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In Canada, the law applies to everyone, including:
Canadian laws recognize and protect basic rights and freedoms, such as liberty and equality.
Law can be divided into public and private law.
Public laws set the rules for the relationship between a person and society and for the roles of different levels of government. This includes:
Private or civil law deals with the relationships between people. Civil laws set the rules for:
Courts in Canada help people resolve disputes fairly and within the law. Courts:
Most people settle their differences outside of court (for example, through mediation or arbitration).
If you need help in a Canadian court, it is a good idea to hire a lawyer. There are services that can help you find a lawyer such as:
Depending on your income, you may be able to get a lawyer for free (this is called “legal aid”). Each province and territory has a legal aid society. You can also ask an immigrant-serving organization in your city or town for help hiring a lawyer.
The police in Canada keep people safe and enforce the law. There are different types of police, including:
You should call the police if you:
The number for your local police is in the front pages of the telephone book. If you need to call the police in an emergency, dial 911.
If the police question or arrest you:
Under Canadian law, you are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
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