Jones v. Fraser

Supreme Court of Canada – [1886] 13 S.C.R. 342

Quebec Family lawSeigniorial lawSuccession

Summary

The Court considered a customary marriage, but did not decide on it. The 1869 decision in Johnstone v. Connolly remained the reference.

Issue

Was the marriage between Alexander Fraser and Angelique Meadows valid?

Was Alexander Fraser’s will revoke at Marguerite Jones’ death?


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R. v. Côté

Supreme Court of Canada – [1996] 3 S.C.R. 139

Quebec Aboriginal rightsFiduciary dutySeigniorial law

Summary

This case was delivered on the same day as Adams. It confirms that it is not necessary to prove the existence of an aboriginal title in order to demonstrate the existence of valid aboriginal rights.

The Court tries to standardize its aboriginal rights doctrine across Canada by refusing to impose different recognition rules according to a French or British colonial past.

As in Adams, the Court asks government’s representatives to use discretionary ministerial powers in a clear and framed way in order to avoid any infringement of aboriginal rights.

Issue

Can the accused claim an aboriginal or treaty right protected by the Constitution Act, 1982 allowing them to fish on their Quebec territory, formerly part of a French colony? If so, does the provincial regulation infringe on that right?


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R. v. Adams

Supreme Court of Canada – [1996] 3 S.C.R. 101

Quebec Aboriginal rightsAboriginal titleSeigniorial law

Summary

This case was delivered on the same day as Côté. The Court found that aboriginal rights could exist independently from the existence of an exclusive aboriginal title.

Issue

Can we consider land claims as a type of Aboriginal rights claims or are Aboriginal rights rooted in claims to the land?


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Corinthe et al. v. Seminary of St. Sulpice

Judicial Committee of the Privy Council – [1912] A.C. 872

Quebec Fiduciary dutyLands reserved for IndiansPropertySeigniorial law

Summary

The Mohawk tried to claim property of the Seigneury of the Lake of Two Mountains, although it was rejected by the Court on the basis of a law of Lower Canada.

The Court encouraged the Mohawk to claim the benefits granted to Indians in the Seigneury by the Canadian government and seek aid.

What they received was not satisfactory, which gave rise to the Oka Crisis in 1990.

Issue

Between the Mohawks and the Sulpicians, who holds the title to ownership of the Seigneury of the Lake of Two Mountains?


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