Strategy and Support for Indigenous Peoples​

Our legal team assists clients in developing and implementing strategies for issues involving the Crown, industry, commercial interests, and other Indigenous peoples. This may include drafting or reviewing letters, negotiating for funding, and developing and implementing battle plans.

We help clients navigate and strategically position themselves in the Crown's processes, pushing not just for meaningful consultation and substantive accommodations, but free, prior and informed consent as required by the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. We work closely with clients to ensure that they are well positioned should matters not work out as planned and require review and consideration by the courts.

We also have a significant amount of experience assisting Indigenous peoples in resolving and addressing sometimes challenging and seemingly intractable situations involving their neighbours. Whether as a result of long-standing disputes or complications caused by the Crown in the BC Treaty Process or otherwise, our legal team works closely with clients to design and implement effective legal and political strategies and solutions. We provide the expertise required to handle contentious boundary issues, develop meaningful and effective shared jurisdiction agreements, and, when situations cannot be 'solved’, provide legal advice regarding litigation and other available options.

Litigation

We are experienced litigators and have appeared at all levels of court in British Columbia, within the Federal Court, and at the Supreme Court of Canada.

We know that while court declarations involving Aboriginal rights, title, and interests are important and can be useful in many ways, the Crown should also be required to provide financial compensation for historical failures to live up to its promises and behave honourably. We work closely with expert economists and others to put dollar figures to past losses, presenting strong and persuasive arguments and cases at court and in Canada’s Specific Claims process.

We also know that litigation can be time-consuming and costly. We litigate only when it is the best option, within budgetary constraints, and at our clients' direction. We work closely with clients to ensure litigation is economically viable and sustainable. We work hard to ensure that all our legal work remains within clients' financial means.

Assistance to Indigenous Governments

Our legal team functions as trusted legal advisors for reserve-based Councils and traditional Indigenous governments and their senior and mid-level staff. We know the challenges they face with daily administration, balancing many pressing tasks, projects and issues dealing with reserve lands, community issues, and rights and title concerns.

We are here to assist and provide support in whatever ways we can. Sometimes all it takes is a quick telephone consult. Sometimes we assist in drafting letters, documents or agreements, or help in negotiations and providing clients with materials for informed decision-making. Our legal team combines modern public-sector management tools and, when appropriate and directed, Indigenous legal principles as taught to us by our clients.

We also regularly assist clients in development, review, implementation, enforcement, and interpretation of policies and laws including those regarding land use, cultural heritage preservation, education, housing, election codes, personnel, family wellness, and more. We also know that there are many excellent policies out there. We don‘t try to reinvent the wheel. We work with you to improve it. We also know that sometimes 'fixing a problem' doesn't always require drafting and developing a new rule or policy. Sometimes what's required is staff or community education and improving communication. We can help with that, too.

Balancing Environmental Concerns, Culture and Economic Development​

We are experienced negotiators and draftspersons. We like working alongside our clients as part of a team bringing our skills together with yours to negotiate, draft and conclude agreements with industry, government, municipalities, and sometimes even other Indigenous peoples. We strive to ensure that such agreements reflect, incorporate and meaningfully implement our clients’ concerns for culturally relevant environmental stewardship and their desire for long-term and sustainable economic development, job creation, and participation in local and regional economies.

Let us be part of your trusted team working on:

  • Impact Management Benefit Agreements
  • Environmental Monitoring Agreements
  • Rights and Title Agreements
  • Revenue Sharing Agreements with Crown and Industry
  • Economic Community Development Agreements
  • Forest, resources and utility agreements
  • Other agreements with industry, commercial interests and the Crown

We also know when and how to use litigation to increase pressure points in negotiations, as well as when to advise clients NOT to enter into bad agreements. We are here to protect your legal interests.

Huberman Law Group | Suite 1620 - 1075 W Georgia Street | Vancouver | V6E 3C9 | 604-685-1229

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