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Toronto Assault Charges Lawyer

How can a victim meet with the Crown Attorney in domestic cases?

Victims often want to meet with the Crown ASAP to try to get the charges dropped or have the no-contact conditions removed.

Each Crown Attorney’s office in Ontario has different policies in regards to meeting with alleged domestic victims to discuss their case. In person face-to-face meetings with the Crown are usually a rare occurrence outside of trial or sentencing hearing dates. When someone is newly charged with a domestic violence (intimate partner) offence their first several court appearance dates are simply “set date” or “adjournment date” appearances meaning no decisions are being made on that day.

When new charges are laid the victim may choose to show up at the courthouse themselves to try to meet with the Crown to discuss the case. Since the courts are open to the public they have every right to be there however they are usually only witnessing the setting of a new court date. Every criminal case will have court appearance dates until it is completed.

The victim may only get to briefly speak with the Crown calling the list in court that day who is usually not the decision maker on the file.

Another problem with the victim just showing up at court is that the list calling Crown is often not the decision maker on your spouse’s file and is also not in a position to discuss the case because they are busy “on their feet” calling all of the names on the docket. In person court appearances are also far more limited in 2023 as the Ontario Court of Justice (OCJ) now operates remotely and the Crown will usually be appearing virtually via Zoom from home or their office at the courthouse.

While the accused, victims, and anyone else is still free to attend in person at the courthouse, most people will be calling in from home. This includes the Provincial Court Judge or Justice of the Peace or and often the Crown. The victim is usually unable to simply approach and start talking to them.

Is it ever a good idea for the victim to show up at the courthouse to try to talk to the Crown on the court date?

While this is usually a waste of time, there is the possibility that the Crown Attorney calling the list will be both the Crown assigned to the file and have the time to discuss the case. Crowns generally do want to move cases along and if the victim is lucky to run into the right Crown at the right time it may be beneficial.

At smaller courthouses in Ontario outside of Toronto there is a greater chance that the Crown calling the docket will actually be handling the files themselves. Those outside of Toronto may have a slighter higher chance of success with this approach. Some GTA jurisdictions such as Durham, Halton and York Region will -sometimes- take a more direct approach in agreeing to meet in person with alleged victims/witnesses. There is some "luck of the draw" involved in this and obviously no guarantees.

Takeaway: The Crown Attorney calling the list in the courthouse is often not assigned to the alleged victim's spouse/partner’s file nor are they in a position to review the case while they are calling the list. In 2023 the calling Crown is often working remotely from home or their office via Zoom.

How can the victim meet with the Crown as soon as possible to restore contact and try to drop the charges?

Crowns generally like to operate in an organized, structured, by appointment type manner. They generally don’t like being approached in the courtroom or hallways of the courthouse. Most Crown offices in Ontario have specific ways in which they normally accept victim input in domestic cases.

The most common methods of victim communication with the Crown in Ontario are:
  1. Through the Victim Witness Assistance Program (aka VWAP or Victims Services) office. The victim may be referred to VWAP to obtain the input and wishes of the complainant regarding the prosecution. VWAP may collect input over the phone, via Zoom, or in person. Each VWAP office also operates under seemingly different policies, but input may be limited to “wants contact or not” at some locations.

  2. Through the police officer in charge of the case (OIC). The Crown may ask the police officer who laid the charges to follow up with the complainant. The OIC will often place a phone call from an Unknown number to the complainant but could also attend in person at their place of residence to follow up.

  3. Calling the victim themselves. Some Crowns prefer to reach out to the complainant directly to discuss the case with them. They will normally not do this until later on in the process meaning after the disclosure (evidence) is fully available. Usually this is sometime after the first court appearance date. For most complainants who want to establish contact asap this is often far later in the process than they are hoping it will be.
Each of these methods have two undesirable things in common from the perspective of most victims who want to help: they occur long after the accused is charged and only offer very limited opportunity for victim input.

This is because the Crown will not have any evidence from the police right after the charge is laid. Most police forces in Ontario will submit their evidence to the Crown within 30 - 60 days of laying charges, but sometimes it takes longer. Even after the evidence is provided to the Crown it will still need to be vetted and screened (reviewed by a Crown). It is only after these processes are complete that the Crown is in a position to receive input from the victim.

Another problem with these methods is that they usually do not give the victim the opportunity to fully explain what happened and how the charges are negatively impacting their family. The victim and accused may share finances, living arrangements, children, or have a business/professional relationship with each other (operate a business together or work for the same employer).

The VWAP office or police officer in charge of the case (OIC) may simply be communicating a yes/no response from the complainant regarding contact that does not properly put what happened into context and address the complexities of the situation.

