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CHAPTER 83

OF THE

REVISED STATUTES, 1989

amended 1992, c. 36, s. 7(1)

NOTE - This electronic version of this statute is provided by the Office of the Legislative Counsel for your convenience and personal use only and may not be copied for the purpose of resale in this or any other form. Formatting of this electronic version may differ from the official, printed version. Where accuracy is critical, please consult official sources.

An Act to Provide for the Payment of
Compensation in Respect of Persons
Injured or Killed by Certain Criminal
Acts or Omissions of Others

Short title

1 This Act may be cited as the Compensation for Victims of Crime Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 1.

Interpretation

2 (1) In this Act,

(a) "Board" means the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board;

(b) "child" includes an illegitimate child and a child to whom a victim stands in loco parentis;

(c) "dependant" means a spouse, child or other relative of a deceased victim who was, in whole or in part, dependent upon the victim for support at the time of his death and includes a child of the victim born after his death;

(d) "injury" means actual bodily harm, mental or nervous shock, pain or suffering;

(e) "peace officer" means a peace officer as defined in the Criminal Code (Canada);

(f) "victim" means a person injured or killed in the circumstances set out in subsection (1) of Section 7.

Spouse for purpose of Act

(2) The Board may direct that persons were spouses of each other for the purposes of this Act where the Board finds that

(a) although not married, they cohabited as man and wife and were known as such in the community where they lived; and

(b) the relationship was of some permanence,

and the Board may direct that any person to whom a victim or applicant was married and who was living apart from the victim or applicant under circumstances that would have disentitled such person to alimony was not a spouse of the victim or applicant for the purposes of this Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 2.

Application of Act

3 (1) This Act applies in respect of claims for compensation arising from an injury or death resulting from an act or omission that occurs on or after the twelfth day of May, 1981.

Limitation on application for compensation

(2) No compensation shall be paid pursuant to this Act unless an application for the compensation was made before the twenty-eighth day of April, 1992.

Victims Services Act

(3) Sections 23 and 32 are subject to the Victims Services Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 3; 1992, c. 36, s. 7.

Administration of Act

4 (1) The Attorney General is responsible for the administration of this Act and may designate persons to act on his behalf.

Administration by Board

(2) Subject to subsection (1), this Act shall be administered by the Board or such other body, board or commission as may be determined from time to time by the Governor in Council. R.S., c. 83, s. 4.

Criminal Injuries Compensation Board

5 (1) The Criminal Injuries Compensation Board is hereby established and shall be composed of not fewer than three and not more than five members who shall be appointed by the Governor in Council for such term as the Governor in Council determines, and the Governor in Council shall appoint one of such members as Chairman and one or more of them as vice-chairmen.

Remuneration and expenses

(2) A member of the Board who is not an employee of the Government may be paid such remuneration for his services and such allowance for his travelling and other expenses as the Governor in Council may determine.

Quorum

(3) Two members of the Board, one of whom must be the Chairman or a vice-chairman, constitute a quorum and are sufficient for the exercise of all the jurisdiction and powers of the Board.

Powers and duties of Chairman

(4) The Chairman shall have general supervision and direction over the conduct of the affairs of the Board and shall arrange the sittings of the Board and assign members to conduct hearings as circumstances require.

Personnel

(5) Subject to the approval of the Attorney General, the Board may appoint a Secretary to the Board and employ such investigators, clerks, stenographers or other persons as it may require or deem advisable for the purpose of the carrying out of the provisions of this Act and the salaries or compensation of such persons shall be paid by the Board and shall form part of the annual expenses of the Board.

Powers of inquiry

(6) The Board, and each member thereof, has for the purposes of this Act all of the powers and immunities that are conferred upon a commissioner under the Public Inquiries Act.

Public Service Superannuation Act

(7) For all purposes of the Public Service Superannuation Act every full-time employee of the Board shall be deemed to be a person employed in the public service of the Province, and full-time service in employment of the Board shall be deemed to be public service.

