Pierre-Christian Labeau has vast experience in the areas of native, constitutional and administrative law, having spent almost 20 years in the service of the Government of Quebec. He is Chair of our aboriginal law team.
He is currently acting as the negotiator for the Quebec Government in treaty negotiations with the Innu communities and the Canadian Government and with respect to a consultation agreement on mining projects with two Algonquin communities in the Abitibi region. Mr Labeau also advises clients across Canada concerning legal and strategic issues related to mining, forestry and energy development, including the negotiation of numerous IBAs and the duty to consult. He provides legal advice to public agencies, corporations and banks regarding issues related to the special legal status of aboriginal peoples.
From 2005 to 2007, Mr. Labeau was interim director of the Native and Constitutional Law Division of the Quebec Department of Justice, with particular responsibility for native law and jurisdictional matters. From 1998 to 2005, he was a legal adviser in the Native and Constitutional Law Division, advising the provincial government in land claim negotiations with the Innu. He also represented the Attorney General of Quebec before the Supreme Court of Canada in a number of cases, including Taku River and Haida (Crown’s duty to consult and accommodate aboriginal peoples), Paul (power of provincial administrative tribunal to hear disputes involving the ancestral rights of aboriginal peoples), Kitkatla (power of a provincial legislature to authorize the felling of culturally modified trees) and Pelland (power of the provincial legislatures to limit the production of eggs for extra-provincial markets). From 1994 to 1997, Mr. Labeau assisted the Quebec Government’s negotiator in comprehensive land claim negotiations between the Province, the Innu and Atikamekw peoples and the Canadian government. Prior to this, he spent four years as a constitutional adviser in the Quebec Government’s Canadian Intergovernmental Affairs Secretariat (Meech Lake Agreement, Bélanger-Campeau Commission and Charlottetown Agreement).
Mr. Labeau participated in preparing the interim guide for the consultation of aboriginal peoples published by the Government of Quebec in 2006. He has given numerous lectures on aboriginal law and has taught aboriginal law at Université Laval’s law school.
LL.M., Université Laval, 1998
LL.B., Université Laval, 1987
Selected client work
Mr. Labeau acted recently for the following clients:
- the Quebec Government, as a negotiator in comprehensive land claim negotiations with the Government of Canada and the Innu First Nations
- a forestry company selling large properties situated on lands claimed by First Nations
- a tobacco and cigarette manufacturer in connection with issues of smuggling
- the developer of a large windfarm project on land claimed by a First Nation
- a bank seeking to have a band council guarantee a loan to an aboriginal corporation
- a Canadian merchant and retailer association in connection with amendments to the Quebec Consumer Protection Act
- a municipality acting through a corporation for the construction of a mini-hydroelectric generating station on land claimed by a First Nation
- an operator of casinos on Indian reserves
- Frequent guest speaker on native law
Rankings and recognitions
- Best Lawyers in Canada, 2013 - Aboriginal Law
Memberships and activities
- Canadian Bar Association
- Aboriginal Law Section Executive