Impaired Driving and DUI in Ontario – Things to Remember

A charge of DUI in Toronto or anywhere in Ontario is a serious offence with equally serious punishments and other consequences. Far from what most people think that it only means a license suspension and some fines, a DUI conviction can mean huge fines, jail time, losing the privilege to drive, and can impact you throughout life. Below are some other things to remember about impaired driving and DUI in Canada.

You Can Be Stopped and Tested Even When You Were Not Operating A Vehicle

Most people think that they can only be charged with impaired driving if they were operating a vehicle but being inside a vehicle while intoxicated is enough to be asked to submit to a breathalyzer test and possibly be charged with a DUI. Officers now have a two-hour period from when you were pulled over to administer the test according to the provisions of House of Commons Bill 46-C as of 2018. This means that in a scenario wherein you were observed to walk out of a bar intoxicated with a friend, and an officer saw you approaching your vehicle, the officer has a reason to ask you to submit to a test within a two hour period. If it were found that you have a blood alcohol level of above 80, then a DUI arrest is possible. Note that refusing to take the test can likewise lead to an arrest.

Can You Get A Summary Conviction or A Criminal Conviction for A DUI Charge?

A DUI conviction is classified as a criminal conviction in Canada. Note that the law can’t do any further action towards you until it has been confirmed that you were truly intoxicated over the legal limit.

What Happens After A DUI Conviction?

The consequences for a conviction vary by a lot depending on whether you have previous similar offences and convictions in the past. A fine is guaranteed but jail time may or may not happen. Your vehicle may also be installed with an ignition interlock device plus you might be required to attend a rehabilitation program. You may need to undergo some type of evaluation as well if you’re still planning to drive in the future.

How About Losing Driving Privileges?

There is a huge possibility of losing your driving privileges for some time. This can be as little as 30 days or longer. In most instances, the court will issue some requirements that you have to follow for your driving privileges to be restored. Note that repeat offenders can lose driving privileges permanently.

How Long Does a Conviction Remain on Someone’s Record?

This varies from one Canadian province to the next but in Ontario, this is present in someone’s driving record for three years with day one marked as the day of conviction.

Can A DUI Conviction Show Up on Background Checks?

The short answer is yes, and this can be viewed by prospective lenders, employers, and insurance providers. On the other hand, an arrest without conviction is not likely to appear in a background check.

Will a DUI Conviction Affect Employment Opportunities and Insurance Premiums?

Yes to both. This is why it is better to avoid a DUI conviction by making sure that you have a solid DUI defence so that future employers will not disqualify you and insurance providers will not charge you higher premiums.

Never underestimate the role of a DUI lawyer in defending a DUI charge. Hiring a good DUI defence lawyer is fighting for your future. If you need a DUI lawyer in Toronto, contact Calvin Barry.


Here’s How to Brighten a Life This Holiday Season

Every now and then we come across a great initiative that we want to share with our friends and clients. This is one of them.

Every December 25th Marnie Grundman does something very special for the homeless in our great city. Watch the video below.

Here’s how to take part!

From Marnie:

Our greatest need is backpacks.
Below are a few links where you can order as well as my shipping address. If you find a less expensive option please let me know 🙂

The one thing we do want to make sure of is that there are wheels on the backpack (no duffle bags please) to lighten the load for the person who is carrying all of their worldly possessions.

SHIP to: 

Marnie Grundman
902-88 Cumberland Street
Toronto, Ontario

Click to order here Backpack #1

Click to order option #2 

Current needs

  • 96 Backpacks
  • 68 gift cards to Tim’s, McDonald’s or Subway in $15 denominations. Gift cards provide food, a moment of shelter AND bathroom access.

