If you are charged with a criminal offence, you must determine whether you have a right of election.
An election allows you to choose whether to have a jury or a judge render a verdict.
An election also allows you to request a preliminary inquiry, where a provincial court judge assesses whether there is sufficient evidence to require you to stand trial.
If you have an election available, you must choose among the following procedural options:
1)   A trial in the Provincial Court of Nova Scotia before a judge. (A judge of the Provincial Court of Nova Scotia will render a verdict and, if necessary, choose a punishment);
2)   A trial in the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia before a judge. (A judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia will render a verdict and, if necessary, choose a punishment);
3)   A trial in the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia before a judge sitting with a jury. (A jury will render a verdict and, if necessary, a judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia will choose a punishment);
4)   A preliminary inquiry before a judge of the Provincial Court of Nova Scotia, to be followed by a trial, if necessary, before a judge in the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia. (A judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia will render a verdict and, if necessary, choose a punishment); and
5)   A preliminary inquiry before a judge of the Provincial Court of Nova Scotia, to be followed by a trial, if necessary, before a judge sitting with a jury in the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia. (A jury will render a verdict and, if necessary, a judge of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia will choose a punishment).
Defence counsel provides tactical guidance tailored to a client’s particular case to allow for an informed decision with respect to the right of election.

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