Aboriginal Peoples and the Law

Course Number
LAW 3310
Course Description

The TRC Final Report called for significant actions to change the justice system’s relationship with Indigenous people. These calls to action extended to law societies, lawyers, law schools, and all levels of government, many of whom are responding seriously. How do Indigenous and non-indigenous lawyers practice law and work with Indigenous clients in the age of reconciliation? Is our current case law and legislation compatible with justice and reconciliation for Indigenous peoples? How did we get to where we are today? This seminar is a survey course on legal issues that particularly impact Indigenous peoples in Canada. It focuses on issues that will be relevant and useful to lawyers in a variety of practice areas, through the lens of reconciliation. These issues are presented and discussed in a manner intended to also deepen the knowledge base of those with a particular interest in Indigenous legal issues, justice and reconciliation. Topics will include land rights and jurisdiction, governance, criminal justice, and child welfare. All students are encouraged to think critically about some of the challenging legal, philosophical, practical and human issues that arise in these areas.

Teaching Method

**Please note: students are not permitted to record (audio or video) class without instructor’s prior written approval.**

Seminar course comprised of written work (research paper), positive contributions during class discussions, presentation of news stories related to course material.


Class Participation – 15%
Class Presentation – 20%
Self-Evaluation Report – 5%
Final Written Work – 60%

Course Materials

Select materials indicated below. Materials will be available on UM Learn. Check regularly as there may be changes/updates to materials.