Bylaw Adjudication Process

The District of Squamish has a  bylaw fine dispute system that allows for the majority of bylaw fines to be disputed through an independent adjudication system at the local level rather than through the B.C. Provincial Court system. The Bylaw Noticing and Adjudication Process aligns the District’s dispute process with successful best practices in neighbouring municipalities North Vancouver and Whistler, among others.

How it works

Bylaw Offence Notices are tickets issued by Bylaw Officers, Animal Control Officers, Building Inspectors, Fire Inspectors or Fire Chief, RCMP Officers, Conservation Officers and other designated District staff and external agencies. They carry a maximum fine of $500. If disputed, they are adjudicated locally by an adjudicator appointed by the Provincial Ministry of Justice. Other enforcement tools such as Municipal Ticket Information and Long Form Charges involve appearances in BC Provincial court and carry higher penalties.

Disputes are reviewed by a District of Squamish Screening Officer before being referred to an independent adjudicator, and can be facilitated by telephone, in writing or in person. The adjudicator is a professional person with no affiliation to the District, who can resolve disputes in an unbiased manner. 

Reasons for disputing a ticket

If you received a Bylaw Offence Notice and feel there is good reason why you should not have received one, you can dispute it. Bylaw Offence Notices are not dismissed for reasons, such as: 

  • You never received a ticket for this violation in the past.
  • You were unaware of the bylaw offence and regulation.
  • No one else received a ticket for this violation.

How to dispute your ticket

Fill in the dispute form found on the reverse side of the Bylaw Offence Notice and submit it to The District of Squamish within 14 days. You may also complete an online dispute form.  If you wish to mail in a dispute form, please ensure that mailing time is accounted for.

Please note that if the Bylaw Offence Notice was issued to a vehicle, only the Registered Owner of that vehicle may submit a dispute form.

 

What happens when you dispute your ticket

  1. A Screening Officer will review your ticket.
    A Screening Officer will receive your dispute request and review the details of your dispute. The Screening Officer will review the validity of the ticket and ensure accuracy, and based on ticket screening policy, they will either confirm or dismiss the ticket. The Screening Officer is not the adjudicator.

  2. An Adjudication Hearing is scheduled.
    Once the Screening Officer has validated the ticket and you decide to proceed to adjudication, you will be contacted to set the date of the adjudication hearing. You can be heard in person, by phone or in writing. Please note that this process can take upwards of 3 months.

  3. The Adjudicator makes a decision.
    An independent adjudicator will determine if the alleged offence occurred or not. If the adjudicator determines that the alleged offence occurred, you are required to pay the full amount of the ticket, plus an additional $25.00 adjudication fee. Alternatively, if the adjudicator determines that a violation did not occur, you are not required to pay the fine or the adjudication fee.

Questions?

View our Frequently Asked Questions.

If you still have questions about the adjudication process, please contact one of our Screening Officers:

Office Hours: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Closed weekends and statutory holidays.