Justice: Questions and answers for the general public

Les salles d’audience, les salles d’entrevue et les comptoirs de services ont été adaptés de manière à respecter les règles sanitaires en vigueur, notamment par l’ajout de panneaux protecteurs. Du matériel de désinfection est disposé dans les aires communes et à l’entrée des salles. Les salles et le matériel tel que les chaises, les micros et les tables seront également désinfectés régulièrement.

Pour accéder au palais de justice, vous devez d’abord être évalué par un employé ou un agent de sécurité qui vérifiera votre état de santé afin d'établir votre niveau de risque. Il vous interrogera également sur la raison de votre visite afin de limiter le nombre de personnes admises et de s’assurer que la raison de votre visite est valable.

Chaque personne autorisée à entrer dans un palais de justice doit se désinfecter les mains en utilisant la solution nettoyante fournie sur place. Elle doit suivre en tout temps les consignes qui lui sont indiquées, notamment le respect de l’étiquette respiratoire, des mesures d’hygiène et de la distanciation de deux mètres entre les personnes.

L’accès aux salles d’audience est également contrôlé.

Selon votre cas :

  • Pour les procès en matière civile (y compris les petites créances) et en matière pénale (par exemple, pour les infractions au Code de la sécurité routière), un nouvel avis de convocation vous sera acheminé à moins qu’un avis antérieur soit toujours valide.
  • Pour les procès criminels, un nouvel avis de convocation vous sera acheminé. Si vous ne l’avez pas reçu, nous vous invitons à communiquer avec votre avocat si vous êtes représenté, ou directement avec le Centre de communications avec la clientèle au 1 866 536-5140.

Oui. Les différentes cours établiront quels dossiers doivent être traités en priorité. Nous vous invitons à consulter leurs sites Internet pour plus d’information :

The COVID-19 pandemic has ushered in a new reality which the Ministère de la Justice has to contend with, particularly when conducting jury trials.

That is why, in collaboration with the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ), we have implemented the necessary measures to limit the risk of infection. 
Our staff will greet you in the safest conditions possible and will guide you through the selection process. It is also mandatory to wear a face mask or covering when circulating in the courthouse’s common areas. 

If you are considered at risk according to the criteria established by the INSPQ, or if you have COVID-19 symptoms, you can apply for an exemption or for postponement to a later session by explaining your situation in the exemption form you received. To learn more about who is considered at risk, please visit the INSPQ's website This hyperlink will open in a new window..

In any event, if you have COVID-19 symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 shortly before your appearance date, please communicate with the courthouse prior to going.

Useful links:

You must respect the jury summons sent to you. Measures have been taken to ensure your safety.

Justice: Questions and answers (intended for law professionals)

Detainees and Offenders

Since the beginning of the health crisis, the ministère de la Sécurité publique (MSP) has made sure to follow the recommendations of the Institut national de santé publique du Québec and has implemented numerous measures to protect detainees and MSP correctional services staff. For example,

  • a reminder of the health instructions of the Institut national de santé publique du Québec;
  • access to water, soap, and cleaning products in the living areas of detainees and to alcohol-based hand sanitizer in areas where they do not have ready access to water and soap;
  • confinement of newly admitted detainees;
  • segregation of prisoners at risk, symptomatic, or affected by COVID-19;
  • mandatory seclusion of staff who have contracted or are likely to have contracted COVID-19;
  • provide protective equipment to staff whose duties require it and make procedural masks available to correctional officers who come into contact with detainees in the course of their duties;
  • restriction of movement in and out of correctional facilities (suspension of programs, no access to gymnasiums, etc.);
  • restriction of entry to and exit from correctional facilities (offenders serving intermittent sentences, visitors, volunteers, appearances, etc.);
  • provision of a hotline for all detainees and their family members to obtain information on measures taken in correctional facilities to reduce the risk of virus propagation.

No. Only those individuals with COVID-19 or with symptoms of the disease are secluded and confined to their cells in segregation or quarantine areas, as per the directives of the healthcare department of the correctional facility. A person who is symptomatic is placed in a cell alone and is monitored by the said healthcare department.

Since March 26, all inmates admitted to a correctional facility have been quarantined for a period of 14 days before being placed in their respective living areas, as long as they do not show any symptoms.

As of March 14, 2020, all visits to detainees, with the exception of lawyers, are suspended until further notice.

Since the announcement of the suspension of visits, and for each 15-day period thereafter, all inmates are offered $30 to use the telephone system to contact family and friends.

Cell phones are also available for those confined to quarantine areas.

Yes, however, staff at the correctional facility will take several days to process these donations.

No. Meals are being served at the usual frequency and portions have not been reduced in any way. Canteen supplies, subject to availability, remain the same as before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Measures have been implemented to help detainees get through this period. For example, telephone call time is offered to each detainee. Movies, books, and board games are available to them. Chaplains are always on site, and a COVID-19 hotline is available to individual detainees and their family members.

In order to protect the health of detainees and correctional facility staff, the execution of intermittent sentences has been suspended since March 20. Individuals under this type of sentence have been granted a medical discharge with the condition that they remain in their homes.

The MSP is closely monitoring the situation. For the time being, it is prioritizing, with respect to persons serving a continuous sentence, the terms of release provided for in the Act respecting the Québec correctional system, such as temporary absences for medical reasons or for purposes of social reintegration.

In order to allow for appearances by detainees that could not be postponed, MSP correctional services worked with the Commission québécoise des libérations conditionnelles du Québec to expand the use of videoconferencing for hearings, as well as with the Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions, the ministère de la Justice, and defence counsel to make use of videoconferencing, video parlours, and telephone appearances whenever possible.

You must follow the instructions of the Institut national de santé publique du Québec and stay in your home as much as possible. We suggest that you contact the resource and your correctional services worker to inform them of the situation. If you do not have enough time to complete your work within the prescribed period, your correctional services worker will be approached to collaborate in asking the court to extend the deadline.

There are no pandemic-specific financial measures offered by the MSP. The usual resources are available for assistance in applying to the ministère du Travail, de l'Emploi et de la Solidarité sociale for benefits or to initiate job search procedures.

A correctional services worker can also refer  detainees to the appropriate resources, if need be. 

Yes, detainees and their family members (spouse, child, parent, or other family members) can call 1-833-905-0001 to find out what measures are being taken in correctional facilities to reduce the risk of virus propagation.

The hotline is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. However, no confidential information regarding detainees can be provided.