Powers Exercised Pursuant to These Rules
2. Time limits or requirements. A president judge, a judge responsible for the court or a judge may, for serious reasons, shorten a time limit or grant an exemption from a requirement under these Rules.
3. Powers. Unless he or she is absent or unable to act, the powers assigned to a president judge or a judge responsible for the court under these Rules shall not be exercised by a judge of his or her court.
Access to Records
4. Consultation of a record. A record or exhibit filed may be consulted only in the presence of the clerk or a person designated by the clerk.
5. Copies of documents. A person may obtain a copy of documents or exhibits filed in the court record on payment of the required fees.
6. Removal of a record. A record may be removed from the office of the court only at the request or with the authorization of the judge or the clerk.
7. Removal of an exhibit. After the expiry of the time limit for appeal from the final judgment or the sentence, a party may, upon giving a receipt therefor, remove an exhibit filed by the party, unless the exhibit has been seized.
8. Courtrooms. The president judge or the judge responsible for the court shall determine the use and purposes of available courtrooms.
9. Judges. The president judge or the judge responsible for the court shall designate the judges who are to preside in the courtrooms of the court.
10. Assignment of cases. The president judge or the judge responsible for the court shall assign the cases to the judges assigned to the court.
Written Motions and applications
11. Reference to relevant provisions. Every motion or application shall indicate the title and the reference to the statutory or regulatory provision on which it is based.
12. Filing at the office of the court. Every motion or application shall be filed at the office of the court at least three (3) clear juridical days before the date of presentation.
Every oral application for inscription on the roll shall be made at the office of the court within that time limit.
Rolls of the Court
13. Preparation. The roll of the court shall be prepared by the clerk under the authority of the president judge, the judge responsible for the court or the judge.
14. Contents of the roll. The roll shall contain the name of the judge presiding over the hearing, the name of the clerk, the record numbers, the names of the parties and, where applicable, the name of the attorney, the nature of the offence, motion or application, the date and time of the sitting and the courtroom number.
15. Roll of the court. Before the hearing, a copy of the roll shall be delivered to the judge and copies made available to the parties for consultation.
16. Posting of the roll. The clerk shall see to the posting of the roll at the entrance to the courtroom or at any other location designated by the president judge, the judge responsible for the court or the judge.
17. Fixing of the dates of sittings. The sittings of the court shall be fixed by the president judge, the judge responsible for the court or the judge, in all cases, after consulting the clerk.
18. Time of sittings. The sittings of the court shall be held in the morning, afternoon or evening after 6:00 p.m. or at any time fixed by the president judge, the judge responsible for the court or the judge, in all cases, after consulting the clerk.
19. Minutes of the hearing. The clerk shall draw up the minutes of the hearing which shall include the names of the parties, their attorneys and witnesses, the exhibits and documents filed during the hearing, the amendments and admissions, the nature of the objections, the decisions rendered and any other particular the judge may require.
20. Classification of exhibits. At the hearing, the clerk shall classify the exhibits by letter, in numerical order.
Order, Dress Code and Decorum
21. Persons present. All persons present at the hearing shall rise when the judge enters the courtroom and remain standing until the judge is seated. At a recess or adjournment, they shall rise again and remain standing until the judge has retired.
22. Opening of the session. At the opening of the session, or at an adjournment or recess, the clerk or the person acting as usher shall say aloud: “Silence. All rise please.”
At the opening of the session, the clerk shall add : “The Municipal Court of is now in session, the Honourable presiding.”
Once the judge is seated, the clerk or the person acting as usher shall invite those present also to be seated.
The clerk shall announce any recess or resumption.
When the judge leaves the bench, the clerk or the person acting as usher shall invite those present to rise and no one shall leave until the judge has retired.
23. Calling of the roll. The clerk shall call the roll in the presence of the judge.
24. Language and demeanour in the Court. Every person speaking in the court shall be courteous and respectful.
Every person addressing the judge or a witness shall, except with leave of the judge, rise and remain standing.
25. Decorum. No conduct or demeanour which interferes with the dignity and good order of the court is permitted. During the hearing, no person shall engage in conversation with another person, address the clerk or consult a record, except with leave of the judge.
26. Good order at hearings. During hearings, no person shall read newspapers, take photographs, film, make audio or video recordings, make radio broadcastings, use pagers or cellular telephones in a resonant mode, drink, eat or chew gum.
The media are authorized to record the proceedings and the decision on audiotape, unless the judge decides otherwise; no broadcasting of any such recording is, however, permitted.
27. Dress in court. Every person appearing before the court shall be suitably attired.
28. Dress code for attorneys. Unless otherwise ordered by the judge, no attorney shall address the court unless dressed as follows:
(a) male attorneys and articled students shall wear conservative trousers, jacket, shirt and tie or a black robe;
(b) female attorneys and articled students shall wear a conservative skirt or trousers with a blouse and jacket or a dress, or a black robe.
29. Adjournment. Where a party foresees being unable to proceed on the date set for the trial or hearing, the party shall immediately notify in writing the other parties or their attorney and the judge presiding the hearing, indicating the reason, and request an adjournment, unless exempted from doing so by the judge.
30. Annulment of the summoning of witnesses. Only a party or a witness concerned may, by motion to the judge, request the annulment of the summoning of a witness in a case on the roll for hearing or trial.
