Court rules govern practice and procedure in matters brought before a specific court.
The Provincial Court has jurisdiction in almost all criminal matters. The Provincial Court hears criminal matters under a number of federal and provincial enactments, such as the Criminal Code, the Youth Criminal Justice Act, the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, the Firearms Act, the Offence Act, the Youth Justice Act, and the Motor Vehicle Act.
The Provincial Court of British Columbia Criminal Caseflow Management Rules were created to manage youth and adult criminal cases. The rules are supplemented by Practice Directions issued by the Chief Judge. Individuals and practitioners appearing before the court are expected to comply with the Directions.
Preparing for Court provides overviews of Basic Criminal Procedure, Court Etiquette, Trial Preparation and Note-taking as well as Introductory Legal Research and Resources.
The BC Supreme Court is a superior court of criminal jurisdiction, meaning it has exclusive jurisdiction to deal with trials of serious crimes. It also hears all criminal matters that fall outside the jurisdiction of the Provincial Court of BC and it hears summary conviction appeals from the Provincial Court.
The Criminal Rules of the Supreme Court of British Columbia set out the rules of court for criminal matters before the Supreme Court. Supplementary Criminal Practice Directions, Notices, and Guidelines should also be consulted.
The BC Court of Appeal hears appeals from the BC Supreme Court and indictable offence conviction appeals from the Provincial Court of BC. It is the highest court in the province.
The rules of court for criminal matters before the Court of Appeal are found in the British Columbia Court of Appeal Criminal Appeal Rules. The Court of Appeal also issues Criminal Practice Directives which provide guidance in the conduct of an appeal.