8 Things Related To Subpoenas

A subpoena is a document that is issued by the Court requesting documents to be provided to the defence by the accusing party. It is one of the most basic tools of the criminal lawyer Toronto.The most obvious and generally used subpoenas are for bank records and telephone records.

Bank records can be used, for example, to undermine a witness’s testimony that they had gone out and had a small dinner without any alcohol.Subpoenas for telephone records or call charge records can be used to show where a person was relative to mobile phone towers at a given time. This is an invaluable means of disproving some allegation against a client.

The only limits on subpoenas are how creative your lawyers are and whether a Judge accepts them as having a legitimate forensic purpose.Through the courtesy of experienced Criminal lawyers Toronto, here is 8 things to think about with subpoenas in Toronto.

Do Not Receive or Accept Document from the Same Person Who was Issued the Subpoena:

The produced documents are to be handed to the Court. Do not fall into the trap of having a person ring you and then give you the documents.

The Court has issued the subpoena.

The documents get delivered there and then released to the defence.

Proper Legal Officer (In Case You Don’t Know the Business):

If you are uncertain who the subpoena should be made out to for an If you are uncertain who the subpoena should be made out to for a company or corporation then issue it to the “proper legal officer”.

Send Notification to the Other Party:

You are not strictly obliged to but you should forward the other side a copy of your subpoenas and the date on which you have listed them for.

You are not strictly obliged to but you should forward the other side a copy of your subpoenas and the date on which you have listed them for.

There Should be a Legitimate Forensic Purpose:

The Toronto criminal lawyer defending your case must identify expressly and with precision the legitimate forensic purpose for which the documents are sought. Obviously attacking the credit of a witness is a legitimate forensic purpose

Defence rather than Judge decide what use to make of material:

Once you establish a legitimate forensic purpose it is not for the Court to decide whether anything in the document

Once you establish a legitimate forensic purpose it is not for the Court to decide whether anything in the document would, in fact, assist the defence.

Even if the documents themselves would not be admissible subpoena them anyway:

You may never use the actually subpoenaed documents in Court because they would not be admissible. However, their admissibility is not a relevant consideration as to whether you can subpoena them.

Oppression – narrow your subpoena:

The main issue with subpoenas is when they are too wide and, therefore, compliance with them would be too oppressive. The party subpoenaed can make that claim especially in the situation where they are effectively being left to decide what they should hand over as being relevant.

Watch out for costs:

The Courts are generally very good at protecting indigent people from costs in relation to subpoenas. But be careful not to cast your net too wide if it is a private client and the recipient of the subpoena has deep pockets or is a big corporation.

The Courts are generally very good at protecting indigent people from costs in relation to subpoenas. But be careful not to cast your net too wide if it is a private client and the recipient of the subpoena has deep pockets or is a big corporation.

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