McDiarmid Lumber Ltd. v. God’s Lake First Nation

Supreme Court of Canada – [2006] 2 S.C.R. 846

Manitoba FundingIndian ActSeizure

Summary

The Court gives a strict meaning to the exemptions from seizure and garnishment contained in the Indian Act. The funds of a Comprehensive Funding Arrangement, by which the federal finances the Band, are not exempted.

Issue

Are the funds from a CFA between an Indian band and the federal government deemed situated on a reserve, thus exempting them from seizure under sections 89 and 90 of the Indian Act?


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Nowegijick v. The Queen

Supreme Court of Canada – [1983] 1 S.C.R. 29

Ontario Indian ActTaxation

Summary

Wages are exempt from taxation when the employer is located on reserve. The Supreme Court calls for a generous interpretation of the tax exemption of the Indian Act in favour of the Indians.

Issue

Is income personal property?


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Natural Parents v. Superintendent of Child Welfare and Al.

Supreme Court of Canada – [1976] 2 S.C.R. 751

British Columbia Family lawIndian ActJurisdiction over IndiansStatus

Summary

The Supreme Court found that there a provincial adoption act can apply to aboriginal people, in this case because it created no inconsistency. The child can keep its status even though he is adopted by two non-Natives.

Issue

Was section 10 of the Adoption Act, a provincial statute, incorporated into the Indian Act under section 88 of the same Act?


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R. v. George

Supreme Court of Canada – [1966] S.C.R. 267

Ontario Aboriginal rightsIndian ActTreaties

Summary

The Supreme Court refused to interpret the Indian Act as recognizing the paramountcy of treaties over federal legislation – only the provincial legislation must respect the treaties between the Crown and the Indians. This case is no longer applicable, with the constitutional recognition of treaty rights in 1982.

Issue

Does the Treaty of 1827 subtracted Chippewa Indians from the application of the Migratory Birds Convention Act?


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The Queen v. Devereux

Supreme Court of Canada – [1965] S.C.R. 567

Ontario Indian ActLands reserved for Indians

Summary

The Supreme Court decides that a non-Indian is not entitled in this case to stay in possession of reserve land. It is determined to maintain reserves intact for Indians.

Issue

Was Devereux entitled to receive any proceeds from a potential sale of the farm lands he occupied and if so, as an unpaid vendor, was he allowed to remain in possession until the closing of the transaction?


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Osoyoos Indian Band v. Oliver (Town)

Supreme Court of Canada – [2001] 3 S.C.R. 746

British Columbia Indian ActLands reserved for IndiansTaxation

Summary

This decision confirms that Band Councils have the power to adopt property tax by-laws on expropriated reserve land, unless the Crown has stated in a clear and plain way its intention of extinguishing the aboriginal title.

Issue

Can an Indian band assess and impose a property tax on expropriated land located within the limits of its reserve?


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Ermineskin Indian Band and Nation v. Canada

Supreme Court of Canada – [2009] 1 S.C.R. 222

Alberta Fiduciary dutyIndian ActTreaties

Summary

The fiduciary obligation of the Crown is not breached because it paid interest on Indian moneys instead of investing them in a diversified portfolio. The fiduciary obligation of the Crown requires the use of discretion in the best interests of the bands; however this does not necessitate investment.

Issue

Does the fiduciary obligation of the Crown necessitate the investment of royalties received on behalf of the Samson and Ermineskin Indian bands? If not, does its chosen method of calculation and payment of interest constitute a breach of the fiduciary duty?


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Dubé v. Canada

Supreme Court of Canada – [2011] 2 S.C.R. 764

Quebec Indian ActTaxation

Summary

This case was delivered on the same day as Bastien. It determines the location of immaterial personal property relative to a reserve. The tax exemption applies to all personal property of an Indian situated on any reserve, and not one reserve in particular.

Issue

Is interest earned on term deposits considered to be “personal property of an Indian situated on a reserve” to the effect that it is exempt from taxation?


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Bastien Estate v. Canada

Supreme Court of Canada – [2011] 2 S.C.R. 710

Quebec Indian ActTaxation

Summary

This case was delivered on the same day as Dubé. It determines the location of immaterial personal property relative to a reserve. If the location is determined to be on the reserve, the interest income generated from the personal property is also located on the reserve and is exempt from taxation.

Issue

Is the interest income earned by Bastien’s term deposits at the the Caisse populaire Desjardins du Village Huron (Wendake) considered to be “personal property of an Indian situated on a reserve” to the effect that it is exempt from taxation?


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McIvor v. Canada (Registrar of Indian and Northern Affairs)

Court of Appeal for British Columbia – 2009 BCCA 153

British Columbia DiscriminationIndian ActStatus

Summary

This case put an end to some discrimination between men and women in the application of the Indian Act.

Before, an Indian woman who married a non-Indian man lost her status, while an Indian man who married a non-Indian woman gave his wife the status. The Court confirms that corrections brought to this situation in 1985 by Parliament were not sufficient in putting an end to such inequality between men and women.

Issue

Do the provisions of section 6 of the Indian Act violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms because of discrimination based on sex and marital status, and can Grismer’s children be entitled to Indian status even if their paternal grandfather and mother are non-Indian?


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