Generally speaking, a section 810 peace bond is Canada’s version of a “restraining order.” Section 810 of the Criminal Code of Canada sets out the statutory procedure to obtain an Order that requires a person to keep the peace and be of good behavior, in the absence of a formal criminal prosecution.
Where a person fears that another person will cause personal injury to themselves or to their spouse or child, or will damage their property, that person can have an Information laid seeking a peace bond against that person.
An Information is laid by attending at the Justice’s Office and swearing that the allegations you are making are true. Once an Information has been laid against the other party, a hearing must be held at which a Judge or Justice of the Peace will decide whether to order the defendant to enter into a peace bond. The informant will be required to give evidence under oath about the allegations in at the hearing and may be cross-examined on their evidence by the defendant or the defendant’s lawyer.
If the court is satisfied on reasonable grounds that the informant fears for their safety or damage to their property, the court can issue a peace bond requiring the defendant to “keep the peace and be of good behaviour”. In addition to requiring that the defendant “keep the peace and be of a good behaviour”, a peace bond may also set out specific conditions intended to protect a person or a specific type of property. The most common conditions contained in peace bonds require that the recipient not be within a specific distance of the informant or the informant’s family, refrain from going near the informant’s property, not communicate with the informant or the informant’s family, and/or that the defendnat not be in possession of any weapons or firearms.