Criminal Defence

It is important to know your rights when you are charged with a criminal offence. Our lawyers are here to help. At CIR Law Inc. we take a personalized and dedicated approach to representation. Our lawyers take on the following criminal cases:

  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI) /Impaired Driving
  • Motor Vehicle Offences (speeding, dangerous driving, and more)
  • Youth Criminal Justice 
  • Record Suspension (Pardons) applications

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FAQ - Pardons

What is a pardon?

The term record suspension is now used instead of "pardon". You can apply to the Parole Board of Canada (PBC) for a pardon. A record suspension is evidence of the fact that the PBC is satisfied that the applicant is of good conduct and that their criminal conviction should no longer reflect adversely on their character. 

Does a record suspension erase my criminal record?

No. A record suspension does not erase your criminal record. A record  suspension means that your criminal record must be kept separate and apart from other criminal records and that it cannot be disclosed to anyone including police. Also, the fact that you had a criminal record cannot be disclosed. 

Do I have to wait to apply for a record suspension?

Yes. You must wait five years for summary convictions and ten years for indictable convictions. 

Do I need a record suspension if I was discharged?

No. Your criminal record is automatically purged from the database after one year for an absolute discharge or three years for a conditional discharge. Note that you must complete all conditions including those in probation orders. 

Can I travel to foreign countries once I have a record suspension?

Maybe. Each country has their own laws governing travelling with a criminal record. PBC suggests contacting the authorities in the country you wish to travel to before travelling. For instance, your criminal record may have been entered into the US database before you were granted a record suspension. You may require a US Entry Waiver to enter the United States.  

Are any crimes ineligible for a record suspension?

Yes. The Criminal Records Act has a list of ineligible crimes in Schedule 1. Also, you are not eligible if you have more than three convictions prosecuted by indictment, each with a prison sentence of two or more years. 

Contact a criminal lawyer

CIR Law Inc.

5536 Sackville St., Suite 700

Halifax, Nova Scotia 

B3J 1L1


Phone: (902) 423 - 6900

Fax:  (902) 704-5511

Email us