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Starting Police School? Here Are 3 Myths About the Law Worth Knowing

2017-01-04 by Mark Harrington

Your police foundations training will teach you about many different aspects of the law

Many law abiding citizens believe they know the law. However, many would be surprised to find out a lot of what they think to be law is actually myth. When people hear the same rule repeated over and over, it can be hard to distinguish reality from false information. The longer this goes on, the more people believe the mythical law and come to accept it as fact. This is why so many fall victim to believing in laws that might not even exist.

As an aspiring police officer, it will be your job to uphold the law in the line of duty. While your training will help make sure that you are well-versed in which laws are fact and which are fiction, you might sometimes encounter citizens who might not have the same in-depth training.

Here are three common myths you might encounter throughout your career.

Myth #1: U-Turns Are Illegal and Can be Punished by Professionals with Police Foundations Training

The U-turn is a hot topic of debate amongst drivers. Many believe pulling such a maneuver violates the law. However, U-turns are completely legal unless there are signs stating otherwise. After police foundations training you won’t be ticketing drivers for pulling a U-turn as long as they are performed safely. This mean the intersection must not be within 30 metres of a railroad crossing, and oncoming drivers must be able to clearly see from 150 meters away.

Myth #2: A Signed Contract Is Always Enforceable Once You Become a Police Officer

Contract law is intricate and can be confusing, which is why there are many myths about what constitutes a binding contract. After you become a police officer you may notice that in some cases, a judge may choose not to honour a contract signed by both parties. If important conditions are not met, it can unravel the contract. For example, in contract law, parties must have the “capacity” to participate in a contract. This means they are of sound mind, age, and ability to understand what they are signing. If a judge believes one party’s capacity and judgement was hindered, the judge could refuse to uphold the contract. This also applies to contracts signed under duress, pressure, or as a result of threats.

Myth #3: Driving Over the Legal Limit is the Same as Impaired Driving

Many do not realize that being charged for having a blood alcohol level above the legal limit is not the same charge as driving impaired. In Canada, the maximum legal blood alcohol content is 80 milligrams in 100 millilitres of blood (0.08). This is oftentimes referred to as “over 80”. For some drivers, operating a vehicle with this much alcohol in their system won’t hinder their function, but for many it could render them completely useless at the wheel. This is why impaired driving is an additional and separate charge. If someone is over the legal limit but driving normally, they will be charged for driving over the legal limit, but not for impaired driving. On the other hand, someone can be charged with impaired driving because of erratic driving behaviour while being within the legal alcohol limit.

Driving while over the legal alcohol limit is different than driving impaired

Driving while over the legal alcohol limit is different than driving impaired

Are you interested in enrolling in police foundations training?

Contact an advisor at the National Academy of Health and Business to get started!

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