Civil Procedure Indigenous Peoples

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Saskatchewan Court of Appeal: No Surface Activity Means No Duty to Consult First Nations

In its recent decision in Buffalo River Dene Nation v. Saskatchewan (Energy and Resources), the Court of Appeal for Saskatchewan held that the government was not required to consult the Buffalo River Dene Nation (BRDN) before...more

Court Upholds First Nations’ Right to Bring Claims Based on Interference with Unproven Aboriginal Rights and Title

In its recent decision in Saik’uz First Nation and Stellat’en First Nation v. Rio Tinto Alcan Inc., the Court of Appeal for British Columbia (BCCA) confirmed that First Nations may bring actions against private parties in...more

Duty to Consult Not Triggered for Exploration Dispositions: Saskatchewan Court of Appeal

The grant of exploration dispositions for oil sands located beneath treaty lands did not trigger the Crown’s duty to consult, the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal held recently in Buffalo River Dene Nation v Ministry of Energy...more

5th Circuit Vacates Arbitration Award Conducted By Wrong Arbitrator Under Wrong Rules

Let’s say your arbitration agreement calls for arbitration administered by JAMS under JAMS rules, but the arbitrator is independent and applies AAA rules, over one party’s objection.  A new decision from the Fifth Circuit...more

Aboriginal Heritage Update: Supreme Court Clarifies Meaning Of 'Sacred Site' In Western Australia

In Robinson v Fielding [2015] WASC 108 the Supreme Court of Western Australia determined that the Aboriginal Cultural Material Committee, the body charged with evaluating the importance of places and objects for the purposes...more

North Dakota Requests to Intervene in Lawsuit Challenging Federal Fracking Regulations

On Wednesday, April 1, the state of North Dakota filed a motion to intervene in Wyoming’s lawsuit challenging the Bureau of Land Management’s (“BLM”) federal hydraulic fracturing regulations. (Wyoming v. U.S. Dept. of...more

Gaming Legal News: Volume 8, Number 5: North Fork Tribe Sues State For Compact In Latest Chapter Of Gaming Saga

By the summer of 2014, it appeared that the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians of California had finally made it over the last hurdle to begin construction of a Class III casino with 2,000 slot machines and 40 gaming tables...more

BC Court of Appeal Overturns Ruling that BC Government Liable to Logging Company for Failure to Consult

In Moulton Contracting Ltd. v British Columbia, 2015 BCCA 89, the BC Court of Appeal recently overturned the trial judge’s decision (reported at 2013 BCSC 2348, and summarized in an earlier update here) which had awarded...more

BC Supreme Court to Consider Cumulative Impacts of Resource Development on Treaty Rights

On March 3, 2015, Blueberry River First Nation (“BRFN”) sued the Province of BC seeking to break new ground by considering the cumulative impacts of resource development on BRFN’s traditional territory and treaty rights....more

Provincial Licence Doesn’t Promise Adequate Consultation with First Nations

In its recent decision in Moulton Contracting Ltd. v. British Columbia, the British Columbia Court of Appeal (Court) held that the Province of British Columbia (Province) can contractually exclude liability for losses...more

Independent Producers Lead Legal Challenge Against BLM’s Hydraulic Fracturing Rule

After a regulatory review process lasting more than three years, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued today a final rule purporting to govern hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands. Given BLM’s failure to...more

Californian court puts tribal online bingo website on ice

A Native American tribe’s attempt to launch an internet bingo website has faced setbacks following a recent court order temporarily restraining the site’s operation. In its decision, the Court made a number of important...more

FTC Announces Settlement with Online Payday Lenders

The Federal Trade Commission recently announced a settlement with two online payday lenders to resolve charges that they violated the FTC Act, the Truth in Lending Act (TILA), and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA). The...more

U.S. Supreme Court Update - February 2015

Court Considers Constitutionality of Maryland's Personal Income Tax - On 11/12/14, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the constitutionality of Maryland's personal income tax in Comptroller of the Treasury...more

The US Department of Justice Seeks to Intervene in the Washington Redskins’ Trademark Suit to Defend the Constitutionality of the...

The Washington Redskins professional football team will soon not only be battling Native Americans over the registrability of the REDSKINS trademark, but will also have to cross swords with the US Government. Last week, the...more

Gaming Legal News: Volume 7, Number 12: Department Of Justice Files Suit Against Santa Ysabel Tribe’s "Desert Rose Bingo" Site

On December 3, United States Department of Justice attorneys filed a complaint in federal court seeking to prevent the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel, a federally recognized Indian tribe near San Diego, from continuing to...more

Employment Income not Substantively Connected to a Reserve is Taxable

In Baldwin et al v the Queen, 2014 TCC 284, the Tax Court of Canada had an opportunity to consider section 87 of the Indian Act and when employment income is “situated on a reserve” for tax purposes....more

Tribes Should Beware of Dissent in High Court Ruling, Lawyers Say

Native American tribes shouldn’t celebrate too heartily after a victory at the U.S. Supreme Court by the Bay Mills Indian Community, Oklahoma lawyers said. Tribal lawyers Michael McBride III with Crowe & Dunlevy and...more

Virginia Supreme Court Opinions Affecting Local Government Law: October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween! The Virginia Supreme Court issued opinions on Halloween this year. A complete coincidence, but I do hope that nothing in this term’s opinions has scares you! This term resulted in two cases related to...more

Federal Court Limits Tribe’s, Secretary’s Options When States Balk at Gaming Compact

A federal district court in New Mexico has issued a decision finding that the U.S. Department of the Interior’s regulations permitting the Secretary of the Interior to adopt Class III gaming procedures for a tribe lacking a...more

Second Federal Circuit Court Refuses To Enforce Arbitration By South Dakota Tribe

Using a different analysis, but reaching the same result as a recent decision from the Seventh Circuit, the Eleventh Circuit agreed that a defendant could not compel arbitration of consumer claims before the Cheyenne River...more

Seventh Circuit Uses Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(5) to Reopen 23-Year Old Judgment

Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 60(b)(5) allows a party to move for relief from a final judgment on the ground that “it prospectively is no longer equitable.” Motions under Rule 60(b)(5) must be made “within a reasonable...more

Eleventh Circuit Refuses To Compel Arbitration In Dispute Between Loan Servicer and Borrower

On October 2, the Eleventh Circuit affirmed a district court’s decision refusing to compel arbitration sought by a servicer in a dispute with a borrower over the terms of a loan agreement. Inetianbor v. Cashcall, Inc. No....more

Tribe’s Gamble That Casino Land Transfer Approval Not Subject to CEQA Pays Off

Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians v. Brown, C074506 (9/24/2014) - In a recent Third District Court of Appeal published opinion, the court in Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians v. Edmund G. Brown, Jr. (3rd....more

Seventh Circuit Finds Tribal Arbitration Is Unreasonable and Unconscionable

In a victory for advocates who worry that the odds are impossibly stacked against consumers in some arbitral fora, the Seventh Circuit found that a class of borrowers did not have to proceed with arbitration conducted by the...more

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