Sandra Gogal has a nationally recognized practice in Aboriginal and environmental law. She has extensive experience advising mining, energy, oil, gas, and engineering companies, lenders, and investors, as well as provincial and federal government agencies, on Aboriginal, regulatory, and related project matters.
Sandra has a combined 20 years’ experience in-house and in private practice advising on resource developments across Canada. She has advised general counsel on matters relating to Aboriginal rights and consultation, environmental assessments, regulatory matters, government relations, and negotiations. She has negotiated several successful commercial arrangements, impact and benefit agreements, and partnerships between industry and First Nations on major hydro-electric projects and mining projects across Canada.
After a successful career on the east coast, Sandra moved to Ontario in 2005 to work for the government of Ontario where she advised the Ministry of Natural Resources on Aboriginal consultation in the areas of hydro-electric and wind power, forestry, and mining. Her experience in both the private and public sectors helps her to provide sound strategic and legal advice to her clients.
Sandra is published in the areas of Aboriginal and environmental law, has spoken at national and international forums on Aboriginal law in Canada, has been recognized by her peers in The Best Lawyers in Canada since 2008 for Aboriginal and environmental law, and was recognized in the 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 editions of Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of Aboriginal law. She is the Past Chair for the Canadian Bar Association Aboriginal Law section and a leader in Aboriginal law at Miller Thomson.
Sandra makes frequent presentations to Insight, Canadian Institute, Canada Forum, and the Conference Board of Canada in relation to Aboriginal matters including consultation requirements in the hydro-electric and mining sectors, how to achieve effective and enforceable impact and benefit agreements and other accommodation agreements, how to incorporate overlapping claims and Métis rights, the incorporation of Aboriginal businesses, and current legal updates.
Professional achievements & leadership
- Chambers Canada ranked lawyer, Aboriginal Law, 2016 – 2017
- Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers in Canada – Aboriginal Law, 2015
- Chambers Global ranked lawyer, Aboriginal Law, 2013 – 2016
- Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, Aboriginal Law, 2012 – 2016
- Best Lawyers in Canada, Aboriginal Law; Environmental Law, 2008 – 2016
- Past Branch Vice-President, Atlantic Provinces Arbitration and Mediation Institute Inc.
- Co-Chair, Miller Thomson National Aboriginal Law group
- SCC Affirms Ontario’s Jurisdiction to “Take Up” Lands in Treaty 3, Aboriginal Law Update, August 2014
- Injunctions Issued Against Companies for Lack of Aboriginal Consultation, Aboriginal Law Update, March 2012
- The Implications of the Decision in Keewatin v. Minister of Natural Resources, The 2012 Lexpert®/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, 2012
- Keewatin v. Minister of Natural Resources 2011 ONSC 4801 – Case Summary, Aboriginal Law Update, August 2011
- New Draft Requirements for Aboriginal Consultation on Renewable Energy Projects, Aboriginal Law Update, August 2011
- Resource Revenue Sharing in the Context of Consultation Requirements, Key Developments in Environmental Law 2008-2009 (Toronto: Canada Law Book), 2009
- The Platinex Decisions – The New Accommodation?, Aboriginal Law Update, September 2007
- Incorporation of Traditional Ecological Knowledge in the Environmental Assessment Process, EnviroNotes!, Spring 2007
- Aboriginal Impact and Benefit Agreements: Practical Considerations, (2005) 43 Alta. L. Rev. 129, 2005
- Law Society of Newfoundland
- Law Society of Upper Canada
- Canadian Bar Association
- Past Chair, Canadian Bar Association, Aboriginal Law Section
- Advisory Board, Counsel on Corporate Aboriginal Relations: Conference Board of Canada
- Canadian Aboriginal Minerals Association
- Ontario Mining Association
- Mining Association of Canada
- Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada
- Executive Member, Canadian Bar Association, Alternative Dispute Resolution Section, Aboriginal and Environmental, Energy and Resource Law Section
Bar admissions & education
- Ontario Bar, 2005
- Newfoundland Bar, 1992
- LL.B., Dalhousie University, 1991
- B.A., Memorial University of Newfoundland, 1988
Miller Thomson receives top honours in 2017 Chambers Canada guide
Thirteen Miller Thomson lawyers and four practice groups are named in the 2017 edition of Chambers Canada. The guide ranks lawyers and law firms in over 40 specialist practice areas across Canada, based on client feedback, peer interviews and an assessment of...
