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AJ Murray Legal Services P.C. Blog

  • Writer's pictureJoey Clavette

Should I appeal my Quarantine Act offence?

Though the Quarantine Act had been around for years, it was very rarely used until the COVID-19 pandemic. I have written somewhat extensively about it elsewhere.

With the advent of the pandemic, orders began being made under the emergency section, and thousands of people got tickets for infringing these orders. Circumstances included not getting the ArriveCan App, failing to do a certain test or to do it right, not booking a “Government Approved Accommodation”, or failing to provide a Quarantine Plan, to name a few examples.

Whatever the reason you got the ticket, you might be on the receiving end of your fine, which is steep. The legislation in Ontario needed to be amended to allow for the fines to be increased, eventually setting travellers in the hole by about $6500 per ticket.

Perhaps you were convicted of one or more of these tickets, and now, looking back, you think it was wrong.

You might think you are without recourse, but it is possible to appeal, and perhaps in your best interest. Here are a few reasons you might want to consider an appeal:

You plead guilty

This one might sound a little strange, and you might think that since you plead guilty, you can do nothing to get it back. Not so. As I wrote elsewhere [link article], not only can you appeal your guilty plea, but sometimes, your guilty plea can be the reason for the appeal.

You were convicted outside of the 18-month ceiling

Every person in Canada has the right under the Charter to a right to be tried in a reasonable amount of time, and for an offence like this, that time is seen to be 18-months. There has been debate about the delay that COVID-19 itself caused, but if you had to wait a long time for your conviction, you might want to consider an appeal.

You didn’t break the law

Perhaps you did everything you could to comply, but the Quarantine Officer, the prosecutor, and the judge did not see it that way. If you think there was an error in your conviction, it’s worthwhile considering an appeal.

An appeal is a complicated process that can be costly and may have a high chance of failure. It is best to consult with a legal professional before proceeding with an appeal.

About the Author

Joey Clavette

Licensed Paralegal and Notary Public

AJ Murray Legal Services P.C


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