Court Martial Rules of Practice

These rules have been developed by a committee which consists of representatives of the Office of the Chief Military Judge, the Director of Military Prosecutions, the Director of Defence Counsel Services and the National Military Law Section of the Canadian Bar Association and with the assistance from the Directorate of Law/Military Justice, Plans, Policy and Research of the Office of the Judge Advocate General.

They provide guidance to parties and set out generally approved procedures.

Table of contents

Purpose

1. These rules are promulgated by the Chief Military Judge. They exist to simplify and clarify procedures. They provide guidance to parties and set out generally approved procedures which encourage consistency and enhance the fairness and efficiency of courts martial and related procedures.

Definitions

2. Party includes:

2.1 the prosecutor which means the Director of Military Prosecutions or designate appointed pursuant to section 165.15 of the National Defence Act;

2.2 the accused which means the accused personally or defence counsel acting on behalf of the accused including counsel appointed by the Director of Defence Counsel Services for that purpose;

2.3 the representative of the Canadian Forces which means counsel appointed by the Director of Military Prosecutions to represent the interests of the Canadian Forces at a hearing to determine whether a person is to be retained in pre-trial custody or a person appointed for the same purpose by the custody review officer pursuant to section 159 of the National Defence Act;

2.4 other party which means any other person granted standing by a military judge in a proceeding or legal counsel for that person.

3. Proceeding means all proceedings under the Code of Service Discipline presided over by a military judge.

General structure notices

4. A notice should be in writing on good quality white or off-white paper measuring 21.5 cm by 28 cm (8.5 in. by 11 in.) and include the style of cause, a brief description of the facts and law to be relied upon, the proposed date, time, location and method of hearing, any request for video conference facilities, and the estimated length of the hearing.

5. A notice should be signed by the party making the application, a copy provided to the other parties and then filed with the Court Martial Administrator who will give a copy to the military judge assigned to preside at the Court Martial.

6. Legible facsimile or electronic copies to a maximum of 20 pages will be accepted for filing. The original copy of a notice must be filed if the notice and attachments exceed 20 pages.

7. The address for service of the Court Martial Administrator is:

Mailing address

Office of the Chief Military Judge
National Defence Headquarters
Ottawa, ON K1A 0K2

By courier

Office of the Chief Military Judge
Asticou Centre, Block 1900
241 de la Cité-des-Jeunes Blvd.
Gatineau (Hull), QC J8Y 6L2

Fax number

(819) 997-6321

Filing additional material

8. Additional material which has been provided to the other parties may be filed with the Court Martial Administrator until the commencement of the hearings.

Notification of hearing

9. The Court Martial Administrator will advise the parties in writing of the date, time and place
of any hearing.

Pre-trial conference  

10. The military judge assigned to preside at a court martial will usually hold a pre-trial conference by telephone with the court reporter, the prosecutor and defence counsel acting on behalf of the accused normally at least three working days before the scheduled commencement of the court martial, to assist in effective trial management.

10.1 The prosecutor or defence counsel may also request pre-trial conferences at any time after a judge has been assigned to preside at a court martial if they believe this would assist in the fair and expeditious resolution of issues.

Exhibits

11. Unless a military judge rules otherwise, a party will only submit unprotected and unclassified documents as exhibits in any proceedings.

Preliminary proceedings application – QR&O 112.03

12. An application may be commenced at any time after a military judge has been assigned to preside and a Court Martial has been convened.

13. An application for the hearing of a preliminary proceeding pursuant to article 112.03 of Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces, except one included in paragraph 187(b) of the National Defence Act, is initiated by a party providing notice in writing to the Court Martial Administrator who will forward it to the military judge assigned to preside at the Court Martial.

14. The requirements for reasonable notice for preliminary applications are set out in article 112.04 of Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces.

15. Notice should be given at least three working days before the date requested for the hearing of the application.Footnote 1

16. At a minimum notice should indicate the requested time, date and place of the hearing; the nature of the relief sought; whether counsel wishes to appear by videoconferencing; the grounds for the application; the evidence to be submitted; the law to be relied upon; and an estimate of how long the hearing will take.

