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Shoplifting is a prevalent issue in Canada, and it’s essential to understand the criminal charges and legal consequences that come with this offence. 

This article aims to provide an informative and educational guide for our Canadian readers, shedding light on the seriousness of shoplifting, its legal ramifications, and the importance of seeking professional help when facing such charges.

Shoplifting in Canada

I. What is Shoplifting?

Shoplifting, also known as theft under the Criminal Code of Canada, refers to the act of taking or attempting to take something from a retail store without paying for it. Shoplifting can take various forms, including:

  • Concealing merchandise on one’s person or in bags.
  • Swapping price tags to pay a lower price.
  • Intentionally damaging goods with the intent not to purchase them.
  • Collaborating with an employee to commit theft.

II. Legal Consequences of Shoplifting in Canada

Shoplifting is not a minor offence in Canada. The legal consequences can be severe, depending on the value of the stolen goods and other circumstances. 

Here are the primary legal consequences of shoplifting:

  • Criminal Charges: Shoplifting is considered a criminal offence in Canada, and those caught may face charges under the Criminal Code. These charges can have a lasting impact on one’s criminal record.

  • Penalties: Penalties for shoplifting can include fines, probation, community service, or even imprisonment. The severity of penalties depends on the value of the stolen goods, prior convictions, and the circumstances of the offence.

  • Criminal Record: A shoplifting conviction can result in a permanent criminal record, which can have significant consequences on future employment, travel opportunities, and personal reputation.

  • Civil Liability: In addition to criminal charges, shoplifters can be held civilly liable for damages, meaning they may have to pay restitution to the retailer for the stolen goods and any related losses.

  • Employment Implications: Having a shoplifting conviction on your record may limit future job opportunities, as many employers conduct background checks. It’s crucial to seek legal counsel to understand your rights and options.

III. Why You Need Professional Legal Help

Facing shoplifting charges can be daunting, and that’s where affordable criminal lawyers in Brampton can make a significant difference. 

Here’s why you should consider seeking professional legal assistance:

  • Legal Expertise: Criminal lawyers in Brampton have the knowledge and experience to navigate the legal system effectively, ensuring that your rights are protected and advocating for the best possible outcome.

  • Reducing Charges: A skilled attorney can work to reduce or dismiss your charges, minimizing the impact on your criminal record.

  • Sentence Mitigation: If you are convicted, a lawyer can help negotiate for reduced penalties, such as fines or community service, instead of imprisonment.

  • Guidance and Support: Legal professionals can provide guidance and support throughout the legal process, ensuring that you make informed decisions about your case.


Shoplifting in Canada is a serious offence with significant legal consequences, potentially affecting your future in profound ways. To protect your rights and ensure the best possible outcome, it’s crucial to seek the assistance of professional criminal lawyers in Brampton.

If you’re facing shoplifting charges or want to learn more about your legal options, don’t hesitate to reach out to our experienced team of lawyers. We are here to provide the support and expertise you need during this challenging time.

Remember, when it comes to shoplifting charges in Canada, the right legal representation can make all the difference in securing a more favourable outcome for your case. Don’t face this legal battle alone; take action now to protect your future.