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January 17, 2013.docx

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University of Waterloo
Legal Studies
LS 202
Frances Chapman

January 17, 2013 Adversarial System  Disputes between parties are resolved by IMPARTIAL decision maker (judge) after hearing evidence of both sides based on law  Judge can jump in and ask questions if they want to do so but normally they don’t  In case of unrepresented people they may try helping the party who is unrepresented  Crown has a duty to prove beyond a reasonable doubt – very close to the guilty part of the spectrum versus 50% for balance of probabilities, not level of certainty but close to it  Jury – number of challenges are dependent on crime that has been charged  Representative and impartiality are characteristics jury must have (Justice Laskin) Hierarchy of Courts  Provincial courts are bottom level – most important for us is Ontario Court of Justice o By Justices of the Peace o Under control of higher courts, includes; youth court, family court and traffic court o Gives preliminary hearings o Power is given to these provincial courts for very specific offences such as keeping gaming house or driving while disqualified  Supreme court is at the top  Superior court is higher than Ontario court of justice but lower than Supreme  Trial Courts in Canada o Section 469 says that some offences must be tried by Provincial Superior Court of Justice – Treason, murder and all other serious matters o Other indictable offences can be tried in this level of court o Have more options in terms of what kind of judge you want, if you like a jury or not etc. o Appeals from provincial court criminal division and family law courts if they were started at the lower level  Courts of Appeal o Reviews decision of lower courts o Not seeing witnesses – based solely on the law, very limited time o Panel of 3 judges o Apply law to the facts that were presented at the trial o Trial = facts, Appeal = legal rules  Supreme Court of Canada is the highest leve
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