Criminal Law


If you have been contacted by the police to attend at the police station, retain us to provide you with appropriate advice before you attend the police station. Many lawyers advise clients “to not say anything” to the police. This basic advice in no way adequately prepares a client for police investigative techniques or tactics. Make the right choice from the beginning – Bernard Cummins will provide you with appropriate, ethical and responsible advice. It makes all the difference.

Bernard cares about his clients. For the last 18 years, thousands of clients in the Cambridge area have trusted his counsel.

Prepared.             Focused.               Determined.


International Travel to the United States: Do Criminal Convictions matter?

The United States determines admissibility eligibility based upon the nature of the conviction, and the possible maximum sentence that could be imposed by a judge, even if that did not occur in your circumstances. Canadian citizens will be denied entry into the United States for crimes they deem to be of “moral turpitude”. These include convictions for fraud, theft, assault causing bodily harm, all drug offences, and many convictions where lengthy periods in custody are possible, even if not imposed by the sentencing judge.

Many clients have been incorrectly advised that obtaining a pardon will permit them to enter the United States. The U.S. does not recognize Canadian pardons. We have assisted many clients in obtaining waivers for entry into the U.S. The process is lengthy, however, it is not particularly expensive, and is necessary for clients seeking to travel for business or pleasure.

Record Suspension Applications (formerly pardons)

On March 12, 2012, the Conservative government passed The Omnibus Bill (Bill C10), also known as the Safe Streets and Communities Act, which dramatically changed the availability and applicability of pardons in Canada. Now, pardons have been renamed “record suspensions”. As the name implies, a criminal record will be “suspended”, but not extinguished, and can be rescinded in the event a person is convicted of a subsequent criminal offence. Although record suspensions are not recognized by the United States Department of Homeland Security, they are particularly important to obtain employment in Ontario, as many employers require a criminal records check prior to offering employment. We have assisted many clients with the application process for record suspensions. Contact us for a confidential consultation.

Impaired Driving Offences


Impaired driving offences, sometimes known as drunk driving, are legally complex offences that require years of courtroom experience and professional training in order to successfully navigate.

Many defences exist. We carefully review the disclosure to determine if a viable defence exits. If there is no defence, WE TELL YOU. Sometimes, a client needs to get driving again as soon as possible. We will expedite your case so that you qualify for the Back on Track program and breath interlock program in Ontario as soon as possible.

The best advice for clients charged with impaired driving, over .08, care and control, refuse or fail to provide breath samples, is honest advice. We do not believe that a client should spend thousands of dollars in legal fees if there is no probability of success. It is our professional obligation to YOU. The right advice for YOUR circumstances. No false promises, no exaggerated claims. As competent, experienced trial counsel, we achieve better results, for YOU.

What are the consequences of a first conviction for over .08, impaired driving, care and control or refuse breath sample?

  • Minimum fine under the Criminal Code is $1,000.00.
  • Minimum loss of licence is 90 days automatically, followed by an additional 90 days driving prohibition after conviction, provided that a breath interlock device is installed on ignition system for nine months and other preconditions are met.
  • Completion of the “Back on Track” counselling program.
  • Cancellation of insurance coverage by insurer. This requires replacement through a “high risk” insurance carrier, with premiums generally in the range of $5,000/year for a minimum of three years.
  • * Penalties increase substantially for second and subsequent offences.

Highway Traffic Offences

Highway traffic convictions can result in insurers not renewing your insurance policy. This will mean that your insurance rates increase dramatically.

Do not leave highway traffic tickets to people who pretend to have experience. Only a lawyer is specifically trained to interpret case law and understand legislation. We constantly attend professional seminars to keep abreast of changes in legislation.

Benefit not only from our wealth of knowledge and courtroom experience, but also our professional associations with Crown Attorneys, Highway Traffic Prosecutors,other legal professionals and expert re-constructionists.

Experience and knowledge count.

Local charges require local solutions.

Our professional representation of you will make all the difference.


Consult Us For:

  • All criminal offences
  • Health and safety charges
  • Restaurant liquor license
  • Infractions
  • Murder
  • Manslaughter
  • Assault causing bodily harm
  • Theft
  • Fraud
  • 2nd degree murder
  • Assault
  • Aggravated assault
  • Sexual offences
  • Possession of pornography
  • Break and enter
  • Employee fraud
  • Bail hearings
  • Weapon forfeitures
  • Professional discipline hearings
  • Coroner inquests
  • Highway traffic offences
Questions about Criminal, Regulatory and Highway Offences?

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