Miller Thomson lawyers recognized in The Best Lawyers in Canada 2017
We are pleased to announce 126 Miller Thomson lawyers from across the country and in numerous areas of law have been recognized for their expertise in the 2017 edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada. This result is up from...
Lexpert recognizes 80 Miller Thomson lawyers
Miller Thomson is pleased to announce 80 lawyers across ten of our offices are recognized in the 2016 edition of The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory as leading practitioners in their field. Published annually since 1997, The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory...
Lexpert recognizes six Miller Thomson lawyers as global mining leaders
Miller Thomson is pleased to share that six of its lawyers have been recognized in Lexpert’s Leading Canadian Lawyers in Global Mining 2015/2016 edition. Published annually, the guide serves as a key resource to companies seeking to retain the top...
Miller Thomson receives top honours in Chambers Canada
Twelve Miller Thomson lawyers and four practice groups were ranked in the recently published first edition of the Chambers Canada Guide. The Guide ranks leading lawyers and law firms practicing in all provinces and territories across Canada, in over 40...
Chambers Global 2015 honours for Miller Thomson
Five Miller Thomson lawyers and two practice groups have been recognized in the 2015 edition of Chambers Global, a ranking of the world’s leading lawyers and law firms. And for the first time, the firm’s offices in Saskatchewan are listed as an...
Chambers Global 2014 honours for Miller Thomson
Eight Miller Thomson lawyers and two practice groups have been recognized in the 2014 edition of Chambers Global, a ranking of the world’s leading lawyers and law firms. Chambers & Partners researches legal markets each year, identifying the leading firms...
Miller Thomson recognized in the Best Lawyers in Canada 2014 edition.
More about Best Lawyers We are pleased to announce that 80 Miller Thomson lawyers have been recognized in the 2014 edition of Best Lawyers in Canada (this is 15 more lawyers than last year). Seventeen lawyers are new to the list. Additionally,...
Miller Thomson lawyers recognized in 2013 Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory.
Miller Thomson is thrilled to announce that 43 of the firm’s lawyers from across Canada were recently recognized in 25 categories in the 2013 Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory. These rankings, based on extensive annual peer-review surveys, identify leading lawyers in Canada across...
Miller Thomson recognized in Chambers Global 2013
Ten Miller Thomson lawyers and three practice groups (Labour and Employment, Environmental and Insolvency and Restructuring) were recommended in this year’s Chambers Global ranking of the world’s leading lawyers. Each year, Chambers Global ranks approximately 60 Canadian law firms and...
Sandra Gogal speaks at Aboriginal Consultation & Engagement conference
Sandra Gogal speaks at the Canadian Institute’s Aboriginal Consultation & Engagement conference in Toronto. She speaks on May 17 on the subject of “Implementing the Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act” as well as hosting a workshop on May 18 on the...
Sandra Gogal speaks on UN Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples
Sandra Gogal is part of a legal panel at the National Aboriginal Business Opportunities Conference discussing the implications of implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Sandra Gogal speaks at cannabis law conference
Sandra speaks at and chairs the Canadian Cannabis Business Week program at the Canadian Institute’s “Cannabis Law & Regulations” conference.
Sandra Gogal speaks at cannabis business conference
Sandra Gogal speaks on a legal panel discussing “What Are the Possible Business Models for Canada’s Cannabis Business – And How to Develop Sustainable Business Strategies” at the Canadian Institute’s Canadian Cannabis Business Conference.