NEW items (unisex)

  • 18 pairs of Heavy socks
  • 74 hats
  • 81 pairs of gloves
  • 80 scarves
  • 100 large long sleeve undershirts (XL or XXL)
  • 83 travel packs of wet-ones
  • 100 travel size hand sanitizer (the Dollar Store has 2 packs available)
  • FILLED! travel packs with toothpaste and toothbrushes
  • 51 tubes of chapstick
  • 100 snack packs – cheese and crackers, protein bars, goldfish etc.,
  • 86 journals
  • 60 pens 
  • FILLED combs
  • 100 manicure kits
  • 100 travel shaving kits
  • Large bags of chocolate or assorted candies
  • Large boxes of bandaids
  • Large boxes of tampons (all types of feminine products are welcome)
  • 2 large bags of dog food

To contact Marnie directly, please visit:

Best Ways to React When Arrested for Impaired Driving in Toronto or the GTA

Most people do not have any idea what to do if they have been pulled over or arrested for impaired driving. It is also difficult to think about what actions are the best when you’re scared, confused, worried, or in shock over getting arrested for impaired driving. Below are some suggestions by an impaired driving lawyer to make it easier for you to deal with the situation.

Stay Calm at All Times

Although it may be very aggravating to be confronted by a police officer, it is in your best interest to remain calm and focused even when things are not. Making any gesture or action that can make it look like you are not in control of your emotions such as flailing your arms or raising your voice can make things harder for you. By remaining calm, you will be able to remain focused on the situation and what the officer is saying. This will let them know that you’re rational and cooperative.

Cooperate with the Authorities

When you’re arrested for impaired driving, you must cooperate with the police officer no matter what your personal feelings may be. Cooperating includes submitting to a breathalyzer test on the scene. Note that although you can refuse to take the test, doing so may lead to more difficulties and additional charges with severe penalties.

Remain calm and cooperate when the officer asks you to perform several tests at the scene. You may be asked to repeat tongue twisters or to walk in a straight line as a way to test your level of intoxication. Even if the results of the tests lead to an arrest, know that cooperating will be noted on the documentation and will sway things in your favour should you go on trial.

Get a Lawyer as Soon as Possible

The officers should tell you that you have a right to a DUI lawyer. If they don’t, you can request to contact a legal representative as soon as possible. The officers should provide you with a way to get in touch with your legal counsel and if you can, inform them that you wish to talk to your lawyer before proceeding with the rest of the processes for an arrest.

Refrain from Answering Questions Until Your DUI Lawyer Is at Your Side

You have the right to defer further questioning until your lawyer arrives. The best scenario is to resume questioning when you have your lawyer at your side so that your lawyer can advise you during the questioning.

If you can, be sure to take notes of all the details that you can remember because your lawyer will need all the information you can recall related to your charge. Your DUI lawyer will also want to know what happened before, during, and after your arrest and will ask to see the police report to compare with what you have to say. These things are done by your DUI lawyer to make sure that your rights are observed and to look for information that can be used in your defence.

An Arrest Does Not Have to Mean a Conviction

Some people think that pleading guilty is the best thing that they can do after they are arrested for impaired driving in Canada. That is far from being one of your best options for defence. What you should do is to hire a DUI lawyer as soon as you can to make sure that you do not make mistakes that you will regret later. Never underestimate the role of a DUI lawyer in your defence. If you’re looking for a DUI lawyer in Toronto, call Calvin Barry today.

DUI and Impaired Driving Charges – Facts That You Should Know

Some people think that impaired driving charges only apply to those who were involved in an accident or those who were visibly intoxicated when they were pulled over. The truth is that driving under the influence and impaired driving applies to more situations which can be better explained by a DUI lawyer. If you have been arrested for impaired driving or arrested for a DUI and you are not sure why, it is best to remain calm and be careful about what you say because small mistakes can easily lead to a conviction. Below are some of the most important things to remember if you’re facing DUI and impaired driving charges.

The Vehicle Does Not Have to Be Running or Moving

You can be arrested for a DUI even if you’re only waiting in your parked vehicle for someone to drive you home. The engine does not have to be running and the vehicle does not have to be moving for an arrest to be valid. If you’re intoxicated, it is best to stay outside of your vehicle while waiting for another driver or someone to pick you up.

