Impaired Driving Criminal Code in Canada Latest Update

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Impaired Driving Criminal Code in Canada

Yeah, it’s true that no matter how careful you are on the road, an accident can happen at any time. Maybe you were very careful, but another was not, eventually the accident occurred. The same may happen to you too.

For example, you have taken drugs or alcohol, or you are feeling sleepy. At that time, you are not in a sense to drive a car. It can be very dangerous, which is under impaired driving.

People who don’t follow traffic rules and get punishment according to the criminal code. It is called the impaired driving criminal code. All the citizens of Canada should know this.

Here we will give you the latest update on the impaired driving criminal code in Canada. So, let’s get started.

What is Impaired driving?

Before going to the main discussion, we all should know what impaired driving is. It doesn’t mean only drunk driving.

Impaired driving means the person driving has not the ability to drive for consuming alcohol, drug, or something else. More clearly, it means you are driving when you are not in full control of yourself. These are as follows:


Perhaps, you are tired, or somehow you are feeling sleepy. At that time, if you drive your vehicle on the road, it will be impaired driving.


Maybe, you are an alcoholic somehow, and driving your vehicle, will be impaired driving.

Legal or illegal drugs

We all know there are two types of drugs, legal and illegal. If someone takes the drug in these ways, he will not be in the situation to drive a vehicle. At that time, if someone drives a car breaking all the rules, it will be impaired driving.


Different types of distractions, when driving your vehicle, like using your phone, conversing with someone through phone, texting, and many other things, can be a cause.

Here the rule is, stopping the vehicle, complete your emergencies, and then carry on your driving. But, if you drive your car and texting someone else by phone, it will be impaired driving.

Medical conditions:

Suppose you are sick, and you don’t have the ability to drive your vehicle, but you are driving, it will be impaired driving. These are mainly different impaired driving situations.

Impaired driving criminal code in Canada

The criminal code is basically a law for establishing and ensuring punishment for the criminals. Impaired driving is a crime, and it also has a criminal code. These are as follows:

Immediate roadside suspension:

If you are convicted of impaired driving, the first punishment for you is an immediate roadside suspension. Police will suspend your license as soon as possible after catching you.

Here the suspension of your license will be started when police will serve the notice of suspension. This suspension will stay until you are resolved from all the charges and get the court’s paperwork.

Vehicle impoundment:

After the suspension of your license, police will impound your vehicle. These impoundments are based on the driver’s action. The vehicle you are driving at that time will be seized by the police for 30 days even if the car is not yours.

Impaired driving education:

After suspending and seizing your vehicle, you will have to complete an impaired driving education program. The court will send you a letter of outlines at that time. If this is your first offense, you need to complete the Driving Without Impairment (DWI) program.

If this one is your second time, you have to complete the Alcohol and Drug Education (ADE) program, and for a third or subsequent time, you need to complete the Addiction assessment education program.

Mandatory ignition interlock:

After completing all those steps, now another restriction you will get for your offense. That is, installing an interlock ignition device. It will be mandatory for you if you want to drive again.

You must keep the device in your car for one year if your first offense is in the last ten years. If this is your second time, you have to keep it for three years, and for the third and subsequent time, it will be for ten years.

If you remove this device from your car, then your license will be canceled. You have to reinstall it for driving your car.


Now let’s talk about the other penalties for serious cases regarding impaired driving according to Canada’s criminal code. These are the penalties for everyone who commits impaired driving, according to section 255 of the criminal code:

Without indictment:

If someone is convicted of impaired driving, s/he will be liable for$600 fines if s/he does it for the first time. If it is his or her second time within the last ten years, s/he will be liable for imprisonment for fourteen days most, and for each subsequent impaired driving, s/he will be liable for 90days imprisonment most.

With indictment:

If the indictment prosecutes your offense, you will be liable for five years imprisonment at most. If your impaired driving causes any bodily harm, you can be liable for ten years of imprisonment at most. Lastly, if it causes death, you will be liable for 15 years of imprisonment at most.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

There has some frequently asked question regarding impaired driving criminal code in Canada. Here are the most common frequently asked questions with the best answers:

What section of the Criminal Code of Canada is impaired driving?

The criminal code of impaired driving is written in section 255 in the criminal code of Canada. This section describes two different but related offenses. This section mainly prohibits driving when you don’t have the proper ability to do it, which is called impaired driving, and provides legal punishment to the wrongdoer.

What are the penalties for impaired driving in REGINA?

If you drive with over 0.08 percent of blood alcohol content level in the whole Manitoba province, you may get different types of penalties. Here the minimum fine is $1000. If it is your first time, you will inevitably get 30days imprisonment with a 1-year driving license suspension. You will get 120 days imprisonment with five years suspension of your driving license for the second time.

Is Impaired Driving an indictable Offence in Canada?

The answer is yes. Definitely, impaired driving is an indictable offense. In Canada, impaired driving is called a hybrid offense. You will get different types of penalties for it depending on the seriousness of your cases. You may get up to 15 years of imprisonment if any accident happens for your impaired driving.

What are the consequences of impaired driving?

There have some serious consequences of impaired driving in Canada. First of all,the police will suspend your driving license. Then they will seize your vehicle that you were driving at that time. If your impaired driving causes an accident, you may get up to fifteen years imprisonment.

After that, you have to complete some impaired driving education programs, and you need to install an ignition interlock device for the next three years. These are mainly the consequences of impaired driving in Canada.

What is considered legally impaired?

0.08 percent of blood alcohol content (BAC) level is considered legally impaired in Canada. There has a reasonably significant reason for that. Actually, having this level of alcohol in someone’s body is not bad. Even s/he will still have the ability to drive the car. So, the thing is, 0.08 percent alcohol level is legal for you, and you can definitely drive freely at that time.

What are the new impaired driving laws in Canada?

There are some new impaired driving laws in Canada. It has some key changes to the previous laws. Now the quantity of fines is increased up to $2000. Impaired drivers have to complete some new mandatory education program for the repeated offense.

Besides, the length of the driver’s license suspension for repeated offenders is increased now. The length of having mandatory ignition interlock is also increased in this new law. These are mainly the up-gradation of the new impaired driving laws in Canada.


Impaired driving can be very dangerous for the driver and the other vehicles on the road or the pedestrians. The number of incidents of impaired driving is increasing day by day.

According to a statistic, 55.4% of car crashes were caused by impaired driving. So, you can imagine how excessive it is. However, in this article, we have given you the impaired driving criminal code in Canada. It is high time to take some necessary steps. Stop impaired driving and live a safe life.