Sentencing – 253 and 254

Offences under Section 253 and Section 254 of the Criminal Code have stiff sentences. These are the offences of impaired driving, driving over 80, and failure to provide samples. All offences under these sections have the same minimum sentences:

  1. First offence: minimum $1000 fine
  2. Second offence: minimum 30 days
  3. All subsequent offences: minimum 120 days (4 months)

Because these are minimum sentences, the judge cannot go easier on you.

The maximum sentence for these charges varies depending on whether the Crown is proceeding by indictment (for more serious matters) or by summary conviction (for less serious matters).

For an indictable charge under Section 253 or 254, the maximum sentence is 5 years. For a summary conviction charge, the maximum is 18 months (1 ½ years). However, if one of these offences causes bodily harm to another person, it automatically becomes an indictable offence with a maximum sentence of 10 years. If the offence causes death, there is a maximum sentence of life in prison.

Sentences for multiple charges may run either concurrently (at the same time) or consecutively (one after the other).

(no harm caused)
(causing bodily harm)
MAXIMUM (causing death)
First offence$1000 fine18 months (summary)
OR 5 years (indictable)
10 yearsLife in prison
Second offence30 days18 months (summary)
OR 5 years (indictable)
10 yearsLife in prison
All subsequent offences120 days18 months (summary)
OR 5 years (indictable)
10 yearsLife in prison

Aside from any fines or prison time, offences under Sections 253 and 254 may also lead to additional license suspensions and driving prohibitions.

Disclaimer: this article is for information purposes only and is not legal advice. For legal advice, contact Matt Gould now to discuss your case.