Deduction from salary

(8) The Board shall deduct from the salary of every full-time employee of the Board such amount as is directed by the Governor in Council to be deducted from the salary of employees in the public service of the Province and shall pay the same to the Minister of Finance, and such amount when so received shall be paid into and form part of the Superannuation Fund under the Public Service Superannuation Act.

Superannuation payment as expense of Board

(9) Where by the Public Service Superannuation Act any payment is directed to be made into the said Superannuation Fund by the Government or by the Minister of Finance or where by such Act any superannuation allowance or other sum is directed to be paid out of the Consolidated Fund of the Province, then in respect of any full-time employee of the Board such payment, superannuation allowance or other sum shall be defrayed by the Board and shall form part of the annual expenses of the Board. R.S., c. 83, s. 5.

Annual report

6 (1) The Board shall, in each year, make a report to the Governor in Council of its transactions during the fiscal year ending in that year, and the report shall contain such particulars as the Governor in Council may prescribe.

Tabling of report

(2) Every report shall be forthwith laid by the Attorney General before the House of Assembly or, if it is not in session, within fifteen days after the opening of the next session.

Publication of information

(3) The Board shall from time to time publish and distribute such information in respect of the business transacted by the Board as in its judgement may be useful. R.S., c. 83, s. 6.

Order for compensation

7 (1) Where any person is injured or killed by any act or omission in the Province of any other person occurring in or resulting from

(a) the commission of an offence within the description of any criminal offence mentioned in the Schedule;

(b) lawfully arresting or attempting to arrest any offender or suspected offender, or assisting a peace officer in making or attempting to make an arrest; or

(c) lawfully preventing or attempting to prevent the commission of any offence or suspected offence, or assisting a peace officer in preventing or attempting to prevent the commission of such offence or suspected offence,

the Board, on application therefor, may make an order that it, in its discretion exercised in accordance with this Act, considers proper, for the payment of compensation to

(d) the victim;

(e) a person who is responsible for the maintenance of the victim;

(f) where the death of the victim has resulted, the victims dependants or any of them or the person who was responsible for the maintenance of the victim immediately before his death or who has, on behalf of the victim or his estate, incurred an expense referred to in clause (a) or (f) of subsection (1) of Section 9.

Subsection (1) does not apply

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply in respect of the injury or death of a peace officer occurring under circumstances entitling him or his dependants to compensation payable out of public moneys under any other Act of the Province or of the Parliament of Canada or payable by an organization that is supported in whole or in part by public funds.

Minimum claim or award

(3) Where a claim is for less than two hundred and fifty dollars, no application shall be entertained by the Board and where the award determined is less than two hundred and fifty dollars no award shall be made. R.S., c. 83, s. 7.

Time limit

8 An application for compensation shall be made within one year after the date of the injury or death but the Board, before or after the expiry of the one-year period, may extend the time for such further period as it considers warranted. R.S., c. 83, s. 8.

Items to be compensated

9 (1) Compensation may be awarded for

(a) expenses actually and reasonably incurred or to be incurred as a result of the victims injury or death;

(b) pecuniary loss or damages incurred by the victim as a result of total or partial disability affecting the victims capacity for work;

(c) pecuniary loss or damages incurred by dependants as a result of the victims death;

(d) pain and suffering;

(e) maintenance of a child born as a result of sexual assault;

(f) other pecuniary loss or damages resulting from the victims injury and any expense that in the opinion of the Board it is reasonable to incur.

Additional compensation

(2) Where the injury to a person occurred in the circumstances mentioned in clause (b) or (c) of subsection (1) of Section 7, the Board may, in addition to the compensation referred to in subsection (1), award compensation to the injured person for any other damage resulting from the injury for which compensation may be recovered at law, other than punitive or exemplary damages. R.S., c. 83, s. 9.