Sandra Gogal presents on Aboriginal relations in Canada
Sandra Gogal speaks to the Council on Corporate Aboriginal Relations on current court cases and legal developments that are shaping Aboriginal relations in Canada.
Sandra Gogal speaks at Insight Aboriginal conference
Sandra Gogal presents “Addressing Conflicts in Linear Projects that Touch on Multiple Aboriginal Interests” at Insight’s Unlocking Aboriginal Potential Conference.
Sandra Gogal speaks at Aboriginal resource development forum
Sandra Gogal presents on “Creative Funding for Consultations: Crown and Industry” at the Resource Development on Aboriginal Lands forum hosted by PBLI.
Sandra Gogal speaks on resource revenue sharing
Sandra Gogal speaks at Lexpert’s 7th Annual Aboriginal Law: Consultation and Other Emerging Issues conference on the subject of “Resource Revenue Sharing Across Canada and the Challenges Associated with Implementing the U.N. Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples”. The...
Sandra Gogal speaks on Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act
Sandra Gogal presents on “Reporting on Payments Made to Aboriginal Governments: How the Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act will Affect Industry” at the Global Anti-Corruption & Compliance in Mining Conference.
Sandra Gogal will be co-chairing the new Osgoode Certificate in Fundamentals of Aboriginal Law offered over 5 days from September 23 to November 4, 2015. She will also be moderating and presenting on Day 5 with respect to Consultation Approaches and Policies Across Canada.
The Shifting Sands of Yukon’s Legal Landscape: Are You Prepared?
Legal certainty is a cornerstone to a healthy investment culture. In the last few years Yukon has seen a significant shift in its legal landscape with the introduction Bill S-6, numerous court challenges and unresolved Aboriginal land claims. There is...
Emerging Issues in Aboriginal Law as it Relates to Resource Development Activities
In recognition of Saskatchewan Mining Week 2014 we are pleased to present a seminar on “Emerging Issues in Aboriginal Law as it Relates to Resource Development Activities.” Our session focuses on understanding the legal risks and trends in case law...
Miller Thomson is hosting a seminar on “Understanding Aboriginal & Environmental Issues in Project Development” on Nov. 26 in Waterloo
Miller Thomson is hosting a seminar on “Understanding Aboriginal & Environmental Issues in Project Development” on Nov. 13 in Vancouver.
Topics on the agenda: Aboriginal Consultation Impact Benefit Agreements Traditional Ecological Knowledge in the Consultation Process Environmental Issues
Breakfast Seminar :
SCC Affirms Ontario’s Jurisdiction to “Take Up” Lands in Treaty 3
On July 11, 2014, the Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) released its unanimous decision in Grassy Narrows First Nation v. Ontario (Natural Resources), 2014 SCC 48. The question before the SCC was whether the Province of Ontario or the Federal...
Injunctions Issued Against Companies for Lack of Aboriginal Consultation
Two recent decisions in Ontario and British Columbia provide examples of the courts temporarily restraining commercial development for a lack of adequate consultation with affected Aboriginal groups. Wahgoshig First Nation v. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Ontario et...
The Implications of the Decision in Keewatin v. Minister of Natural Resources
The 2012 Lexpert®/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada
Keewatin v. Minister of Natural Resources 2011 ONSC 4801 – Case Summary
Introduction In a landmark 300+ page decision, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice held that the government of Ontario does not have the authority to interfere with harvesting rights of the Grassy Narrows First Nation under Treaty 3. Background Grassy...
New Draft Requirements for Aboriginal Consultation on Renewable Energy Projects
The Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) has released a Draft Aboriginal Consultation Guide for preparing a Renewable Energy Approval Application (“Guide”). The Guide lays out the requirements for project proponents to consult with Aboriginal communities in the Renewable Energy...
Resource Revenue Sharing in the Context of Consultation Requirements
Key Developments in Environmental Law 2008-2009 (Toronto: Canada Law Book)