If I meet with the Crown will they consent to a variation to add an exception to the Undertaking (Form 10) or Release Order (Form 11) to allow for contact right away?

The Crown will not usually consent to change the release conditions without positive victim input stating they want contact and do not fear the accused. They also will be assessing the seriousness of the allegations, history of the accused, and any steps taken to mitigate potential risks (counselling). The wishes of the victim are an important part of this decision but definitely not the only one.

The Crowns are also generally aware that while an offence may have occurred (assault, utter threats, mischief, etc,), the victim will often want to reinstate contact with the accused as soon as possible. Alleged domestic victims are often surprised that the police laid criminal charges and do not want their spouse/partner to go to jail, get a criminal record, have problems with IRCC/immigration, etc. as a result of the charges.

Since the vast majority of these alleged victims were unaware that no-contact conditions and criminal charges would be put in place when they called the police or 911, having the victim want to make it all “go away” afterward is quite common.

Creating a supporting victim affidavit and submitting it to the Crown Attorney directly to try to help the accused

Victims also have the option to hire a lawyer to create a supporting victim affidavit (aka affidavit of non-prosecution). This process is generally considered the gold standard of helping out the accused because it is a legally binding document that is submitted to the Crown and becomes evidence in the case. Unlike the contact methods listed above, creating an affidavit allows the victim to fully explain to the Crown what happened and what they want to happen.

Every case is different. Some people want full contact and to resume their relationship right away. In other cases, the relationship (at least romantically) may be over, but the couple may share parenting, financial, and sometimes business responsibilities that still need to be managed. Just because a relationship is over doesn’t mean the victim wants to see the parent of their child go to jail and get a criminal record.

Sometimes victim input is that they want the accused to get counselling or help with problems that may have led to calling the police (alcohol, drugs, anger, jealousy, issues with boundaries, etc.). They may want to regain contact to manage their affairs and for the accused to be able to work freely without a criminal record. If the accused is in the immigration system the victim may not want them to be deported.

Affidavits are custom made and crafted to fit the circumstances of the case

In creating an affidavit, the lawyer will meet with the victim to fully discuss what happened and what they want to happen moving forward (ie. regain contact, charges dropped, counselling, etc.). The affidavit is then crafted in a way that expresses any misconceptions about what happened and what they want the Crown and courts to do with the case.

Just like every case is different, every affidavit is also different and customized to the specific circumstances of the victim and the accused. For more information on creating an affidavit for the Crown, please see the following two pages:
  1. Affidavit services for victims: General/basic information about domestic affidavits and their potential benefits to the accused and the victim.

  2. FAQs about victim affidavits: Far more detailed and specific information about the victim affidavit creation process.

Call us today for a free assessment

You don't have to jeopardize your future or waste thousands of dollars on excessive legal fees. Our goal is to have the charges withdrawn and the release conditions varied to allow contact without a risky and unnecessary trial. We provide effective and affordable lawyer representation for those charged throughout all of Ontario, Canada.

You don't need to be apart from your spouse and family, spend tens of thousands of dollars, and risk getting a criminal record because of an unfortunate domestic incident. Have a skilled criminal lawyer protect you and your future from the stigma and consequences of a criminal record.

    call us: 647-228-5969


  call us: 647-228-5969


Your case will be defended by a fully licensed Practicing Lawyer of the Law Society of Ontario. For more information about our lawyer, click here.

We provide our clients with:
  • Flat fee pricing
  • US travel advice and information
  • Employment background check advice/services
  • Fingerprints and records destruction services
  • Clear goals of getting charges dropped and bail conditions varied without a trial
  • Help with related immigration issues
  • Vulnerable Sector records suppression help
  • Experienced, focused counsel

* Please note:

If you are the alleged victim, and are looking to help your spouse/partner's case, please see our affidavit services page here.

If you are not a paying client, we cannot answer questions and provide assistance with U.S. travel, immigration, employment background checks, and avoiding a criminal record. This includes those who have already retained other counsel and those whose cases have already been completed. We also only take calls/emails relating to Ontario, Canada area cases.

Are you a lawyer? If you are defending a domestic assault/uttering threats/mischief related case and are looking for expert advice regarding possible defences, case strategies, and information release management call us at: 647-228-5969.

Please note: We do not accept legal aid certificate cases. All clients are handled on a private retainer only.


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  We provide:
  • Flat fee pricing
  • 99%+ non-conviction success rate
  • U.S. travel advice and information
  • Help with related immigration issues
  • Employment background check advice/services
  • Fingerprints and records destruction services
  • A clear goal of getting the charges dropped without a trial
  • Vulnerable Sector records suppression help
  • Timely resolutions
  • Lawyer/client privilege
  • Experienced, focused counsel