Third-Party Relief from Forfeiture Orders

AuthorSteve Coughlan/Alex Gorlewski
370 Post-trial Matters / Special Post-conviction Procedures / Forfeiture of the Proceeds of Crime
4.2(c)(ii) Third-Party Relief from Forfeiture Orders
Is someone’s property interest
aected by a forfeiture order?1
Relief from forfeiture
Were they charged with or
convicted of an oence resulting in
the order?2
Have they connived in a transfer of
property to avoid forfeiture?3
Do they appear innocent of
complicity or collusion in the oence
resulting in the order?4
The court may make an
order exempting the property
from forfeiture5
In some cases, forfeiture orders may aect the interests of innocent third par-
ties. This chart illustrates applications for third-party relief from forfeiture
after those orders are made, when “the dispute is no longer . . . between the
oender and the Crown, but . . . between the Crown and the third-party ap-
plicant”: R c 170888 Canada Ltée (1979), 135 CCC (3d) 367 at para 41 (Que CA).
(Relief from forfeiture is also available before forfeiture orders are made, as
explained below.) Anyone with an interest in property that is aected by a for-
feiture order, other than someone charged with or convicted of a designated
oence resulting in the order, or who connived in a transfer of property to
avoid forfeiture, may apply in writing to a superior court judge within thirty
days of the order being made for relief: see s 462.42(1) of the Criminal Code,
RSC 1985, c C-46 [Code]. If the judge is satised that the applicant meets these
conditions, and also that they appear “innocent of any complicity in any des-

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