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Nunavut Waters and Nunavut Surface Rights Tribunal Act (S.C. 2002, c. 10)

Act current to 2024-05-28 and last amended on 2019-08-28. Previous Versions

PART 2Nunavut Surface Rights Tribunal (continued)

DIVISION 1Establishment and Organization of Tribunal (continued)

Tribunal Established (continued)

Marginal note:Indemnification of Tribunal members and employees

 The members and employees of the Tribunal shall be indemnified by the Tribunal against all damages awarded against them, any settlement paid by them with the approval of the Minister and all expenses reasonably incurred by them, in respect of any claim arising out of their functions as members or employees, if those functions were carried out honestly and in good faith with a view to the best interests of the Tribunal.


Marginal note:Language of business

  •  (1) The Tribunal shall conduct its business in both of the official languages of Canada in accordance with the Official Languages Act and any directives of the Minister and, on request by any designated Inuit organization, in Inuktitut.

  • Marginal note:Translation or interpretation

    (2) Subject to subsections 16(1) and (2) of the Official Languages Act, nothing in subsection (1) shall be construed to prevent the use of translation or interpretation services where a member of the Tribunal is otherwise unable to conduct business in Inuktitut or in either official language.

  • Marginal note:Witnesses

    (3) The Tribunal has, in any proceedings before it, the duty to ensure that any person giving evidence before it may be heard in Inuktitut or in either official language, and that in being so heard the person will not be placed at a disadvantage by not being heard in another of those languages.

  • Marginal note:Duty to provide simultaneous interpretation

    (4) The Tribunal has, in any proceedings before it, the duty to ensure that, at the request of any party to the proceedings, facilities are made available for the simultaneous interpretation of the proceedings, including the evidence given and taken, from Inuktitut into one of the official languages, from one of the official languages into Inuktitut or from one of the official languages into the other.

  • Marginal note:Translation of documents

    (5) The Tribunal has, in any proceedings before it, the duty to provide a translation of any document prepared in Inuktitut or in one of the official languages for the purpose of the proceedings by a party to the proceedings into one or both of the official languages or into Inuktitut or the other official language where necessary to enable another party to the proceedings to understand and deal with the document.

  • Marginal note:Translation of orders

    (6) The Tribunal shall, on the request of a party to any proceedings before it, provide a translation into Inuktitut of any order made in the proceedings, including any reasons given for the order.

Head Office and Meetings

Marginal note:Head office

 The head office of the Tribunal shall be at Iqaluit or at such other place in Nunavut as the Governor in Council may designate.

Marginal note:Business meetings

  •  (1) The meetings of the Tribunal shall be held at such times and at such places as the Tribunal considers necessary or desirable for the proper conduct of its business.

  • Marginal note:Participation by telephone

    (2) Subject to the by-laws of the Tribunal, any member may participate in a business meeting by means of telephone or other communications facilities that are likely to enable all persons participating in the meeting to hear each other, and a member so participating is deemed for all purposes of this Part to be present at that meeting.


Marginal note:By-laws

 The Tribunal may make by-laws respecting the conduct and management of the internal administrative affairs of the Tribunal, including by-laws respecting the assignment of members to panels of the Tribunal.

General Powers

Marginal note:Staff

 The Tribunal may employ such officers and employees and engage the services of such agents, advisers and experts as are necessary for the proper conduct of its business and may fix the terms and conditions of their employment or engagement and pay their remuneration.

Marginal note:Government facilities and information

 In exercising its powers or performing its duties or functions, the Tribunal may, where appropriate, use the services and facilities of departments, boards and agencies of the Government of Canada or the Government of Nunavut and may, subject to any other Act of Parliament, obtain from any such department, board or agency any information that is required to exercise those powers or perform those duties or functions.

Marginal note:Property and contracts

  •  (1) The Tribunal may, for the purposes of conducting its business,

    • (a) acquire property in its own name and dispose of the property; and

    • (b) enter into contracts in its own name.

  • Marginal note:Legal proceedings

    (2) Actions, suits or other legal proceedings in respect of any right or obligation acquired or incurred by the Tribunal may be brought or taken by or against the Tribunal in its name in any court that would have jurisdiction if the Tribunal were a corporation.


