If you have been convicted in Canada of a crime that you did not commit, Innocence Canada may be able to help.
To inform Innocence Canada of the details of your case, you will need to submit an application. Although Innocence Canada lawyers review all applications, only a few cases proceed to review and, until a case is formally adopted, every review is investigative in nature and does not reflect Innocence Canada’s position with respect to the guilt or innocence of the applicant.
Applicants must be innocent of the crime for which they have been convicted. If you are guilty of the offence you have been convicted of, please do not apply to Innocence Canada and, should you have concerns over other issues regarding your conviction, please contact your lawyer.
Beyond the requirement of innocence, Innocence Canada cases typically involve the following criteria:
- The conviction must have been for a serious crime.
- A substantial majority of Innocence Canada cases involve convictions for murder.
- Convictions for other serious crimes can only be reviewed where resources permit and where there appears to be a clear avenue of new and significant evidence that was not available at trial.
- Every applicant must have appealed to at least the provincial Court of Appeal.
- Except in extremely rare circumstances, Innocence Canada will not consider a case in which the applicant has not attempted to appeal his or her conviction.
To apply to Innocence Canada, please download, complete and return an application form, available below.
Please note that the application contains a waiver setting out the terms of the case review as well as an authorization that permits Innocence Canada to collect information about your case. Both forms must be signed by the applicant and witnessed (by anyone who is not the applicant) before a case review can begin.
To request an application by mail, or for assistance in completing the application, please contact Innocence Canada’s Director of Client Services, Win Wahrer at: 416-504-7500, ext. 227 or toll free 1-800-249-1329.
Letters can be mailed to the following address:
111 Peter Street Suite 408