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Personal costs against defence counsel reserved for ‘serious misconduct’: SCC

Friday, May 12, 2017 @ 4:22 PM | By Cristin Schmitz

In a case some feared could chill zealous advocacy, the Supreme Court has restored a $3,000 personal costs award made against a Quebec defence counsel who was found to have filed “unfounded and frivolous” bias motions against a judge in order to get the adjournment the judge incorrectly denied during an impaired driving case.

Justice Clément GasconJustice Clément Gascon’s 7-2 judgment May 12 confirms that courts have inherent jurisdiction and discretion to award personal costs against criminal lawyers in order to maintain respect for judicial authority...