Notice of hearing

10 (1) Where an application is made to the Board, the Board shall fix a time and place for the hearing of the application and shall at least ten days before the day fixed cause notice thereof to be served upon the applicant, upon the Attorney General, upon the offender where practicable and upon any other person appearing to the Board to have an interest in the application.

Content of notice

(2) The notice of hearing shall contain

(a) a statement of the time and place of the hearing;

(b) a reference to the rules of procedure applicable to the proceedings;

(c) a concise statement of the grounds for the application; and

(d) a statement that, if a party who has been duly notified does not attend at the hearing, the Board may decline to award any compensation or may proceed in his absence and he is not entitled to notice of any further proceedings. R.S., c. 83, s. 10.

Parties to proceeding

11 (1) Every person upon whom notice of a hearing is served and any other person specified by the Board is a party to the proceedings.

Proceeding in absentia

(2) If any party to the proceedings does not attend the hearing, the Board may proceed in the partys absence. R.S., c. 83, s. 11.

Dispensing with hearing

12 With the consent of the applicant, the Board may make an order for compensation without a hearing and Sections 10 and 11 do not apply. R.S., c. 83, s. 12.

Adjournment of hearing

13 (1) A hearing may be adjourned from time to time by the Board on reasonable grounds

(a) on its own initiative; or

(b) on the request of any party to the proceedings.

Witnesses

(2) The Board may, in the prescribed form, command the attendance before it of any person as a witness.

Power to require documents and evidence

(3) The Board at a hearing may require any person to

(a) give evidence under oath; and

(b) produce such documents and things as the Board may require.

Admissibility of evidence

(4) The Board may receive in evidence any statement, document, information or matter that in its opinion may assist it to deal effectually with the matter before it, whether or not the statement, document, information or matter is given or produced under oath or would be admissible as evidence in any court of law.

Proof of conviction is evidence

(5) If a person is convicted of a criminal offence in respect of an act or omission on which a claim under this Act is based, proof of the conviction shall, after the time for an appeal has expired or, if an appeal was taken, it was dismissed and no further appeal is available, be taken as conclusive evidence that the offence has been committed.

Protection where self-incriminating evidence

(6) A witness at a hearing shall be deemed to have objected to answer any question asked him upon the ground that his answer may tend to criminate him or may tend to establish his liability to civil proceedings at the instance of the Crown, or of any person, and no answer given by a witness at a hearing shall be used or be receivable in evidence against him in any trial or other proceedings against him thereafter taking place, other than a prosecution for perjury or an offence against Section 136 of the Criminal Code (Canada) in giving such evidence.

Offences by witness

(7) Any person who without lawful excuse

(a) on being duly summoned as a witness before the Board makes default in attending;

(b) being in attendance as a witness before the Board, refuses to take an oath legally required by the Board to be taken, to produce any document or thing in his power or control legally required by the Board to be produced by him or to answer any question to which the Board may legally require an answer; or

(c) does any other thing that if done in a court of law would be contempt,

is guilty of an offence punishable pursuant to subsection (8).

Inquiry into subsection (7) offence

(8) The Board may certify an offence pursuant to subsection (7) to the appropriate court and that court may thereupon inquire into the offence and, after hearing any witnesses who may be produced against or on behalf of the person charged with the offence and after hearing any statement that may be offered in defence, punish or take steps for the punishment of that person in like manner as if he had been guilty of contempt of the court.

Administration of oath

(9) A member of the Board has power to administer oaths and receive affirmations for the purposes of any of its proceedings. R.S., c. 83, s. 13.

Right to counsel

14 Any party may be represented before the Board by counsel. R.S., c. 83, s. 14.

Rights of party at hearing

15 At a hearing before the Board, any party may call and examine his witnesses, cross-examine opposing witnesses and present his arguments and submissions. R.S., c. 83, s. 15.

