Can a Person Be Charged For Hitchhiking?

Hitchhiking, Meaning Soliciting Drivers For a Ride and Doing So While Standing or Walking Along the Roadway, Is Unlawful and An Offence Contrary to the Highway Traffic Act. The Fine For Hitchhiking Ranges From $60 to $1,000 and Is Also Subject to a Mandatory Victim Surcharge and Court Cost.

Freed Legal Services says

please drive

carefully. responsibly. prudently. safely. cautiously.


A Helpful Guide For How to Determine the Applicable Penalties For Hitchhiking For a Ride Along a Roadway

Man With Thumb Up Looking Soliciting For a Ride Along Highway A person that is standing or walking along the roadway seeking a driver who will provide a ride is engaging in what is commonly known as, and referred to as,hitchhiking. Within Ontario, among other places, hitchhiking is unlawful as doing so creates a significant danger to the person that is hitchhiking as well as posing a risk to other who are using the roadway whereas a vehicle driver may be distracted by the hitchhiker or stop suddenly to pick up the hitchhiker thereby surprising other drivers and possibly causing an accident.

The Law

The law that forbids a person from hitchhiking along the roadway is prescribed by section 177(1) of the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8.  For those found guilty of violating section 177(1), the details for the penalty upon conviction are prescribed by section 214(1) of the Highway Traffic Act whereas section 177(1) is actually silent, meaning absent, about the penalty details. Interestingly, what is actually defined as the "roadway" often requires careful review of the definition as per section 1 of the Highway Traffic Act. Within section 177(1), section 214(1), and section 1 of the Highway Traffic Act it is specifically stated:

Soliciting rides prohibited

177(1) No person, while on the roadway, shall solicit a ride from the driver of a motor vehicle other than a public passenger conveyance.

General penalty

214 (1) Every person who contravenes this Act or any regulation is guilty of an offence and on conviction, where a penalty for the contravention is not otherwise provided for herein, is liable to a fine of not less than $60 and not more than $1,000.

roadway” means the part of the highway that is improved, designed or ordinarily used for vehicular traffic, but does not include the shoulder, and, where a highway includes two or more separate roadways, the term “roadway” refers to any one roadway separately and not to all of the roadways collectively;

Accordingly, per the general penalty stated within section 214(1) as is shown above, the fine for hitchhiking is in a range from sixty ($60) dollars to one thousand ($1,000) dollars.  Additional penalties will include the statutory victim surcharge plus court cost.

Summary Comment

Hitchhiking presents a great risk of serious harm to the hitchhiker and possible others using the roadway whereas such is both a distraction and also presents as a hazard when a driver suddenly brakes and swerves to pick up a hitchhiker.  Accordingly, the law forbids hitchhiking and imposes a fine of up to one thousand ($1,000) dollars plus victim surcharge and court cost.


Freed Legal Services provides affordable servicesas a Paralegal in:
Get a FREE ½ HOUR CONSULTATION

Need Help? Let's Get Started Today

ATTENTION: Do not send any confidential information through this website form.  Use this website form only for making an introduction.

For more information, fill out the form below to send a direct inquiry to Freed Legal Services

ATTENTION: Confidential details about your case must not be sent through this website.  Use of this website does not establish a legal-representative/client relationship.  Do not include confidential details about your case by email or phone.  Use this website only for an introduction with a Freed Legal Services representative.
Toronto Office

62 Marine Parade Drive, Unit 4
Toronto, Ontario,
M8V 0B7

P: (416) 623-3434
E: info@freedlaw.ca

Niagara Falls Office

3832 Main Street
Niagara Falls, Ontario,
L2G 6B2

P: (800) 716-1897
E: info@freedlaw.ca

Hours of Business:

9:00AM – 6:00PM
9:00AM – 6:00PM
9:00AM – 6:00PM
9:00AM – 6:00PM
9:00AM – 6:00PM
Monday:
Tuesday:
Wednesday:
Thursday:
Friday:

By appointment only.  Please call for details.

Providing Legal Help within these Areas and More:

Among other areas in Ontario, Canada