You’ve been charged with domestic assault in Ontario and you’ve come to our law firm to retain us and the first thing you say to us, this is a common question, look my wife or my husband they want this non-association condition dropped. When you are released on bail in that situation you can’t communicate or associate with your significant other pending the trial or your guilty plea. Can I get this dropped? The very short answer to that question is absolutely not.

It’s the question angers clients when they hear the answer frankly, and it irritates them. I say look they simply will not do that. The Crowns have a mandate and directive that they will not drop the non-association condition. There’s valid reasons for that because in the past it occasionally was done many many years ago, maybe even before I was practicing as a Crown myself 30 years ago where they would delete it pending the trial and someone would wind up dead or hurt. It’s nothing to do with you. It’s just a policy because it prevents harm in the province.

So what’s going to happen? If you decide to plead guilty for example, and your significant other or boyfriend or girlfriend, or husband or wife, wants you back in the home the Crown may ask for counselling. For example you might have to do some counselling for several weeks before you go back and there would be what is called a revocable consent where they take you back in the home but they could phone up the police at any time and say look I’m revoking my consent. They phone up the probation officer and you’re out of the house. That’s called revocable consent. If you head to trial same thing. If we win your trial say 12 months to 15 months down the road you can go back home. If you lose your trial well the Judge has to decide whether revocable consent will apply. If the victim says yes I would like the person home then you are going to get revocable consent again. So that’s the short answer.

Unfortunately, you’re not going to get those conditions dropped unless and until you either plead guilty or win your trial or even lose your trial as long as the victim wants you back home or in their life.

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