Exception to public hearing

16 All hearings shall be open to the public except where

(a) the person whose act or omission caused the injury or death has not been charged with a criminal offence or, if charged, has not been convicted of any criminal offence;

(b) it would not be in the interests of the victim, or of the dependants of the victim, of an alleged sexual offence to hold the hearings in public; or

(c) the Board determines that it is in the interest of the parties or in the public interest not to hold the hearings in public. R.S., c. 83, s. 16.

Order prohibiting publication of evidence

17 (1) The Board may make an order prohibiting the publication of any report or account of the whole or any part of the evidence at a hearing where the Board considers it necessary for one of the reasons mentioned in Section 16, but in making an order pursuant to this subsection the Board shall have regard to the desirability of permitting the public to be informed of the principles and nature of each case.

Offence and penalty

(2) Any person who publishes a report or account of any evidence at a hearing contrary to an order of the Board pursuant to subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and on summary conviction is liable to a fine of not more than two thousand dollars or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year, or to both.

Maximum penalty on corporation

(3) Where a corporation is convicted of an offence pursuant to subsection (2), the maximum penalty that may be imposed upon the corporation is twenty-five thousand dollars and not as provided therein. R.S., c. 83, s. 17.

Interim payments to applicant preceding award

18 Where

(a) the applicant is in actual financial need; and

(b) it appears to the Board that it will probably award compensation to the applicant,

the Board may, in its discretion, order interim payments to the applicant in respect of maintenance and medical expenses and, if compensation is not awarded, the amount so paid is not, in the absence of fraud or misrepresentation, recoverable from the applicant. R.S., c. 83, s. 18.

Written decision

19 (1) The final decision of the Board, including reasons therefor, shall be in writing.

Included in reasons for decision

(2) The reasons for the final decision shall include

(a) any agreed findings of facts;

(b) the findings of fact on the evidence; and

(c) the conclusions of law based on the findings mentioned in clauses (a) and (b).

Service of decision

(3) The Board shall cause to be served on the parties a copy of its final decision, including the reasons therefor. R.S., c. 83, s. 19.

Method of service

20 (1) Any notice or document required to be served pursuant to this Act or the regulations is sufficiently served if delivered personally or sent by registered mail addressed to the person upon whom service is required to be made at the latest address for service appearing on the records of the Board.

Deemed time of service by registered mail

(2) Where any notice or document mentioned in subsection (1) is served by registered mail, the service shall be deemed to be made on the third day after the day of mailing.

Other method of service

(3) Notwithstanding subsections (1) and (2), the Board may order any other method of service of any notice or document mentioned in subsection (1). R.S., c. 83, s. 20.

Effect of prosecution on Board proceedings

21 (1) An order for compensation may be made whether or not any person is prosecuted for or convicted of the offence giving rise to the injury or death but the Board may, on its own initiative or upon the application of the Attorney General, adjourn its proceedings pending the final determination of a prosecution or intended prosecution.

If incapacity to form criminal intent

(2) Notwithstanding that a person for any reason is legally incapable of forming criminal intent, he shall, for the purposes of this Act, be deemed to have intended an act or omission that caused injury or death for which compensation is payable pursuant to this Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 21.

Release of evidence to person entitled

22 The Board shall, upon request, release documents and things put in evidence at a hearing to the lawful owner or the person entitled to possession thereof within a reasonable time after the matter in issue has been finally determined. R.S., c. 83, s. 22.

Variation of order of Board

23 (1) The Board may at any time, on its own initiative or on the application of the victim, any dependant of the victim, the Attorney General or the offender, vary an order made by it in such manner as the Board thinks fit, whether as to terms of the order or by increasing or decreasing the amount ordered to be paid or otherwise.

Factors considered

(2) In proceedings pursuant to subsection (1), the Board shall consider

(a) any new evidence that has become available;

(b) any change of circumstances that has occurred since the making of the order or any variation thereof, as the case may be, or that is likely to occur; and

(c) any other matter the Board considers relevant.