Marginal note:Status

 The Tribunal is an institution of public government but is not an agent of Her Majesty.

Financial Provisions

Marginal note:Annual budget

  •  (1) The Tribunal shall annually submit a budget for the following fiscal year to the Minister for consideration.

  • Marginal note:Accounts

    (2) The Tribunal shall maintain books of account and records in relation to them in accordance with accounting principles recommended by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada or its successor.

  • Marginal note:Consolidated financial statements

    (3) The Tribunal shall, within such time after the end of each fiscal year as the Minister specifies, prepare consolidated financial statements in respect of that fiscal year in accordance with the accounting principles referred to in subsection (2), and shall include in the consolidated financial statements any information or statements that are required in support of them.

  • Marginal note:Audit

    (4) The accounts, financial statements and financial transactions of the Tribunal shall be audited annually by the Auditor General of Canada. The Auditor General of Canada shall make a report of the audit to the Tribunal and the Minister.

  • 2002, c. 10, s. 114
  • 2017, c. 26, s. 62

Annual Report

Marginal note:Annual report

 The Tribunal shall, within three months after the end of each fiscal year, submit to the Minister a report on its activities in that year, and shall include in the annual report information on the following matters:

  • (a) its operations;

  • (b) the number of applications made to it;

  • (c) the orders made by it; and

  • (d) such other matters as the Minister may specify.

Marginal note:Publication

 The Tribunal shall publish the annual report.

Jurisdiction of Tribunal

Marginal note:Negotiations

  •  (1) No person may apply to the Tribunal for an order unless the person has attempted to resolve the matter in dispute by negotiation in accordance with the rules made under section 130 or, until such rules have been made, in a manner satisfactory to the Tribunal.

  • Marginal note:Resolved matters

    (2) The Tribunal may not hear or make an order in respect of any matter that was resolved by negotiation unless the parties consent or it appears, in the opinion of the Tribunal, that there has been a material change in the facts or circumstances that formed the basis of the negotiated resolution.

Marginal note:Matters not raised

 The Tribunal may not make an order in respect of a matter that is not raised by any of the parties.

Applications and Hearings

Marginal note:Informal and expeditious

 An application before the Tribunal shall be dealt with as informally and expeditiously as the circumstances and considerations of fairness permit and, in particular, the Tribunal

  • (a) is not bound by any strict rules of evidence;

  • (b) may take into account any material it considers relevant;

  • (c) shall give due weight to Inuit knowledge of wildlife and the environment; and

  • (d) shall, in hearing an application under Division 5, take into account the social, cultural and economic importance of wildlife to Inuit.

Marginal note:General powers of Tribunal

 The Tribunal has, with respect to the attendance and examination of witnesses, the production and inspection of documents and all other matters necessary or proper in relation to applications before the Tribunal, all the powers, rights and privileges of a superior court.

Marginal note:Parties to a hearing

 The following are parties to a hearing before the Tribunal:

  • (a) the applicant and any other person who may apply for an order in respect of which the hearing is held; and

  • (b) the owner of land that would be subject to an order in respect of which the hearing is held and any occupant of that land.

Marginal note:Hearing in absence of party

 The Tribunal may not hear an application in the absence of any party unless

  • (a) that party consents to the holding of the hearing in their absence; or

  • (b) notice of the hearing was given to that party in accordance with the rules of the Tribunal or, in the absence of rules respecting the giving of such notice, in a manner satisfactory to the Tribunal.

Marginal note:Location of hearing

 Unless the parties agree otherwise,

  • (a) an application under section 155 or 167 in relation to an order made under section 155 shall be heard in a community that is convenient to the claimant; and

  • (b) any other application shall be heard in the community that is closest to the land involved.

Marginal note:Hearing of applications

  •  (1) An application to the Tribunal shall be heard by a panel consisting of three members or, if the parties consent, by one member. If one of the members of a panel is absent, the hearing may continue with only one of the members if the parties consent, but if the parties do not consent, the application shall be reheard by another panel or member.

  • Marginal note:Disposition of application

    (2) A member who is not present during the entire hearing of an application may not participate in the disposition of the application.

