Mining

Overview

In response to market demands and shifting priorities, the mining industry continues to evolve, both in Canada and internationally. Mining companies that want to keep pace with ongoing change – or better yet, lead the charge – must ensure they understand the intricacies of the multiple aspects of mining development, as well as the associated implications for their bottom line.

Accessing and using capital effectively remains a priority. To expand existing operations or take advantage of new opportunities, it’s critical for mining companies to have a thorough understanding of the financing options available and the most efficacious ways of structuring them.

On another front, engaging with community and Aboriginal stakeholders and addressing ever-changing environmental and regulatory concerns are vital components of mining exploration and development, and must be approached with acumen, insight and skill.

The Mining Group at Osler has the depth of experience and breadth of knowledge to advise domestic and international mining companies on these issues and any other matters they face through every phase of the business cycle – from initial exploration to the establishment of large-scale operations. Our lawyers have acted for mining companies of all sizes, specialties and stages of development, and can offer the legal expertise required to support and guide clients so they can achieve their operational and strategic business objectives efficiently and cost-effectively.

 

 

Digging deeper to meet client needs

Top mining companies from around the world regularly seek out the counsel and advice of Osler practitioners to help them overcome challenges, resolve their issues and meet their business needs – from corporate finance to regulatory matters to labour relations. Osler lawyers have acted as lead counsel on a number of substantial mining M&A transactions, making them well-positioned to advise on the various facets of such deals. In addition, they can share the specialized insight they have gleaned through hostile bid defence mandates that have resulted in some of the most accretive value results.

When accessing capital, clients need to know the most appropriate course of action to take – from private financings through IPO to the most substantial follow-on financing transactions – and this will change depending on the situation. Osler’s team regularly provides direction in corporate financings, such as

  • financing activities in equity and debt markets globally
  • structuring financing plans and processes
  • leading multi-jurisdictional financing teams on their behalf
  • commercial arrangements, including royalty and exploration & development agreements
  • securities law and stock exchange compliance and reporting

The regulatory regime governing the industry is complex. Osler’s Mining Group can help clients navigate the evolving landscape and ensure that they understand and are complying with the applicable requirements, including those related to mining disclosure (National Instrument 43-101), mineral and surface rights, and environmental standards. Our lawyers also have recognized expertise in Aboriginal law and can advise on the obligation to consult with First Nations affected by mining exploration and the need to respect treaty rights.

In addition to the regulatory hurdles that must be considered when establishing new mining projects, companies often face challenges related to the lack of infrastructure and the shortage of skilled labour. Osler’s team can lend its infrastructure and construction experience to those projects and our employment lawyers can help companies address any labour relations issues that arise.

Osler practitioners also provide mining companies with guidance on financing projects as well as advice respecting taxation issues and the optimal way of structuring their operations.

Finally, when companies run into issues related to exploration and development that they cannot resolve on their own, they can turn to Osler’s dispute resolution and litigation experts for direction and guidance.

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Related Expertise

James R. Brown

Partner, Corporate
Toronto

Alan Hutchison

Partner, Corporate
Vancouver
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Members of Osler’s Mining Group have consistently ranked as the leading legal advisors in Canada and among the top legal advisors globally:

  • Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2016-2018, recognized in the area of Energy & Natural Resources: Mining
    • "Clients believe that the firm's "understanding of balancing business needs with legal rights enhances its ability to provide support."
    • "Whether it's a live deal or not, they are extremely responsive, helpful, and their advice is right on the money. They're always willing to be a sounding board on potential issues, and very proactive in highlighting changes to legislation that might impact our transactions." 
    • "They have a great culture and client-centric approach. The lawyers have great technical ability coupled with a good sense of judgement of how legal advice needs to marry up with underlying business objectives. They collaborate internally and externally very well."
  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, 2017, Toronto, Ontario, recognized Osler’s Mining Group in the area of Mining. In addition, for the past nine years, Osler has also been recognized by The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as one of the “most frequently recommended” Toronto firms among the Mergers and Acquisitions practice.
  • The Legal 500, 2017, recognized in the area of Energy: Mining.
  • Several Osler lawyers are named “Leading Canadian Lawyers in Global Mining” in the Lexpert Special Edition on Mining
  • Osler is ranked for Energy & Natural Resources: Mining law in Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Business Lawyers. Additionally, for over a decade, Osler has consistently been given the highest possible ranking (Tier 1) in the guide for Corporate/M&A.
  • The Best Lawyers in Canada ranks Osler as the #1 firm in the Ontario and Ottawa markets in Mergers and Acquisitions, by total number of ranked lawyers.