17. An application may be withdrawn at any time prior to the commencement of the hearing by the party initiating the application, by providing a notice of withdrawal in the same manner as the notice of application was provided.

18. Judges will be gowned and counsel will be gowned or in DEU 3 for these applications.

19. A sample notice of application for hearing of a preliminary proceeding may be found attached as Form 1 to these rules and a sample notice of withdrawal as Form 2.

Notification of change of counsel

20. Where a party has changed counsel or different counsel has been assigned by the Director of Military Prosecutions or the Director of Defence Counsel Services and that change will not result in a request for rescheduling of any proceeding such change may be notified by the counsel who is withdrawing from representation or the counsel who is commencing representation by providing notice in writing to the Court Martial Administrator. A sample Notice of Change of Counsel may be found attached as Form 3 to these rules.

Form 1 – Application for hearing of a preliminary proceeding

QR&O articles 112.03 and 112.04

[TYPE OF COURT MARTIAL] of [NAME AND PARTICULARS OF ACCUSED PERSON]Footnote 2   

Between:

[APPLICANT]

and

[RESPONDENT]

Notice of application

The [APPLICANT] will make an application pursuant to article 112.03 of Queen’s Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces before the military judge assigned to the court martial of [NAME OF ACCUSED] on [DAY, MONTH, YEAR] at [HOUR] or as soon after that time as the application can be heard, at [PLACE, TOWN/CITY, PROVINCE]Footnote 3.

The application is for:

  1. An order [NATURE OF RELIEF SOUGHT]
  2. Such further and other relief as the military judge deems just.

Proposed method of hearing:

Videoconference connections with [LOCATIONS]Footnote 4  will be required.

The grounds for this application are:

[LIST THE GROUNDS IN SEQUENCE... 

1...

2...

3…]

The following evidence will be submitted during the hearing of this application:

[LIST THE EVIDENCE (list of affidavits, documents, number of witnesses etc.) IN SEQUENCE... 

1...

2...

3…]

The following law will be relied upon during the hearing of this application: (law may be attachedFootnote 5)

[LIST THE CASE LAW IN SEQUENCE. THIS MAY BE SUPPLIED AS ATTACHEMENTS.

1...

2...

3…]

Estimated time to complete the hearing:

[HOURS]

Date:

Signature of [COUNSEL OR PARTY]

 

To:

And to: 

Form 2 – Withdrawal of application for preliminary proceeding application

QR&O articles 112.03 and 112.04

[TYPE OF COURT MARTIAL] of [NAME AND PARTICULARS OF ACCUSED PERSON]Footnote 6  

Between:

[APPLICANT]

and

[RESPONDENT]

Notice of withdrawal of application

[APPLICANT] withdraws [her/his] application for a hearing of a preliminary proceeding pursuant to article 112.03 of Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces seeking [NATURE OF RELIEF SOUGHT] dated [DATE ON APPLICATION] [and scheduled to be heard at DAY, MONTH, YEAR at HOUR at PLACE, TOWN/CITY, PROVINCE]Footnote 6 in relation to the court martial of [NAME AND PARTICULARS OF ACCUSED PERSON].

Date:

Signature:

 

To:

And to: 

Form 3 – Notification of change of counsel

[TYPE OF COURT MARTIAL] of [NAME AND PARTICULARS OF ACCUSED PERSON]Footnote 2 

Between:

[APPLICANT]

and

[RESPONDENT] 

Notice of change of counsel 

[NAME OF PARTY] has been represented by [NAME OF COUNSEL] for the [TYPE OF COURT MARTIAL] of [NAME AND PARTICULARS OF ACCUSED PERSON] which is scheduled to commence on [DATE, TIME] at [PLACE]Footnote 7. Effective this date [NAME OF PARTY] has changed counsel and is now being represented by [NAME OF COUNSEL]. Address for service of counsel is:

Address:

Telephone number(s):

Fax number:

E-mail:

Date:

Signature:

 

To:

And to:

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