At Hutchins, we are dedicated to empowering Indigenous Peoples in asserting their rights, including the right to self-determination, and holding governments to account for their actions and obligations—past, present, and future.
We partner with First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations to ensure the recognition and implementation of Aboriginal and treaty rights, and to assert their political, economic and cultural rights, interests, and autonomy.
We are passionate about advancing both the immediate goals and long term visions of our clients. In this work, we strive to ensure that the legal strategies and solutions we provide are firmly grounded in the varied and unique traditions, experiences, and needs of Indigenous Peoples.
Since the firm’s inception, we have been breaking new ground in Aboriginal law litigation and negotiations. Our senior lawyers, Peter W. Hutchins and Monique Caron, began their careers as part of the negotiations of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement (1975), the first modern-day land claim settlement in Canada. Over the years, our firm has continued to be involved in the implementation of and modifications to this agreement through Complementary Agreements.
For forty years, our lawyers have been assisting clients with many forms of negotiations concerning treaty rights, land claims and specific claims, as well as impact benefit agreements, Federal Court supervised mediation, and out of court settlements. Our lawyers have developed expertise in negotiation, mediation, litigation, counsel and special advisory work for First Nations, Métis and Inuit people across Canada and in New York State. We have worked with communities seeking relief or the implementation of measures on a full range of legal matters including human rights, environmental, administrative and economic matters. Due to our firm’s acquired experience and knowledge, governments have also sought out our services on Indigenous governance, treaty implementation and legislative drafting.
Indigenous artwork plays a pivotal role in the preservation and transmission of knowledge, identity and culture. It has for centuries provided means of resistance against colonial law, assimilationist policies and cultural genocide.
Throughout the years, we have continuously supported and promoted Indigenous artists, who have the power to change perceptions and understanding within their communities and beyond.