Minimal Sentence for Sexual Assault in Canada

The first thing you need to know is that these cases are serious and complex, and there are many variables at play. The minimum sentence for sexual assault in Canada varies according to the nature and extent of the offence. If you’ve been charged with a sexual crime, you need to contact a criminal defence lawyer so they can fight for the best possible outcome.

Factors Affecting the Severity of a Sexual Assault Sentence

If you are convicted of sexual assault, both mitigating and aggravating factors will affect the sentence. Mitigating factors can result in a reduced charge or a less severe penalty. They include the accused person’s age, whether they enter an early guilty plea, and whether they’ve been convicted of crimes in the past. Aggravating factors can result in the imposition of a sentence that’s well above the minimum sentence for sexual assault in Canada. They are more numerous than the mitigating factors, and they include:

  • The age of the victim and the offender’s knowledge of their age
  • The degree of force or violence used
  • Whether the offender was in a position of authority
  • Whether a weapon was used
  • The extent of the victim’s vulnerability
  • Whether there was penetration
  • The likelihood that the individual will re-offend

All About Minimum Sentences in Canada

A mandatory minimum sentence is the lowest penalty a judge must order after an individual has been convicted. Judges have the discretion to issue sentences that are above the minimum, but they can’t go below. There is a mandatory minimum sentence for sexual assault only if the victim is younger than 16 years of age. In more serious cases where the Crown Attorney prosecutes the case by indictment, the minimum punishment must be one year in jail, while the maximum sentence is 14 years in jail.

If the complainant is 16-years-old or over, there’s no mandatory minimum sentence for sexual assault in Canada. However, if the case is indictable, the maximum sentence is ten years. Summary convictions can result in a maximum of 18 months in jail. The minimum sentence is a discharge when a person is found guilty of an offence but is acquitted.

Discharges can be either conditional or absolute. With an absolute discharge, you’ll be free to go. You won’t have a criminal record, and the record of your discharge will be expunged after a year. However, if a judge gives you a conditional discharge, you’ll have to undergo a probationary period. In sexual assault cases, the judge usually orders the individual not to contact the victim in any way. After the probation period has been completed, the conditional discharge becomes absolute.

When Sentencing is More Severe

What we’ve discussed so far generally applies to cases of simple sexual assault. However, if you or a loved one has been convicted of sexual assault causing bodily harm, the most severe penalty is 14 years imprisonment unless a firearm is involved.

If the offender uses a restricted or prohibited gun in the course of the assault, the mandatory minimum sentence for sexual assault in Canada is five years. If another type of firearm is used, the starting point is four years. However, if the victim is under 16-years-old the minimum penalty is five years in jail.

Meanwhile, if the complainant sustains particularly severe injuries, the offender may face a charge of aggravated sexual assault. The minimum sentencing guidelines are the same as for sexual assault causing bodily harm. However, the maximum penalty is life in jail.

Get Sound Legal Advice from Vilkhov Law!

As you can see, you can face severe penalties if you’re convicted of sexual assault. You could spend several years in jail, depending on how serious the court deems your actions to be. If you want to avoid conviction or get the lowest possible sentence, you need strong legal representation. Sexual assault cases can be both emotionally taxing and complicated, so you need an experienced lawyer throughout the process. Contact the team at Vilkhov Law today for expert advice and sound representation. Your first consultation is free, so you have nothing to lose by contacting us.

By |2021-04-22T17:28:31+00:00April 22nd, 2021|Sexual Assault|
Criminal Lawyers Association
Toronnto Lawyers Association
Law Society of Ontario
Criminal Lawyers Association
Toronnto Lawyers Association
Law Society of Ontario

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TESTIMONIALS

Thanks Igor for all your help throughout my criminal process. I have never been charged before and I think Igor really helped ease my nerves through the entire process. When I was initially charged I called a couple of other firms but I ended up retaining Igor because when we spoke on the phone he spent a lot of time to explain what I was charged with and what it all means, I felt the most comfortable when talking to him. As my case progressed, he really took the time to explain my options and the probability of each one, so I really appreciated that and I felt less confused with all the various legal proceedings.
My son was charged with DUI and I hired Igor to represent his matter. Overall, my experience with Igor was great and my son felt really comfortable working with Igor as well. As a parent, I was really concerned about the entire process and even though my son is considered an adult, I was extremely involved the entire time. I really liked that Igor respected my concerns as a worried parent and always ensured any meetings or conversations were held with me present as much as possible, if I wasn’t available to attend a meeting and only him and my son were able to meet, Igor would reach out to update me. I would most definitely recommend Igor to others.
He is caring, honest, and highly knowledgeable in his field. I was charged with domestic assault a few months ago, I was initially with another lawyer but got fed up with the unresponsiveness (didn’t answer my calls or emails), I decided to look for someone else. Igor came highly recommended from a friend and I’m glad I went with him. He knows his stuff and fought hard for my case. Compared to other lawyers I’ve dealt with, day and night.
I cannot recommend Igor Vilkhov enough. I was charged with possession and trafficking, I was going through a tough time in my life at the time and I am glad I was able to find a lawyer who is genuinely passionate about what he does. I was kept consistently updated throughout the entire process and I couldn’t believe the positive outcome. While reviewing my case, he located a significant error on the part of the police. I can honestly say that his work is meticulous and his ability to negotiate is something else. If you are looking for a quality criminal defence lawyer, I can’t say enough good things about Igor.

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