Catherine Fagan


Catherine Fagan is based in Montréal and St. John’s, and is a member of the Barreau du Québec, the Law Society of Newfoundland & Labrador and the Law Society of Manitoba. She practices in the areas of Aboriginal law, constitutional law and environmental law. She works exclusively with Indigenous clients to support their litigation, negotiation and governance/development needs. Catherine is committed to working closely with her clients, and to use her analytical and advocacy skills to achieve results. She supports her clients from the inception of a project through to its implementation, with a focus on understanding her clients’ needs and context.

As a negotiator, Catherine negotiates with provincial and federal governments and resource companies. She helps her clients secure deals in various governance, land, environmental and resource development matters. She has expertise in forestry, environmental assessment, impact benefit agreements, protected areas and land development issues.

As a litigator, Catherine works on cases at all court levels, including the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as regulatory hearings. She is experienced in an array of matters such as treaty compliance, Aboriginal rights and title claims, requirements to consult/obtain consent for resource development projects, endangered species and forestry.

As an advisor, Catherine works with her clients to develop and draft community laws and corporate by-laws, and to plan and implement various community development and governance projects. She works with various Aboriginal communities, regional Aboriginal governing bodies, and Aboriginal school boards.

In joining Arbutus Law Group LLP, Catherine contributes a decade of experience with a large Canadian firm. She also brings international knowledge gained through her volunteer work with Lawyers Without Borders Canada where she has, for example, promoted access to justice for Indigenous communities in Colombia and prepared best practice guides for lawyers involved in strategic human rights litigation in various Caribbean nations. She previously worked with the United Nations Secretariat for the Convention on Biodiversity, as well as the Maori Waikato-Tainui Tribal Council in New Zealand. She is a frequent speaker on topics related to Aboriginal rights and resources, including most recently at the Assembly of First Nations.

Catherine is a member of the Southern Inuit community of NunatuKavut in Labrador. She practises law in English and French and also speaks Spanish and German.

Professional Memberships:

  • Barreau du Québec, 2007
  • Law Society of Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Law Society of Manitoba
  • Indigenous Bar Association

Contact Catherine  | catherinefagan@arbutuslaw.caP: 514-803-0623