Profile of an Agent
The selection of agents as federal prosecutors is based on the premise that the PPSC is entitled to the highest quality of legal services and advice consistent with the reasonable demands of economy, efficiency, and effectiveness. Competence, integrity, professionalism, and trust remain the primary considerations in the retention of agents.
Canadian courts expect a great deal from prosecutors, who are subject to ethical, procedural, and constitutional obligations. Traditionally, their role has been regarded as that of
“a representative of justice” rather than that of
“a partisan advocate.” Their functions are imbued with a public trust. All prosecutors are expected to discharge their duties with fairness, objectivity, and integrity. Their role is not to win convictions at any cost but to put before the court all available, relevant, and admissible evidence necessary to enable the court to determine the guilt or innocence of the accused.
Agents must be fiscally responsible, follow PPSC’s fixed file handling practices, and comply fully with administrative provisions, billing guidelines, and fee and disbursement policies.
The PPSC requires private sector lawyers and firms retained as Agents to:
- carry law-practice insurance in the province or territory in which they conduct their practice, in compliance with the requirements of the relevant law society or bar association;
- comply with the federal government's conflict of interest guidelines, which seek to ensure that agreements with the private sector meet the highest ethical standards;
- ensure that each member of the firm acting for the PPSC is a member in good standing of a provincial or territorial bar;
- ensure that each member of the firm acting for the PPSC is in compliance with the Canada Revenue Agency;
- ensure that each member of the firm and all members of their staff who will require access to documents relating to work assigned by the PPSC comply with the requirements pertaining to, and are eligible to obtain a Reliability Status security clearance;
- comply with the requirements outlined in the PPSC Deskbook and T&Cs documents, which outline the relationship between an Agent and the PPSC, its policy obligations and expectations as to case management practices as well as administrative provisions; and,
- comply with technology standards as defined by PPSC.
Agents are remunerated according to a fee tariff which is based on years of experience at the Bar. The current fixed three-tier tariff ranges from $106 to $150 per hour. Articling Students, students, paralegals, and iCase Administrator approved by the PPSC are paid at an hourly rate of $56.
An enhanced fee rate may be granted in situations where the complexity and duration of the case or other exceptional circumstances warrant a higher rate.
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