The October 1997 resolution is:
Resolved that parents should be responsible in the civil Courts for damages caused by the criminal actions of their children.
The legislature of Manitoba has recently enacted this type of legislation. The Progressive Conservative Caucus of Manitoba home page states:
Justice Minister Rosemary Vodrey has introduced parental responsibility legislation designed to make parents liable for the deliberate destruction or damage of property by their children.
The proposed legislation puts the onus on parents to be responsible for the actions of their children,and we are hoping it will encourage parents to pay more attention to their children's activities. It would provide victims of property crimes easier access to Small Claims Court to sue parents or guardians for damages of up to $5,000.
Parents who show they have made reasonable efforts to supervise their child and prevent the damage or loss could ask the court to consider their efforts as mitigating circumstances. Payments for awarded damages may also be staggered.
The proposed act would not apply to children who are wards of Child and Family Services
1. Interview an insurance company representative to find out if and how their company recovers damages from young persons who have committed serious acts of mischief such as vandalism to schools.
2. Interview a Youth Court Judge. When judges impose disposition on young persons for vandalism and theft do they sometimes order the young person to pay back the victim by way of restitution or compensation?
3. Interview a lawyer who practices Youth Court law. Can a lawyer obtain a lesser sentence from his or her client if the young person offers to make restitution? How can that be done?
Copyright 1997, Stephen R. Biss, Permission to copy and reference is given so long as this line is included.
Stephen R. Biss, Barrister & Solicitor
470 Hensall Circle, Suite 303
905-273-3322 or 1-877-273-3322
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