The Right to have a Lawyer

The youth’s right to have a lawyer is very important and he or she is reminded of that often. A youth must have the opportunity to talk to a lawyer as soon as possible and at every step in the criminal process. A judge will not allow a youth to plead guilty unless he or she understands the criminal charge, understands the options (guilty or not guilty), and understands the fact that he or she might get a sentence. If a youth goes to court without a lawyer, a duty counsel (lawyer paid by the government) will be there to help.

When a youth is arrested or held at the police station for questioning, the police must tell the youth’s parents about the arrest. The parents are also told about the youth’s right to have a lawyer.

Justice Education Society Citizenship and Immigration Canada Welcome BC City of Vancouver