When you are served with a violation ticket in BC, such as for speeding or using an electronic device while driving, you have 30 days from the date you are served the ticket to register a dispute either in person or by mail.  If you fail to do so, after 30 days you are deemed to have pleaded guilty to the offence. Likewise, if you fail to attend a scheduled hearing at traffic court, the Judicial Justice of the Peace can make a determination to treat your matter as “deemed not disputed” which results in it being treated as a finding of guilty. Sometimes people fail to do this and believe that they have no avenues with which to pursue a dispute of their matter

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A case was recently decided by the Supreme Court of British Columbia that will have a huge impact on how distracted driving laws are enforced and decided in provincial court.  The decision in the case is that “use” is a necessary element of the offence.  Most people have not read the Motor Vehicle Act or the Use of Electronic Devices while Driving Regulation so they are not familiar with what “use” actually means in this context.  Most people assume that they must be speaking on the phone, texting or holding the device.  This is not accurate.  The Regulations state that “use” includes: watching the screen of a device, holding the screen of a device, operating one of its functions and communicating orally via the device.

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Many people don’t realize the various roadside prohibitions, driving offences or measures the government, or more specifically the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles (AKA RoadSafetyBC), can take to revoke a person’s driving privileges.  Given how important licenses are to person’s livelihood, we know how important it is to assist our clients get their driving prohibitions cancelled.

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There have been some major changes to impaired driving laws in the past year, on both Provincial and Federal Levels.

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