It is Still A DUI Even Without A Car

Being in any type of vehicle can lead to a DUI arrest. If you’re inside any type of vehicle, it is still possible to charge you with impaired driving because the idea behind the arrest is that you are still a possible danger to yourself and others when you’re inside a vehicle while intoxicated.

Alcohol is Not the Sole Substance to Watch Out For

Having too much to drink is just one reason for a DUI arrest. Being intoxicated in any substance that can affect the senses and perception can result in a DUI charge. This means that if you’ve used medications that can cause drowsiness such as the common side effect for anti-allergy medications, there is a potential for this to lead to a DUI charge in Canada.

Rejecting A Breathalyzer Test Can Lead to An Impaired Driving Charge

If you have been approached by an officer to take a breathalyzer test, the smartest thing to do is to comply because this will work in your favour no matter whether you’re intoxicated or not. If your blood alcohol level has not reached the legal limit, you may only receive a warning. If your blood alcohol level is above the legal limit, your actions with how you complied and how you behaved during the arrest can help you avoid a conviction. On the other hand, if you refused a breathalyzer test, the officer will have to arrest you and the resulting consequences can be very challenging to defend even for a seasoned impaired driving lawyer.

The above is just a glimpse of the important things that you must remember if you’re involved in a DUI charge. Note that a DUI charge is a serious case that needs top-notch defence. If you are looking for a DUI lawyer in Toronto, be sure to contact Calvin Barry.

The Role of A DUI Lawyer in Your Defence

A common mistake of those who have been charged with a DUI is to think that it is not a serious offence and that they can just defend themselves or wait for a court-appointed lawyer to be sent their way. The fact is that a DUI charge in Canada is a criminal offence that can have life-long consequences that affect several aspects of one’s life. The best way to address it is to avoid a DUI conviction with the help of a DUI lawyer who has a long track record of successful defences. Note that avoiding a DUI conviction is not always possible and the only way to find out if your defence is strong enough is to book a DUI lawyer for a consultation.

Your DUI Lawyer Can Let You Know About Your Rights

One wrong move can mean a DUI conviction and wrong moves are usually brought upon by ignorance about the law and your legal rights. For example, you are entitled not to disclose some information to law enforcement prior to having a lawyer. If you are not aware of this, you could end up giving the prosecution a whole line of possible charges that they can hurl against you by talking too much.

Your DUI Lawyer Can Submit Paperwork for You to Avoid Missing Deadlines

Several legal documents need to be filed when you are charged with a DUI. Missing deadlines can look bad for you and may even result in a conviction in some cases. An example is failing to submit dashcam footage on time. If you missed the deadline for submission, you will be sabotaging your own defence because the footage is needed to get key evidence that can be used for your defence. This can also be taken as an admission of guilt or trying to avoid a trial. This is just one example. Many similar deadlines can look like nothing important but can be important factors in the development of your case.

Your DUI Lawyer Will Negotiate Plea Bargains with the Prosecutor

One of the most ideal ways of handling a DUI charge is to not go on trial by entering a plea agreement. If your defence is not strong enough, going to trial has a higher chance of getting a conviction and a plea bargain can help you avoid that. Your DUI lawyer has an expert understanding of how the court functions and what defences can work or not. By opting for a plea bargain negotiated by your DUI lawyer, you can minimize the negative effects of a DUI charge on your life.

Why Book A DUI Lawyer for Consultation?

A good DUI lawyer will be able to give you the information you need to avoid possible mistakes even before the trial takes off. Any interaction you have with law enforcement concerning your case can be used against you. For your own interest, it is best to be legally guided regarding the answers that you will provide. If you’re looking for a DUI lawyer in Toronto, contact Calvin Barry now! Calvin Barry is a Toronto DUI lawyer with over 3 decades of legal experience.