CASE LAW - Potestio v Superintendent of Motor Vehicles

BC Courts Coat of ArmsFrank Potestio added four hazardous moving violations and one fail to wear seatbelt violation to his driving record between August 29, 2009 to May 9, 2011. He was sent a warning letter on June 19, 2011. Mr. Potestio committed two further driving offences on February 2, 2012 and was sent a letter placing him on probation for six months effective March 8, 2012. On January 16, 2013, Mr. Potestio committed a further offence of speeding. On March 5, 2013, the Superintendent sent Mr. Potestio a notice of prohibition for a period of three months.

This case details a judicial review of the prohibition on the following grounds:

1.     The Superintendent failed to meet the standard of procedural fairness by failing to give adequate notice of the process and undermined Mr. Potestio’s ability to meet the case against him;

2.     The Superintendent improperly exercised his discretion by failing to consider all relevant factors; and

3.     The length of the prohibition is unreasonable in all of the circumstances.

Mr. Potestio was unsuccessful in having the prohibition cancelled.


Read the Reasons for Judgment - Potestio v Superintendent of Motor Vehicles


Wow, he really "showed them

Wow, he really "showed them at the Supreme Court"

I like how the Judge points out: "Everyone is presumed to know the law. The Superintendent is not obligated to point out statutory provisions that Mr. Potestio is presumed to be aware of or has access to."

That is the key point here.

From reading this judgement, I am forming a vision of a driver who does not understand the "driving is a privilege, not a right" mantra, and furthermore the driver seems to believe The Supreme Court to be a place of voodoo magic and enchanted fairies.

This driver has failed to defend their actions on per-case basis, thinking that The Supreme Court will side with their rather unprepared and misguided case. It further goes to highlight that thinking that if tickets were given unfairly (in defendant's own perception) they will be discounted when it comes to the Supreme Court ruling.

It may have been sobering and "unfair" for the defendant, but saving the gripe "all the way to The Supreme Court" will net weak results, unless th "gripe" is substantiated. Had this driver been more prudent and addressed each of their offences at appropriate times, in the appropriate court, and made documented strides for self-improvement, this case would not be necessary for The Supreme Court to review.

"Everyone is presumed to know the law." - best line of these Reasons for Judgement

Case Law. Everybody must know the law.

Everybody must know the law sounds great.

But you can know the BC law on U-turns, and still get a ticket almost anywhere. Any municipality can have its own U-turn law, and who knows what others. How are you supposed to know the law in every municipality? In Victoria we have 13 (?), and researching all their traffic laws could take a lot of time, and you can be in 5 or 6 of them in a half-hour journey.

I suggest that you could have a perfect score on the drivers' exam, be able to prove it, and still have no defence against a local ticket.

Case Law

Everyone is presumed to know the law.

BC driverss' test has a rule for Uturns. Any municipality can make its own rules for U-turns. How does the driver who passed the BC test know the rules for each municipality?

Everyone is presumed to know

Everyone is presumed to know the law

It's a double edged sword, the base of the "double think" and the McDaddy of all the hypocrisies.

On one side we have "The Citizens" on the other "The Courts", in-between we have the lawyers that ensure that the "knowledge" of the law is present/preserved.

This conundrum is in-place "for no better solution".
As the real solution to the tomes and filing cabinets worth of legislature, descending upon the common folk all the way from King Henry the Nth is a complete rewrite... However nobody wants to do it for free, and nobody wants to pay to do it with-out counter-consideration. Oh the moral hazard...

As far as the U-Turns go, even DriveSmartBC concludes in the article on u-turns that it is probably a better idea to go around the block...


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