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Osgoode's Certificate in Fundamentals of Indigenous Peoples and Canadian Law was created to help you understand this complex and vitally important body of law. It is a deep dive into the knowledge and content needed to be able to work more effectively when dealing with these complex legal issues.

A truly outstanding faculty of practicing lawyers, academics and historians drawn from across the country will concentrate on the core aspects of Indigenous Peoples and the law, focusing not just on the law itself, but also those practical considerations that are key to understanding the rapidly changing legal environment.

The aim of the program is to give you a practical understanding of s.35 rights, the constitutional and legislative framework, reserve lands and developments on reserve, treaty interpretation, modern treaties and consultation and accommodation. The certificate wraps up with an interactive panel discussion on consultation and the way forward.

Throughout the program there will be ample opportunity for questions, discussion and debate.

Topics include:

  • The historic narrative and constitutional framework
  • An overview of the case law and key legal concepts from the last 40 years
  • Understanding historic treaties – the context, perspectives and contemporary realities
  • The Indian Act: key issues for practitioners and policy makers
  • Section 35 – understanding its purpose, framework and emerging issues
  • Tsilhqot’in and its implications for Canada, the provinces and Indigenous Peoples
  • Understanding modern day treaties using case studies and a Canada-wide comparative analysis, including First Nation, Inuit and Métis perspectives
  • The duty to consult and accommodate – its origins, recent case law developments and current trends
  • Addressing overlapping territories, private lands, submerged land and waterways
  • Consultation approaches and policies across Canada, including current and developing practices in resource development, impact benefit agreements, participation agreements, cooperation agreements and revenue sharing agreements and policies
  • The Crown, Proponent and Indigenous perspectives on the duty to consult and accommodate

Day 1: February 28
The Foundations

Day 2: March 7
The Historic Treaties, Treaty Rights and the Indian Act

Day 3: April 4
The Aboriginal Rights Framework in s.35

Day 4: April 20
The Modern Day Treaties

Day 5: April 25
The Duty to Consult and Accommodate


Program Directors

  • Sandra A. Gogal, Miller Thomson LLP, Toronto
  • Jason T. Madden, Pape Salter Teillet LLP, Toronto

Advisory Board

  • Keith B. Bergner, Lawson Lundell LLP, Vancouver
  • Christopher Devlin, DGW Law Corporation, Victoria
  • Katherine Hensel, Hensel Barristers, Toronto
  • Peter W. Hutchins, Hutchins Legal Inc., Montréal
  • Thomas Isaac, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP, Vancouver
  • Robert Janes, JFK Law Corporation, Victoria
  • Peter R. Lemmond, Counsel, Ministry of the Attorney General, Crown Law Office – Civil
  • Naiomi W. Metallic, Burchells LLP, Halifax


  • Jim R. Aldridge, Aldridge + Rosling
  • Merle C. Alexander, Miller Titerle + Company, Vancouver
  • Keith B. Bergner, Lawson Lundell LLP, Vancouver
  • Sarah Clarke, Clarke Child & Family Law
  • Michael Coyle, Associate Professor and Assistant Dean, Graduate Studies, Faculty of Law, Western University
  • Signa A. Daum Shanks, Assistant Professor & Director, Indigenous Outreach, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
  • Karen Drake, Associate Professor, Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
  • Mary Eberts, The Law Office of Mary Eberts, Toronto
  • Sonia Eggerman, MLT Aikins LLP
  • Nuri G. Frame, Pape Salter Teillet LLP, Toronto
  • John Gailus, Devlin Gailus Watson, Victoria
  • Larry Innes, Olthuis, Kleer, Townshend LLP, Yellowknife
  • Thomas Isaac, Cassels Brock & Blackwell LLP, Vancouver
  • Robert Janes, JFK Law Corporation, Victoria
  • Gwynneth C. D. Jones, Independent Historian, Vancouver
  • Nancy Kleer, Olthuis, Kleer, Townshend LLP, Toronto
  • David de Launay, Deputy Minister, Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines
  • Andrew Lokan, Paliare Roland Rosenberg Rothstein LLP, Toronto
  • Allan MacDonald, Director General, Implementation Branch, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
  • Sara Mainville, Olthuis, Kleer, Townshend LLP, Toronto
  • Bruce McIvor, First Peoples Law
  • Drew Mildon, Woodward & Company
  • Robert J. Potts, Blaney McMurtry LLP, Toronto
  • Justin Safayeni, Stockwoods LLP Barristers, Toronto
  • Paul Seaman, Gowling WLG (Canada) LLP, Vancouver
  • S. Ronald Stevenson, Senior General Counsel, Department of Justice
  • Jean Teillet, Pape Salter Teillet LLP, Vancouver
  • Maggie Wente, Olthuis, Kleer, Townshend LLP, Toronto
  • Cynthia Westaway, Westaway Law Group



Fees include attendance, program materials, continental breakfast, lunch and refreshments for each of the 5 days of the program. The price does not include accommodations. Please inquire about group discounts and financial assistance. Fees paid by individuals are eligible for a tuition tax credit. Dress is business casual.

Program Changes

We will make every effort to present the certificate program as advertised, but it may be necessary to change the dates, location, speakers or content with little or no notice. In the event of program cancellation, York University and Osgoode Hall Law School’s liability is limited to reimbursement of paid fees.

Certificate of Program Completion

You will receive a certificate upon completion of The Osgoode Certificate in Fundamentals of Indigenous Peoples and Canadian Law. Participants must attend all program modules and pass a take-home assessment to receive a certificate.

Substitutions, Cancellations and Refunds

Substitution of registrants is permitted at any time. If you are unable to find a substitute, a full refund is available if a cancellation request is received in writing 21 days prior to the program date. If a cancellation request is made with less than 21 days notice, a $150 administration fee will apply. No other refund is available.


Have questions? Read our FAQs.

Program Details

Questions on program registration?
Please contact the Registration Team at osgoodepd@osgoode.yorku.ca

Questions on the program content?
Please contact the Program Lawyer:
Alison Hurst at ahurst@osgoode.yorku.ca

Program Details

Date & Time

February 28, March 7, April 4, 20 & 25, 2018
In Person or Webcast


Osgoode Professional Development Centre,
1 Dundas St. W., 26th Floor Toronto, ON

Fee per Delegate

$3,595 plus HST

Registration for this program is now closed

Eligible CPD Credit Hours


Who Should Attend

  • Lawyers practicing in the areas of Indigenous Peoples and the law/Aboriginal law, natural resources, environmental and Constitutional law
  • In-House Counsel, particularly those working in the energy, resource and infrastructure development sectors
  • Indigenous leaders, councillors and advisors
  • Government lawyers/officials – federal, provincial and municipal sectors
  • Negotiators and mediators for industry, government and Indigenous communities

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Hotels & Parking

If you require accommodations in downtown Toronto, OsgoodePD has arranged Corporate Rates with several hotels within walking distance of our downtown conference centre.

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