The Province’s “new approach to litigation” seeks to transform the government’s relationship with Indigenous peoples by prioritizing alternative dispute resolution and negotiated settlement over adversarial, courtroom litigation that presents challenges to achieving reconciliation.
As a law firm that works with individuals and organizations from various backgrounds and cultures, often with reduced political agency, Ratcliff champions equality, diversity, and inclusion. Each day, we are fortunate to represent First Nations with female leadership, businesses with female founders, and families with women at their heart.
Landmark decision opens door to private law remedies for First Nations: A case summary of Thomas and Saik’uz First Nation v Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.
The BC Supreme Court ruled that Rio Tinto Alcan is interfering with Aboriginal fishing rights and causing harm to fish in the Nechako watershed. A team of Ratcliff lawyers worked in collaboration with the Sai’kuz and Stellat’en First Nations to advance the claim and achieve this significant step forward in Aboriginal Law in Canada.
Brent Lehmann provides an overview of legal matters to be considered in connection with a for-market development of First Nation reserve lands. For-market development of reserve lands involves many complex legal matters, the number and complexity of which may vary significantly between developments, depending on a wide range of variables.
Once a treaty has been negotiated, there are numerous activities that must be completed in order to “close” and then “implement” the treaty. Brent Lehmann provides insights on activities required of a first nation relating to the closing and implementation of their treaty.
Development of Aboriginal lands: Successes, risks and environmental concerns respecting contaminated sites
This paper provides an overview of the most common land management regimes that govern development and environmental management on First Nations lands in B.C., discusses the successes and challenges First Nations face with respect to the current policy based regime that applies to contaminated sites on most Indian reserves in B.C. and proposes strategies for moving forward as the options for development and protection of the environment on First Nations lands expand.
Band councils owe fiduciary duties to their bands and to band members. These are distinct duties and while they are generally compatible they can, in some circumstances, conflict. Although the relationship between these duties has not received much attention from courts or academics, it is of great practical importance for band councils.
Commercial fisheries: Should commercial fishing rights be included in modern treaties – pros, cons and alternatives
Given the cultural and economic importance of commercial fishing to BC First Nations, and in particular coastal First Nations, the answer to this question is obviously “yes”. However, this answer must be qualified somewhat: “Yes, provided the inclusion of commercial fisheries in the treaty meets the cultural and economic needs of the respective First Nation”.
Ready when you are
Our lawyers offer a broad range of experience and expertise, with a client-first philosophy to help with whatever you need.
Ready when you are
Our lawyers offer a broad range of experience and expertise, with a client-first philosophy to help you achieve your goals.