Government of Canada / Gouvernement du Canada
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Canada Evidence Act

Version of section 4 from 2015-07-23 to 2024-05-28:

Marginal note:Accused and spouse

  •  (1) Every person charged with an offence, and, except as otherwise provided in this section, the wife or husband, as the case may be, of the person so charged, is a competent witness for the defence, whether the person so charged is charged solely or jointly with any other person.

  • Marginal note:Spouse of accused

    (2) No person is incompetent, or uncompellable, to testify for the prosecution by reason only that they are married to the accused.

  • Marginal note:Communications during marriage

    (3) No husband is compellable to disclose any communication made to him by his wife during their marriage, and no wife is compellable to disclose any communication made to her by her husband during their marriage.

  • (4) and (5) [Repealed, 2015, c. 13, s. 52]

  • Marginal note:Failure to testify

    (6) The failure of the person charged, or of the wife or husband of that person, to testify shall not be made the subject of comment by the judge or by counsel for the prosecution.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-5, s. 4
  • R.S., 1985, c. 19 (3rd Supp.), s. 17
  • 2002, c. 1, s. 166
  • 2014, c. 25, s. 34, c. 31, s. 27
  • 2015, c. 13, s. 52

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