Deferred prosecution agreements consultation: Expanding Canada's toolkit to address corporate wrongdoing


This consultation closed on November 17, 2017 (11:59 pm Pacific time). Submissions were accepted until December 8, 2017 (11:59 pm Pacific time).

Purpose of this consultation

This consultation was an opportunity to consider the possibility of introducing a Canadian deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) regime as an additional tool for prosecutors, to be used in appropriate circumstances, to address corporate crime. Under a DPA, criminal prosecution is suspended on the accused agreeing to fulfill certain requirements including admitting to facts that would support a conviction, paying a significant financial penalty and cooperating with authorities, on completion of which, charges will be withdrawn.

DPAs are intended to ensure that corporate criminal conduct is subject to effective, proportionate and dissuasive penalties and to assist in meeting other objectives, including increasing detection and improving compliance and corporate culture. At the same time, a DPA regime may also help to mitigate unintended consequences associated with a criminal conviction for blameless employees, customers, pensioners, suppliers and investors. Additionally, in some cases, a criminal conviction could lead to job losses and wider negative implications to the economy.

Consulting stakeholders

The Government of Canada sought feedback from Canadians and all interested parties, including, but not limited to:

  • industry associations
  • current and potential suppliers to the Government of Canada
  • professional organizations
  • civil society organizations
  • non-governmental organizations
  • justice sector stakeholders
  • provinces and territories

How participation was solicited

A discussion guide was prepared for interested parties to review and comment on. The Government of Canada sought stakeholder views to inform considerations and options for a possible Canadian DPA regime.

To participate in the consultation, interested parties were encouraged to review the deferred prosecution agreements stream discussion guide and to provide feedback through the online form, by email or by mail.


Protection of privacy is important. The personal information on this consultation was collected on a voluntary basis. All personal identifiers were anonymized.

What we heard

A summary report of what was heard during the public consultation period is available.

Contact us

Government of Canada
Portage III, Tower A 10A1
11 Laurier St
Gatineau QC  K1A 9S5
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