Tessmer Law Offices



Welcome to Tessmer Law Offices

When your liberty, livelihood, family or assets are on the line, think of Tessmer Law Offices.  Our philosophy, 'When losing is not an option' really says it all.  We are a small group of highly motivated and skilled lawyers who work with you to get the results you need. Whether the government is trying to take and keep your assets or whether they are trying to put you in jail, we do whatever it takes under our constitution to make sure that doesn't happen. We leave no stone unturned to fight your legal battles. Browse the site to meet the lawyers, hear about some of our battles, and get updates on important legal issues of our time. Or, join the dialogue on Twitter and check out our Facebook page. While no lawyer can guarantee a win in Court a wise person makes sure he has a skilled advocate by his side to ensure the best possible outcome. 


Civil Forfeiture Law

This is the newest weapon in the British Columbia government’s arsenal   to take your assets. Even if you don’t get charged with a crime, the police may seize your money, your valuables, and even your house, if they can prove that it was probably used for a criminal purpose. The Civil Forfeiture Act gives wide powers to the ‘Director’ of Civil Forfeiture to commence lawsuits against your property to lead to a forfeiture.

In a recent case where the police tried to seize our client’s home, we were able to get the case dropped because the police violated our client’s rights in the process of executing a search warrant for a marihuana grow operation. The law of civil forfeiture is evolving and in order to protect your assets, you need someone knowledgeable in this area.

If you have a legal issue you want a Civil Forfeiture lawyer to help with, ASK NOW!


Criminal Law

Criminal defence is our passion and we defend against charges of all kinds.  If you are facing charges for assault, theft, impaired driving, drug-related offences, driving while prohibited, or any other crime, we can help. 

Our criminal defence practice has successfully defended our client’s at all court levels in Canada including the British Columbia Provincial and Supreme Courts, the British Columbia Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Canada. 

We are at the forefront of “cutting edge” law and our criminal defence lawyers keep apprised of new developments in both statute and the common law.   We are constantly researching new laws and even have our own internal library filled with case precedents and authorities that we will rely on when we defend you. If you have a defence, we will find it and we will get you results. 

We also understand that financing can be a concern for many people facing criminal charges. One thing clients often worry about when deciding whether to get a lawyer is the “hidden costs” that other firms may charge. You can put this concern aside when you come to Tessmer Law Offices as our criminal defence lawyers offer “flat-rate billing”. This means that the amount we quote you at the outset is the amount you’ll pay for our services when we resolve your matter. We also offer three highly capable criminal defence lawyers with varying experience; we surely have a lawyer who can suit your financial constraints and satisfy your legal needs. 

To find out more information from one of our criminal defence lawyers, ASK NOW


Rage against the Civil Forfeiture machine

In October, Mr. Armour argued a case before the Supreme Court of BC in Victoria opposing an application by the Director of Civil Forfeiture for an order of detention of his client's vehicle pending the trial for this matter.  The EIPO is a very important stage in the proceedings, because as we all know - "possession is 9/10th of the law".  Thus, one of the reasons the Director is so powerful is because nobody ever fights back - it's easier to 'roll over' and accept 20% value of your seized property than to risk losing the entire amount at Supreme Court and also being on the hook for the Director's costs. 

In this case, earlier in the summer, the police seized a vehicle belonging to Mr. Armour's client based on an IRP impaired driving investigation.  Once that impoundment period expired, the police refused to return the vehicle at all and instead commenced Civil Forfeiture proceedings arguing that the vehicle was an "instrument of unlawful activity" and needed to be forfeited to Her Majesty The Queen.  Mr. Armour argued that the Civil Forfeiture Act is statuorily limited to criminal organizations and enterprises where property is obtained by crime or serious bodily harm to a person is involved.  Here...neither of those things were present.  As such, he argued, the Director was attempting to inch its way beyond the scope of what it could lawfully seize and commence forfeiture proceedings where none should be permitted by law.  In theory, had the Director's position been accepted by the Judge, then it would have opened the door into future cases where the police could easily seize lawfully-owned property on the assumption that it "might" be used illegally in the future.  Most outrageous was the fact that in this case, the owner of the vehicle was not even the person whom the Director had concerns about; rather, it was her husband they were actually concerned about.

One of the reasons the Director is so powerful is because - to date - nearly every decision related to the CFA has been ruled in favour of the Director which has given defence lawyers not much to work with.  Hopefully this case helps other lawyers fight back a bit against an extremely powerful regime.  To that end, the Judge called the Director's case "frivolous" and said "the Director of Civil Forfeiture has taken zealous measures outside the proper bounds of its home statute with the unfortunate effect of depriving a citizen of lawful posession and use of her property."

You can read the judgment here.

Contact Us


Tessmer Law Offices
272 Bernard Avenue,
Kelowna, British Columbia
V1Y 6N4


tel. 250-762-6747
fax. 250-762-3163

email. [email protected]

Follow Us

Copyright 2024 Tessmer Law. All rights reserved. Website Design by Kelowna Web Design Agency Csek Creative.