Osler Updates

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Land rulings a clear message to Ottawa, provinces: It’s time to govern

Thomas Isaac, Partner and practice lead for Osler’s Aboriginal Law Group, is a nationally recognized authority in the area of Aboriginal law. On Monday, July 21, 2014, The Globe and Mail published an online commentary written by Tom regarding two significant decisions by the Supreme Court of Canada on Aboriginal title and treaty rights.  

July 22, 2014

Provincial Jurisdiction Confirmed Regarding Treaty Rights – Supreme Court of Canada’s Keewatin Decision

In Grassy Narrows First Nation v Ontario (Natural Resources), also known as the Keewatin Decision, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) confirmed that provinces have the power to take up treaty lands for resource development projects and other purposes consistent with provincial jurisdiction.

July 14, 2014

Target Benefit Plans in Canada – An Innovation Worth Expanding

Target Benefit Plans in Canada – An Innovation Worth Expanding – C.D. Howe Institute, Commentary No. 411

July 2014

Tsilhqot’in Decision: The Sky Is Not Falling

Despite the significant media attention that the recent Supreme Court of Canada decision in Tsilhqot’in Nation v. British Columbia (2014 SCC 44) has received, it represents a reiteration of established law regarding Aboriginal title that has been developed over decades.  The decision is historic because it is the first time that any court has formally declared that Aboriginal title exists, albeit under an existing legal framework.

June 27, 2014

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Fraud-on-the-Market Doctrine

In its highly anticipated decision in Halliburton Co. v. Erica P. John Fund, Inc. released this week, the U.S. Supreme Court confirmed that plaintiffs in securities class actions could continue to rely on the “fraud-on-the-market” presumption. Where available, the presumption eliminates the need for plaintiffs to demonstrate reliance on an alleged misrepresentation on an individual basis.

June 25, 2014

Appellate Court Recognizes and Protects Litigation Privilege in a Regulatory Investigation

An appellate court recently concluded that litigation privilege may be appropriately claimed by a target of a regulatory investigation. The Court in TransAlta Corporation v Market Surveillance Administrator reaffirmed the importance and protection afforded to litigation privilege claims, recognizing there is the need for both legal advice and the protection of an associated zone of privacy when a party is facing an investigation that could result in a prosecution with serious consequences. 

June 23, 2014

Take Note: Canada’s Notice and Notice Regime Is Coming into Force

In a statement dated June 17, 2014, the Canadian government announced the coming into force of Canada’s new Notice and Notice regime, included as part of The Copyright Modernization Act (which provides for the most recent amendments to Canada’s Copyright Act). The announcement provides that the Notice and Notice regime (i.e.,new sections 41.25, 41.26 and 41.27(3) will come into force six months following publication of the Order in Council (the precise date of which is yet to be determined). 

June 19, 2014

Federal Court Revokes Darlington Nuclear Preparation Licence Based on “Gaps” in Environmental Assessment

In a rare (and over 200-page) decision, the Federal Court of Canada revoked the Licence given to Ontario Power Generation to construct new nuclear generation units at the existing Darlington nuclear facility, and ordered that the environmental assessment under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act be returned to the appropriate panel for further consideration including addressing certain “gaps” in the analysis undertaken in the EA. 

June 18, 2014

Duty to Consult where Government Action Impacts a First Nation’s Economic Interests

In a recent decision concerning a Ministerial decision to allocate timber undercut on the west coast of Vancouver Island, the Court recognized that a duty to consult extends to a situation where the government decision may have a potential adverse effect on a First Nation’s economic interests, as opposed to an Aboriginal right. 

June 16, 2014

Plan Nord: Québec Liberal Government Relaunches the Plan Nord

On June 4, 2014, the first budget (Budget) of the new Liberal government, in power since April 7, 2014, was tabled in the Québec National Assembly. The Budget provides for certain measures to relaunch the Plan Nord, as announced by the Liberals during the latest election campaign. 

June 12, 2014