Disputing a Bylaw Offence Notice

Submitting a Dispute

If you wish to dispute a Bylaw Offence Notice (BON), complete the dispute form and submit it to Bylaw Services within 14 days of receiving the ticket.  The form may be downloaded and submitted by email to bylaw@northcowichan.ca or dropped off at the Municipal Hall located at 7030 Trans-Canada Highway.

Screening Officer Review

A Screening Officer will contact you to discuss your dispute and explain the adjudication process. The Screening Officer will review the BON and cancel it if appropriate. If the BON is not cancelled, will be offered the choice of:

  • Paying the full amount of the fine (not eligible for discounted amount).
  • Entering into a compliance agreement, which establishes terms and conditions for compliance, including time periods for payment of penalties and plans to cease or remedy the bylaw contraventions that gave rise to the BON. As a term of the compliance agreement, the Screening Officer may authorize a reduction of the prescribed penalty by 35%.
  • Requesting a bylaw dispute adjudication hearing.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. I have received a Bylaw Offence Notice (ticket) - what are my options?
You have two options when you receive a ticket:

    • Pay the penalty.
    • Dispute the ticket within 14 days of receiving the BON.

2. How can I pay my BON?
Visit the Bylaw Offence Notice webpage for options on how you can pay your BON.

3. How do I dispute my BON?
Complete the dispute form and submit it to Bylaw Services at bylaw@northcowichan.ca or drop it off in person at the Municipal Hall, within 14 days of receiving the ticket. 

The personal information on this form is collected by the District of North Cowichan for the purposes of bylaw enforcement, under the authority of section 26(b) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. If you have any questions about the collection of information, please contact the Manager of Bylaw and Business Licensing Services, at 7030 Trans-Canada Highway, Duncan, BC V9L 6A1, by email at bylaw@northcowichan.ca or by telephone at 250.746.3108.

By submitting the dispute form, you are authorizing the District of North Cowichan to release your information for the purpose of coordinating a dispute adjudication hearing, if your fine has not been paid, cancelled, or you have not entered into a compliance agreement.

4. What happens when I dispute my BON?
When you dispute your BON, a report of the incident will be forwarded to a Screening Officer. When the Screening Officer has received the report, you will be contacted to present your side and the process will be explained to you. It is at this time that the Screening Officer will seek to resolve the dispute with you.

When the Screening Officer contacts you, they will be seeking to discuss the following:

    • Information with respect to the incident that constituted a BON.
    • The specific bylaw and its provision(s) that were allegedly contravened.
    • The facts on which the contravention allegation is based.
    • The fine for the infraction.

The opportunity to enter into a Compliance Agreement - to establish terms and conditions for compliance that the Screening Officer considers necessary or advisable, including time periods for payment, and a 35% penalty reduction.

In situations where the Screening Officer is unsuccessful in resolving the dispute, a Bylaw Adjudication Hearing may be requested.

5. What is a Bylaw Adjudication Hearing?
A Bylaw Adjudication Hearing is similar to a court hearing that provides an opportunity for individuals to have their disputed BON heard by an independent Adjudicator. The Adjudicator is provided to the Bylaw Adjudication System by the Attorney General’s Office of the Province of BC. Adjudicators only have the authority to consider the offence on the basis of the evidence presented.

The Bylaw Adjudication System is designed so that representation from a lawyer is not necessary, but you may choose to have a lawyer present if you wish. Upon hearing the evidence, the Adjudicator will render a decision as to whether the offence did or did not take place. The Adjudicator is not at liberty to modify the offence or the penalty.

    • If the Adjudicator finds that the contravention did occur, a $25.00 Adjudication fee is added to the penalty, which becomes payable immediately.
    • If the Adjudicator renders a decision that the offence did not take place, the ticket and all associated charges are cancelled.

For more information, please visit the Bylaw Dispute Adjudication webpage.