Expropriation

Can First Nation land be expropriated by Canada?

Yes, to a limited extent. Canada’s power to expropriate First Nation land is constrained. That power can only be exercised when the expropriation is justified and necessary for a federal public purpose that serves the national interest. Compensation must include provision for equivalent lands so that the land base of the First Nation is not diminished.


Can First Nation land be expropriated by a Province?

No. Under the Framework Agreement there can be no expropriation of First Nation land by a provincial or municipal government or agency.


Can a First Nation expropriate interests in First Nation lands?

Yes. A First Nation will have the power to acquire interests in lands for community works or other First Nation community purposes. It must pay fair compensation to members or nonmembers whose interests are affected.

Some First Nations have voluntarily waived or restricted their expropriation power in their Land Code in accordance with the wishes of their members.


Can a Province or Municipality be exempt from First Nation expropriation?

Yes. It would be possible for a province or municipality to negotiate with a First Nation to limit expropriation. This might be useful in negotiating services from provincial or municipal utilities or other authorities.