  • Marginal note:Residency requirement

    (3) Where an application involves Inuit-owned land, at least two of the members of the panel hearing the application, or in the case of an application heard by one member, that member, shall be resident in Nunavut.

Marginal note:Assignment of members

  •  (1) Members shall be assigned to panels in accordance with the by-laws of the Tribunal or, in the absence of by-laws respecting the assignment of members, by the Chairperson.

  • Marginal note:Conflict of interest

    (2) A member shall not be assigned to, or continue to, hear an application if doing so would place the member in a material conflict of interest.

  • Marginal note:Status of Inuk or interest in land

    (3) A member is not placed in a material conflict of interest merely because the member has the status under the Agreement of an Inuk or has an interest in land in Nunavut.

Marginal note:Powers, duties and functions

  •  (1) A panel, or member hearing an application, has all of the powers, and shall perform all of the duties and functions, of the Tribunal in relation to the application.

  • Marginal note:Status of order

    (2) Any order disposing of an application is an order of the Tribunal.

Marginal note:Information made available

 Before disposing of an application, the Tribunal shall make any information that it intends to use in the disposition available to the parties and provide them with a reasonable opportunity to respond to the information.

Marginal note:References to Federal Court

 The Tribunal may, at any stage of its proceedings, refer to the Federal Court any question or issue of law or of jurisdiction, other than a question or issue that has been referred to an arbitration panel established under Article 38 of the Agreement.


Marginal note:Records

  •  (1) The Tribunal shall

    • (a) keep a public record of all applications made to the Tribunal and orders and other decisions made by the Tribunal in respect of applications;

    • (b) issue, on request and on payment of such fee as the Tribunal may fix, certified copies of any order or other decision, rule or by-law made by the Tribunal; and

    • (c) have the custody and care of all documents filed with the Tribunal.

  • Marginal note:Fees

    (2) Any fee received by the Tribunal under paragraph (1)(b) may be used by the Tribunal for its operations.


Marginal note:Procedures, mediation and costs

  •  (1) The Tribunal may make rules

    • (a) respecting the practice and procedure in relation to applications to and hearings before the Tribunal, including the service of documents and the imposition of reasonable time limits;

    • (b) establishing procedures that may be followed in the mediation of matters in dispute; and

    • (c) respecting the allowance of costs, including rules

      • (i) establishing a schedule of fees and other expenses incurred by a party in relation to applications to or hearings before the Tribunal that may be allowed as part of that party’s costs under this Part, and

      • (ii) respecting the circumstances under which the Tribunal may allow costs with respect to matters dealt with in the schedule of fees and other expenses on a basis other than that established by the schedule.

  • Marginal note:Negotiations

    (2) The Tribunal shall make rules establishing procedures to be followed in the conduct of negotiations for the purposes of subsection 117(1), either generally or with respect to any class of applications.

Marginal note:Non-application of Statutory Instruments Act

 Sections 3, 5 and 11 of the Statutory Instruments Act do not apply in respect of the rules of the Tribunal.

Marginal note:Pre-publication

  •  (1) The Tribunal shall give notice at least sixty days before making a rule by

    • (a) publishing the proposed rule in a newspaper or other periodical that, in the opinion of the Tribunal, has a large circulation in Nunavut; and

    • (b) sending a copy of the proposed rule to the council of each municipality in Nunavut.

  • Marginal note:Representations invited

    (2) The notice referred to in subsection (1) shall include an invitation to interested persons to make representations in writing to the Tribunal about the proposed rule within sixty days after publication of the notice.

  • Marginal note:Response to representations

    (3) The Tribunal may not make the rule until after it has responded to any representations made within the time limit referred to in subsection (2).

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (4) Once a notice is published under subsection (1), no further notice is required to be published about any amendment to the proposed rule that results from representations made by interested persons.

  • Marginal note:Publication

    (5) As soon as possible after the rule has been made, the Tribunal shall

    • (a) publish it in a newspaper or other periodical that, in the opinion of the Tribunal, has a large circulation in Nunavut; and

    • (b) publish a notice in the Canada Gazette that the rule has been made, indicating the newspaper or periodical in which it has been published.


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