Application of Act where review

(3) In reviewing an application for compensation pursuant to subsection (1), the Board may apply any or all of the provisions of this Act to such review except that it shall not apply Section 8 so as to extend the limitation period set out therein. R.S., c. 83, s. 23.

Costs

24 The Board may, with respect to any hearing or other proceeding pursuant to this Act, make such order as to costs as it thinks fit. R.S., c. 83, s. 24.

Appeal

25 Subject to Section 23, a decision of the Board is final except that an appeal lies to the Appeal Division of the Supreme Court from any decision of the Board on any question of law. R.S., c. 83, s. 25.

Factors considered in grant of compensation

26 (1) In determining whether to make an order for compensation and the amount thereof, the Board shall consider and take into account all such circumstances as it considers relevant to the making of the order and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the Board shall consider and take into account any behaviour of the victim that directly or indirectly contributed to his injury or death.

Failure of victim to co-operate with Board

(2) The Board may decline to make an order for compensation if the victim does not co-operate fully with the Board and, in particular, if he

(a) refuses to submit to a medical examination by a duly qualified medical practitioner appointed by the Board; or

(b) refuses to testify under oath or affirmation at the hearing by the Board.

Failure of victim to report offence

(3) The Board may decline to make an order for compensation if the victim fails to report the offence within a reasonable period of time to, or refuses reasonable co-operation with, a law enforcement agency. R.S., c. 83, s. 26.

Deductions from compensation

27 (1) Subject to subsection (2), in determining the amount of compensation, if any, to be awarded to an applicant, the Board shall deduct

(a) any amount recovered from the person whose act or omission resulted in the injury or death, whether as damages or compensation, pursuant to an action at law or otherwise; and

(b) any benefits received or to be received

Designation of amounts not to be considered

(2) The Governor in Council may, by order, designate certain payments or amounts, or certain classes of payments or amounts, received or to be received by a victim or his dependants that shall not be considered by the Board in determining compensation under this Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 27.

Lump sum or periodic payments

28 The Board may order compensation to be paid in a lump sum or in periodic payments, or both, as the Board thinks fit. R.S., c. 83, s. 28.

Maximum award for single victim

29 (1) The amount awarded by the Board to be paid in respect of the injury or death of one victim shall not exceed

(a) in the case of lump sum payments, thirty thousand dollars; and

(b) in the case of periodic payments, one thousand dollars per month,

and, where both lump sum and periodic payments are awarded, one only but not both may exceed half of the maximum therefor prescribed in clause (a) or (b), as the case may be.

Pro rata distribution of maximum award

(2) When the total amount of the awards that would, but for subsection (1), have been made in respect of the injury or death of one victim exceeds the maximum amount prescribed by subsection (1), such maximum award shall be distributed in proportion to the amounts of the awards that would, but for subsection (1), have been made.

Maximum total award for one occurrence

(3) The total amount awarded by the Board to be paid to all applicants in respect of any one occurrence shall not exceed

(a) in the case of lump sum payments, a total of one hundred thousand dollars; and

(b) in the case of periodic payments, three thousand five hundred dollars per month.

Pro rata distribution of maximum award

(4) Where the total amount of the awards that would, but for subsection (3), have been made in respect of any one occurrence exceeds the maximum amount prescribed by subsection (3), such maximum award shall be distributed in proportion to the amounts of the awards that would, but for subsection (3), have been made.

Deemed one occurrence

(5) For the purposes of this Section, the Board may deem more than one act to be one occurrence where the acts have a common relationship in time and place.

Subsections (1) to (4) do not apply

(6) Subsections (1) to (4) do not apply to amounts awarded in respect of an injury or death incurred in the circumstances referred to in clause (b) or (c) of subsection (1) of Section 7, and such amounts shall not be taken into account in determining maximum awards. R.S., c. 83, s. 29.

