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All materials on the OKT LLP website are for informational purposes only. Accessing this information does not create a lawyer-client relationship. The information does not constitute legal advice or an opinion on any issue.

What if Canada held coast-to-coast environmental review hearings and nobody came?

By Matt McPherson and Michael McClurg The Environmental Assessment Expert Panel that the Government of Canada assembled to independently review Canada’s environmental assessment laws has now begun public hearings. The hearings are being fast-tracked to accommodate the government’s desire to introduce amended federal environment legislation next year.  (See OKT’s guide to the Panel process). Indigenous


LRP II and Indigenous engagement: Until we meet again?

By Liora Zimmerman and Oliver MacLaren The Ontario Minister of Energy announced yesterday that it will be suspending the second phase of the Large Renewable Procurement Process, known as LRP II, effective immediately. This is a (hopefully temporary) setback for First Nations in some areas of Ontario for whom LRP II represented a significant economic


Rethinking legal education – the Anishnaabe Law Camp

OKT is proud to announce the firm’s sponsorship and ongoing support for the ground-breaking annual Anishinaabe Law Camp organized by Osgoode Hall Law School and the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation. In 2014, OKT watched with interest as legal scholars and Anishinaabe traditional knowledge holders organized the first Anishinaabe Law Camp, at Neyaashiinigmiing (the Chippewas of Nawash


Canada Ordered to Stop Discriminating Against First Nations Children, For the Third Time

by Maggie Wente Today, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal released a decision in the ongoing case First Nations Child and Family Caring Society et al v. Canada, in which the Tribunal again orders Canada to stop discriminating against First Nations children in child welfare funding.  This is the third time this year that the Tribunal


Urgent: Funding deadline approaching for Indigenous communities who want to make representations to federal Environmental Assessment Review Expert Panel

Funding is available for Indigenous communities to participate in the Government of Canada’s review of its environmental review processes, but time is running out to apply. The deadline is September 9, 2016 for (arguably the most important) parts of the process, and September 23, 2016, for other parts. If you would like to apply for


What First Nation-Owned Businesses Need to Know About Collecting GST/HST

When does Canadian law require First Nations-owned businesses on reserve to collect GST/HST? When it comes to First Nation-owned businesses, what is involved and required in GST/HST registration and reporting is often misunderstood. Many First Nations who locate their businesses on reserve (incorrectly) believe that their customers do not have to pay GST/HST – whether


OKT Partner Renée Pelletier appointed to Environmental Assessment Expert Panel

OKT’s Managing Partner, Renée Pelletier, has been appointed to the Government of Canada’s Environmental Assessment Review Expert Panel.  The link to the official Government of Canada announcement is found here. The Government of Canada has formed the Expert Panel to engage with Canadians and Indigenous peoples about reforms to the federal environmental assessment process. The


Roger Townshend listed as Aboriginal Law Lawyer of the Year in Toronto

On behalf of OKT, I would like to congratulate one of our founding partners, Roger Townshend, on being selected by the magazine Best Lawyers as the 2017 Toronto Lawyer of the Year in Aboriginal law! Roger takes over from another one of our founding partners, Nancy Kleer, who was selected for the same award last year.


One year since the political accord: where are we now?

On August 24, 2015, the Premier of Ontario and the Ontario Regional Chief signed a “Political Accord” which formalized an agreement to work together on common goals. Members of the Political Confederacy negotiated the final version of the Political Accord which included a recognition of the fact that there were already important bilateral processes underway


Canada announces new “Additions to Reserve” policy

The Ministry of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (“INAC”) has just released a new Policy Directive on Additions to Reserve (“ATR”) and Reserve Creation. The Directive replaces the previous version, last updated in 2001. The update seems to implement a number of changes that could make it easier for First Nations to increase their reserve