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Indigenous Law

It’s key to have a trusted legal team who are respectful of and thoroughly versed in the issues relating to First Nation, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations in Canada. This includes duty to consult, traditional knowledge, hunting and fishing rights, by-law prosecution, economic and trust development, administration, land claims, constitutional issues, financing and governance.

We have one of Canada’s largest and most experienced Indigenous law practices. As a collaborative, multidisciplinary firm, we stay abreast of developments in Indigenous law and offer a range of services to Indigenous communities, governments, government agencies and private entities. This includes:

  • corporate
  • commercial
  • administrative
  • labour
  • general litigation

We have extensive experience with issues related to First Nation communities and organizations. This includes:

  • real estate
  • electricity generation and transmission developments
  • corporate
  • commercial
  • economic development

Our team includes active members of various Indigenous communities and institutions, including practising members of the Indigenous Bar Association and the National Indigenous Trust Officers’ Association. Members also hold directorial positions for both the Northwest Territories and Nunavut Chamber of Mines and the Tungasuvvingat Inuit Board. They also act on the board of directors for the Akitsiraq Law Society.

We act for:

  • First Nations
  • band councils
  • boards
  • institutions
  • not-for-profit corporations
  • economic development corporations
  • provincial, territorial and federal governments relative to their relationship with First Nation communities

Our lawyers have well-established relationships and a reputation for excellence at Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), the Ontario Ministry of Indigenous Affairs, and various other provincial and territorial ministries for Indigenous affairs and relations. We offer government experience and close access for national organizations working with provincial and federal Crown entities.

We are frequently called upon to give legal advice to clients with interests in the northern and remote regions of Canada and have extensive experience with Northern Land Claims Agreements.

Senior lawyers on our team have been consulted by policy makers in government for advice on general legal strategy and policy regarding the recognition and implementation of the special rights of Indigenous peoples. We regularly publish an Indigenous law e-newsletter which reports on cases, policy developments and guidelines.

Experience

  • The federal government of Canada on the adequacy of consultations Kinder Morgan conducted with First Nations in relation to the Trans Mountain Pipeline.
  • HD Mining International in settling Impact Benefit Agreements related to the Murray River Coal Mine.
  • Two British Columbia First Nations in setting up trusts for minor members of the respective Nations.
  • A British Columbia First Nation in setting up a trust to receive a claim settlement for the long-term benefit of the Nation.
  • An Alberta First Nation in setting up a trust to receive its capital funds held by Canada, and for the long-term investment and benefit of the Nation.
  • A Northwest Territories First Nation in documenting and assisting in the settlement of a trust to receive existing and future payments from land claims, treaty land entitlement and negotiations, and agreements.

Testimonials

Key Contacts

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