Not subject to attachment nor assignable

30 Any compensation or other amount awarded as costs paid or payable pursuant to this Act is not subject to execution, garnishment, attachment, seizure or any other legal process and the right thereto is not assignable. R.S., c. 83, s. 30.

Terms and conditions of order

31 (1) An order for the payment of compensation may be made subject to such terms and conditions as the Board thinks fit

(a) with respect to the payment, disposition, allotment or apportionment of the compensation; or

(b) as to the holding of the compensation or any part thereof in trust for the victim or the dependants, or any of them, whether as a fund for a class or otherwise.

Compensation for expenses payable directly

(2) Any compensation payable for expenses pursuant to Section 9 may, in the discretion of the Board, be paid directly to the person entitled thereto.

Minor or incompetent

(3) If a person entitled to an award pursuant to this Act is under the age of nineteen years, is of unsound mind or in the opinion of the Board is incapable of managing his own affairs, any amount payable to him may be paid on his behalf to his parent, spouse or guardian or to the Public Trustee or may be paid to such other person or applied in such manner as the Board considers in the best interest of such person, and amounts so paid shall be received and administered by the payee for the benefit of the person. R.S., c. 83, s. 31.

Right to civil action for damages

32 (1) Subject to subsections (2), (3) and (4), nothing in this Act affects the right of any person to recover from any other person by civil proceedings damages in respect of the injury or death.

Subrogation of Board

(2) The Board is subrogated to all the rights of the person to whom payment is made pursuant to this Act to recover damages by civil proceedings in respect of the injury or death and may maintain an action in the name of such person against any person against whom such action lies, and any amount recovered by the Board shall be applied to

(a) first, payment of the costs actually incurred in the action and in levying execution; and

(b) second, reimbursement to the Board of the value of the compensation awarded,

and the balance, if any, shall be paid to the person whose rights were subrogated.

Effect of settlement on subrogation

(3) Any settlement or release does not bar the rights of the Board under subsection (2) unless the Board has concurred therein.

Notice of action against offender

(4) An applicant for or a person awarded compensation shall forthwith notify the Board of any action he has brought against the offender who caused the injury or death of the victim. R.S., c. 83, s. 32.

Payment out of Consolidated Fund

33 (1) Compensation ordered to be paid shall be paid out of the Consolidated Fund of the Province.

Payment into Consolidated Fund

(2) Any money to which the Board is entitled pursuant to Section 32 shall be paid into the Consolidated Fund of the Province. R.S., c. 83, s. 33.

Regulations

34 (1) The Governor in Council may make regulations

(a) prescribing rules of practice and procedure in respect of applications to the Board and proceedings of the Board;

(b) requiring the payment of fees in respect of any matter in the jurisdiction of the Board, including witness fees, and prescribing the amounts thereof;

(c) prescribing forms for the purposes of this Act and providing for their use;

(d) defining any word or expression used in this Act but not defined herein;

(e) respecting any matter necessary or advisable to carry out effectively the intent and purpose of this Act.

Amendment of Schedule

(2) The Governor in Council may amend the Schedule by

(a) adding thereto a description of any criminal offence; and

(b) deleting therefrom the description of any criminal offence set out therein. R.S., c. 83, s. 34.

Agreements

35 (1) Subject to the approval of the Governor in Council, the Attorney General, acting on behalf of Her Majesty in right of the Province, may enter into agreements with any minister of the Crown, acting on behalf of Her Majesty in right of Canada, respecting, subject to such terms and conditions as are agreed upon, the payment by the Government of Canada to the Province of such part of the expenditures required for the purposes of this Act as is agreed upon.

Amendment of agreement

(2) Power to enter into any agreement pursuant to subsection (1) includes power, subject to the approval of the Governor in Council, to amend any such agreement from time to time. R.S., c. 83, s. 35.

Regulations Act

36 The exercise by the Governor in Council of the authority set forth in Section 34 shall be regulations within the meaning of the Regulations Act. R.S., c. 83, s. 36.

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