31. Recording in the minutes of the hearing. Where a motion for adjournment is granted, the reasons for the adjournment shall be recorded in the minutes of the hearing.
Oral or Written Arguments
32. Copy of jurisprudence or doctrine. A party relying on jurisprudence or doctrine shall provide a copy to the judge and the parties, indicate the relevant pages and highlight the extracts cited.
33. Copies of statutory or regulatory provisions. A party relying on statutory or regulatory provisions other than those set out in the Constitution Act, 1982, (R.S.C. 1985, App. II, No. 44), the Criminal Code (R.S.C. 1985, c. C-46), the Canada Evidence Act (R.S.C. 1985, c. C-5), the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (S.C. 1996, c. 19), the Charter of human rights and freedoms (R.S.Q., c. C-12), the Code of Penal Procedure (R.S.Q., c. C-25.1), the Highway Safety Code (R.S.Q., c. C-24.2), the Civil Code of Québec or the Code of Civil Procedure (R.S.Q., c. C-25), shall provide, on request, a relevant extract to the judge and the opposing party.
SPECIFIC RULES FOR EACH MATTER
Criminal and Penal Matters
Marginal note:§1. Motions and applications
34. Form. Except on an order of the judge or unless otherwise provided by law, all motions and applications presented to a judge pursuant to the Criminal Code, the Code of Penal Procedure or these Rules shall be presented orally and without notice.
35. Written motion or application. All written motions and applications shall set out the facts and grounds supporting them; they shall be accompanied by an affidavit and notice.
36. Period of service. Unless the judge decides otherwise, a written motion or application shall be served on the opposing party or that party’s attorney with notice of at least three (3) clear juridical days.
37. Service on an attorney. Service on an attorney shall be effected, in the case of the prosecution, at the office of the attorney of the municipality concerned, and in the case of the defendant’s attorney, at the attorney’s elected domicile.
Marginal note:§2. Conduct of the proceedings
38. Representation before the court. The attorney of record may be represented by an associate or another attorney mandated for that purpose.
39. Absence at the calling of the roll. An attorney who knows that his or her client will not be present in the courtroom when the client’s name is called must nonetheless be present before the court.
40. Withdrawal after appearance. An attorney who has appeared for a defendant may not withdraw from the record except with leave of the judge on presentation of a motion to withdraw served on the defendant and the opposing party, unless the attorney is exempted from such service by the judge seized of the motion.
41. Content of the notice of hearing. The notice of hearing given to the defendant in penal matters shall contain the provisions of articles 62 and 63 of the Code of Penal Procedure.
42. Place of the defendant. The defendant shall remain in the assigned place or beside his or her attorney throughout the trial, except with leave of the judge. The defendant shall rise and remain standing during the reading of the information laid and the pronouncement of the judgment or the sentence, except with leave of the judge.
Marginal note:§1. Written proceedings and exhibits
43. Written proceedings. All written proceedings shall be legibly written on one side of a good quality sheet of paper measuring 21.5 x 35.5 cm; the nature and object of the proceeding, the amount in dispute, the record number, the names of the parties and the name, address, postal code, telephone number, fax number and computer code of the attorney of the party filing the proceeding shall be indicated on the backing.
If a party is not represented by an attorney, the attorney’s computer code and fax number are not required.
44. Signing of proceedings. A proceeding filed by a party shall be signed by the party’s attorney. If the party is not represented by an attorney, the proceeding shall be signed by the party.
45. List of exhibits. Where a list of exhibits is submitted, the list shall enumerate and identify the exhibits to which it refers.
46. Numbering by the clerk. The clerk shall number a proceeding or exhibit on receiving it.
47. Numbering of exhibits. Each exhibit shall bear a number preceded by an identifying letter attributed to each party and which shall be used until the end of the proof. There shall be only one series of numbers per party.
48. Designation of the parties. The parties shall, in all proceedings, retain the same order and designation as in the proceeding introductive of suit.
49. Medical record and expert’s report. A medical record or an expert’s report prepared by a physician, a psychologist or a social worker that is filed in the record shall be kept in a sealed envelope and no person, except the parties or their attorneys, shall have access without authorization from a judge who shall fix the conditions. Access to such documents entitles the parties or attorneys to make copies, at their own expense.
Marginal note:§2. Motions
50. Service by fax. Proof of service by fax shall be stapled to the back of the original of the document served.
51. Motion for particulars. Each paragraph of a motion for particulars shall bear the same number as the paragraph of the proceeding to which it refers.
52. Amendments. Should a proceeding be amended, the additions or replacements shall be underlined or indicated in the margin by a vertical line and deletions shall be indicated by means of a dotted line in parentheses.
53. Particulars. Where particulars to a proceeding have been ordered, a new proceeding incorporating the particulars as provided in the preceding section shall be filed in the record within the allotted time.
Marginal note:§3. Judgments
54. Sending of the record for advisement. Before sending the record to the judge for advisement, the clerk shall ensure that it is complete. If the record is incomplete, the clerk shall so notify the attorneys so that they may take the necessary steps to complete it.
55. Taking of a case under advisement. No case shall be taken under advisement until the record has been completed, unless the judge decides otherwise.
56. Coming into force. These Rules come into force on the fifteenth day following the date of their publication in the Gazette officielle du Québec.
- Date modified: