A summary offence is a less serious offence. It’s similar to the American concept of “misdemeanour”, but not exactly the same. In Canada, criminal offences are divided into two major categories: summary or indictable. Hybrid offences may be treated as either summary or indictable. If you have a criminal record for a summary offence, the waiting period is five years after the completion of your sentence before you can apply for a record suspension, also called a pardon.
Summary offences are considered less serious offences under the Criminal Code. The maximum sentence is usually a $5,000 fine or up to six months in jail, although it may be higher for certain offences. If you do not know whether your conviction was a summary or indictable offence, you may be able to get that information from your court records.
Examples of summary offences include making harassing phone calls, taking a motor vehicle, and causing a disturbance. Some hybrid offences include uttering threats and assault.
When the Parole Board of Canada receives an application for a Record Suspension for a summary offence, it is supposed to render a decision within six months. However, due to backlog and government delays, as well as the long process of putting the application together to begin with, it could take a total time of two years to get your pardon.
Even if your conviction was based on a summary offence and you have completed your time, your criminal record can prevent you from getting a job or travelling freely outside of Canada. You can request a Record Suspension in order to help you move forward. Our experts can help you work efficiently to get it done as soon as possible.