The Legal Consequences of Assault Convictions

March 23rd, 2023
The Legal Consequences of Assault Convictions

Assault convictions in British Columbia—and the rest of Canada—can be very serious. “Assault,” however, covers a wide range of crimes for which there are a wide-range of sentences upon conviction. In today’s blog we are going to talk briefly about what assault refers to, and the different types of sentences that may be imposed upon conviction. 

What is assault?

Assault crimes have varying levels of severity in Canada ranging from simple “assault” (without intending to minimize the crime) up to murder. The definition of assault is basically applying force to someone else without their consent including attempting to do so and threatening to do so.

If assault is of a sexual nature, then that elevates the crime to sexual assault. There is a long list of combinations and permutations of assault that would be beyond the scope of this article to list entirely. Suffice it to say that there are other factors that play both into the charges and the punishment such as was a weapon used? Was the assault against a child? How serious were the injuries sustained by the victim, and the list goes on.

Assault Conviction Penalties

In the same way that there are many types of assault charges, there are also many types of assault conviction penalties. These include fines, restitution, community service, jail time, and in cases of sexual assault, can result in the convicted party ending up on SOIRA, Canada’s Sex Offender Registry. All by itself, the penalty of being listed on SOIRA can have grave and far-reaching consequences that can affect not just your reputation, but your ability to work and to travel. This list can be difficult or even impossible to remove yourself from.

The severity of the penalties depends on the charges laid, the seriousness of the crime(s), and whether the charges are pursued in civil or criminal court.

For the reasons outlined above, we recommend that you hire a criminal lawyer as soon as possible if you are facing assault charges and do not make any statements to police until you have consulted with your lawyer.

If you are charged with any kind of assault, please contact Gagan Nahal for a free consultation in Vancouver at (604) 527-4769. Mr. Nahal’s law practice focuses on criminal defence law, and he has extensive experience in this area of the law.


Gagan Nahal is a criminal defence lawyer based in Surrey, British Columbia, although he has represented clients across Canada. He works vigorously and tirelessly defending his clients. 

If you have any questions about this article or you would like to talk to Mr. Nahal, please call him directly at (604) 527-4769.