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Home > Provincial Court > Youth Court

Youth Court

Canada’s laws apply to everyone, including young people. However, young people are treated differently than adults when they commit a crime.

When a young person between the ages of 12 and 17 years is charged with committing a criminal offence, he or she is subject to the Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA).

The YCJA emphasizes the principles of:

  • timely intervention;
  • meaningful consequences;
  • repairing harm done
  • involvement of family and community; and
  • respect for victims

Provincial Court judges sit as Youth Justice Court judges in every city and circuit point in the province.

Youth Sentences

A young person who pleads guilty or is found guilty after a trial could receive one or a more of the following penalties:

  • a reprimand from the judge,
  • a restitution payment to the victim,
  • community service,
  • probation with conditions, such as:
    • reporting regularly to a probation officer,
    • having a daily curfew,
    • living at a place designated by a probation officer, and
    • taking counselling and treatment as directed by a probation officer.

The Youth Court Judge also has the power to sentence a youth to a significant period of custody and supervision.