Canada Evidence Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-5)

Act current to 2016-01-25 and last amended on 2015-08-01. Previous Versions

Marginal note:Authentication of electronic documents

 Any person seeking to admit an electronic document as evidence has the burden of proving its authenticity by evidence capable of supporting a finding that the electronic document is that which it is purported to be.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Application of best evidence rule — electronic documents
  •  (1) The best evidence rule in respect of an electronic document is satisfied

    • (a) on proof of the integrity of the electronic documents system by or in which the electronic document was recorded or stored; or

    • (b) if an evidentiary presumption established under section 31.4 applies.

  • Marginal note:Printouts

    (2) Despite subsection (1), in the absence of evidence to the contrary, an electronic document in the form of a printout satisfies the best evidence rule if the printout has been manifestly or consistently acted on, relied on or used as a record of the information recorded or stored in the printout.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Presumption of integrity

 For the purposes of subsection 31.2(1), in the absence of evidence to the contrary, the integrity of an electronic documents system by or in which an electronic document is recorded or stored is proven

  • (a) by evidence capable of supporting a finding that at all material times the computer system or other similar device used by the electronic documents system was operating properly or, if it was not, the fact of its not operating properly did not affect the integrity of the electronic document and there are no other reasonable grounds to doubt the integrity of the electronic documents system;

  • (b) if it is established that the electronic document was recorded or stored by a party who is adverse in interest to the party seeking to introduce it; or

  • (c) if it is established that the electronic document was recorded or stored in the usual and ordinary course of business by a person who is not a party and who did not record or store it under the control of the party seeking to introduce it.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Presumptions regarding secure electronic signatures

 The Governor in Council may make regulations establishing evidentiary presumptions in relation to electronic documents signed with secure electronic signatures, including regulations respecting

  • (a) the association of secure electronic signatures with persons; and

  • (b) the integrity of information contained in electronic documents signed with secure electronic signatures.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Standards may be considered

 For the purpose of determining under any rule of law whether an electronic document is admissible, evidence may be presented in respect of any standard, procedure, usage or practice concerning the manner in which electronic documents are to be recorded or stored, having regard to the type of business, enterprise or endeavour that used, recorded or stored the electronic document and the nature and purpose of the electronic document.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Proof by affidavit
  •  (1) The matters referred to in subsection 31.2(2) and sections 31.3 and 31.5 and in regulations made under section 31.4 may be established by affidavit.

  • Marginal note:Cross-examination

    (2) A party may cross-examine a deponent of an affidavit referred to in subsection (1) that has been introduced in evidence

    • (a) as of right, if the deponent is an adverse party or is under the control of an adverse party; and

    • (b) with leave of the court, in the case of any other deponent.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Application

 Sections 31.1 to 31.4 do not affect any rule of law relating to the admissibility of evidence, except the rules relating to authentication and best evidence.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Definitions

 The definitions in this section apply in sections 31.1 to 31.6.

computer system

système informatique

computer system means a device that, or a group of interconnected or related devices one or more of which,

  • (a) contains computer programs or other data; and

  • (b) pursuant to computer programs, performs logic and control, and may perform any other function. (système informatique)

data

données

data means representations of information or of concepts, in any form. (données)

electronic document

document électronique

electronic document means data that is recorded or stored on any medium in or by a computer system or other similar device and that can be read or perceived by a person or a computer system or other similar device. It includes a display, printout or other output of that data. (document électronique)

electronic documents system

système d’archivage électronique

electronic documents system includes a computer system or other similar device by or in which data is recorded or stored and any procedures related to the recording or storage of electronic documents. (système d’archivage électronique)

secure electronic signature

signature électronique sécurisée

secure electronic signature means a secure electronic signature as defined in subsection 31(1) of the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. (signature électronique sécurisée)

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 56.
Marginal note:Order signed by Secretary of State
  •  (1) An order signed by the Secretary of State of Canada and purporting to be written by command of the Governor General shall be admitted in evidence as the order of the Governor General.

  • Marginal note:Copies published in Canada Gazette

    (2) All copies of official and other notices, advertisements and documents published in the Canada Gazette are admissible in evidence as proof, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, of the originals and of their contents.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-5, s. 32;
  • 2000, c. 5, s. 57.
Marginal note:Proof of handwriting of person certifying
  •  (1) No proof shall be required of the handwriting or official position of any person certifying, in pursuance of this Act, to the truth of any copy of or extract from any proclamation, order, regulation, appointment, book or other document.

  • Marginal note:Printed or written

    (2) Any copy or extract referred to in subsection (1) may be in print or in writing, or partly in print and partly in writing.

  • R.S., c. E-10, s. 33.
Marginal note:Attesting witness
  •  (1) It is not necessary to prove by the attesting witness any instrument to the validity of which attestation is not requisite.

  • Marginal note:Instrument, how proved

    (2) Any instrument referred to in subsection (1) may be proved by admission or otherwise as if there had been no attesting witness thereto.

  • R.S., c. E-10, s. 34.
Marginal note:Impounding of forged instrument

 Where any instrument that has been forged or fraudulently altered is admitted in evidence, the court or the judge or person who admits the instrument may, at the request of any person against whom it is admitted in evidence, direct that the instrument shall be impounded and be kept in the custody of an officer of the court or other proper person for such period and subject to such conditions as to the court, judge or person admitting the instrument seem meet.

  • R.S., c. E-10, s. 35.
Marginal note:Construction

 This Part shall be deemed to be in addition to and not in derogation of any powers of proving documents given by any existing Act or existing at law.

  • R.S., c. E-10, s. 36.
 
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