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Native American Law necessitates not only a keen understanding of federal and state laws, but also an in-depth knowledge of tribal governance. Those working directly with a sovereign tribal government, or on behalf of one, benefit from partnering with a legal team that has the experience needed to navigate this complicated area of law
Dickinson Wright has extensive experience and knowledge of Indian law, tribal rights, and the many legal, economic, and cultural issues impacting Native Americans, First Nations peoples, and those doing business with them.
Our Native American Law practice, which includes members of federally recognized tribes, brings together the skills and experiences of attorneys from closely related disciplines such as energy, water, public finance, corporate and project finance, construction, real estate, gaming, and governance. Together, these professionals offer an unmatched depth and breadth of experience and collective insight into the issues that our clients face.
Economic Development: We actively represent clients in economic development transactions including gaming, energy development, water resource development, and other economic development opportunities. We also help clients navigate the complex issues that arise regarding tribal sovereignty, immunity waiver, and tax matters.
Project Development: Our team works to assure that projects are fully compliant with applicable laws and regulations while ensuring their economic integrity in support of project finance.
Energy and Natural Resource Development: We assist clients in navigating the challenges of developing and procuring energy resources. Our team represents mineral owners, energy producers, and transporters with the development and financing of energy production. Additionally, we assist with sustainability policy development and implementation
General Counsel: Our Native American Law team provides broad counsel to clients in a number of industries, always keeping their business objectives in mind.
Gaming: We represent tribal casinos, gaming regulatory agencies, and gaming vendors and suppliers, assisting with all phases of tribal gaming including securing federal and state approvals, negotiating financing, casino development, establishing vendor relationships, casino operations, and ongoing regulatory compliance.
Litigation: Team lawyers litigate cases involving Native American law, tribal rights, and land claims in federal, state, and tribal courts.
Governance: We counsel local governments, private companies, and other non-Indian clients in their business dealings on Indian reservations or with tribal peoples. Our work includes:
• Advising and representing clients in matters pertaining to tribal sovereignty and tribal sovereign immunity.
• Advising clients on proper employment practices while operating on or near a tribal reservation.
• Providing general representation to tribes, including securing status clarification for unrecognized tribes; developing and drafting tribal constitutions, tribal codes, bylaws and ordinances; and assisting with land claims.
• Organizing and advising tribal business entities, including telephone companies and economic development agencies.
• Providing general representation to tribes and private parties regarding tax issues unique to projects and services on tribal land, involving tribal parties, or otherwise involving Native American law.