If you receive an absolute discharge, it is the least severe sentence you can get as an adult offender. Although you are found guilty, there is no conviction registered, and you are not required to follow any conditions such as probation. Your case is concluded on that day, and you do not need to check in with a probation officer or attend court afterward.
The absolute discharge will remain on your criminal record for one year from the date of discharge, and no pardon application is necessary to have it removed.
When an offender receives a conditional discharge, they are found guilty of a crime, but no conviction is recorded. However, unlike an absolute discharge, there are specific conditions that the offender must comply with. These conditions are outlined in a probation order.
If you received a conditional discharge after July 24, 1992, it will stay on your criminal record for three years from the date of sentencing. After this period, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police will seal your record.
For those who received a conditional discharge before July 24, 1992, you may request the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to seal your record by submitting a written request. If you notice that your record still includes a conditional discharge that you received before this date, you can request to have your record sealed for free. To do this, print and complete the Requesting to Seal Absolute and/or Conditional Discharge form, and send it to the following address:
Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Ensure that your request includes the following information:
- Your full name, including any aliases or maiden name
- Your date of birth
- Your complete return mailing address
- Your phone number, including the area code
- Details of your offense(s), including the charges laid, sentence received, and date of sentence (also referred to as the date of disposition).