FAQ

For the Membership

At this time, within the territory of Nunavut, limited liability partnerships are not operating. If you have any questions regarding this, please contact the Law Society by phone at 1 (867) 979-2330.

General Rule

  • Within the Territory of Nunavut, lawyers can administer oaths, affidavits, affirmation and statutory declarations.
  • Within the Territory of Nunavut, lawyers are not automatically notaries public and must be appointed.

Oaths, Affidavits, Affirmations and Statutory Declarations for use in Nunavut

Pursuant to S. 65 of the Evidence Act

65. (1) An oath, affidavit, affirmation or statutory declaration for use in Nunavut may be administered, sworn, affirmed or made within Nunavut before

      (e) a barrister or solicitor duly admitted and entitled to practise as such in Nunavut;

Appointment of Notary Public

Pursuant to S. 79 of the Evidence Act, the Commissioner may appoint notaries public for Nunavut. In order to be appointed each person must:

  1. be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
  2. resides within Nunavut;
  3. is either entitled to practice as a barrister or solicitor in Nunavut or has satisfies the Commissioner, pursuant to an examination that he Commissioner may impose, that he/she is qualified to act as a notary public; and
  4. the Commissioner is satisfied that the appointment of a notary public is necessary for the public convenience
    1. in the place where the person to be appointed resides and intends to act as a notary public, or
    2. where the person to be appointed is an officer, servant or employee of the Government of Canada, in the places where the duties of that person require him or her to be from time to time.

Sections 75 and 83 of the Evidence Act outline the powers both hold:

Powers of a Notary Public

  • Administering oaths attested by his or her signature and seal.
  • Attesting commercial instruments brought before the notary public for public protestation and given of notarial certificates of his or her acts.
  • May demand, receive and have all the rights, profits and emoluments rightfully appertaining and belonging to the exercise of these powers.
  • Has and may exercise the powers of a commissioner for oaths.

Powers of a Commissioner for Oaths

  • May take any affidavit in any manner concerning any legal proceedings in Nunavut or in which the commissioner for oaths is authorized by any law or Act, although the application or matter is not made or pending in any Court.

Pursuant to S. 50 of the Rules of the Law Society of Nunavut, if an applicant has not taken their oath within the one year deadline then the following could take place:

  1. The application lapses and any fees paid by the applicant are forfeited to the Society; or
  2. The applicant may petition the Executive to waive the lapse and forfeiture referred to in subsection (1) and shall submit with his or her petition,
    1. A certificate of standing from each provincial or territorial law society or comparable body of which the applicant is a member dated not earlier than 30 days prior to the presentation of the petition; and
    2. the other information or documents that the Executive may request.

The Executive may,

  1. waive the forfeiture of fees;
  2. extend, for a specified time, the period during which the approved applicant is eligible for admission as a member of the Society.

If an application for admission under section is not approved or withdrawn, the Secretary shall refund all the fees and levies paid to the applicant except the application fee, which is forfeited to the Society.

General Rule

  • Within the Territory of Nunavut, lawyers can administer oaths, affidavits, affirmation and statutory declarations.
  • Within the Territory of Nunavut, lawyers are not automatically notaries public and must be appointed.

Oaths, Affidavits, Affirmations and Statutory Declarations for use in Nunavut

Pursuant to S. 65 of the Evidence Act

65. (1) An oath, affidavit, affirmation or statutory declaration for use in Nunavut may be administered, sworn, affirmed or made within Nunavut before

      (e) a barrister or solicitor duly admitted and entitled to practise as such in Nunavut;

Appointment of Notary Public

Pursuant to S. 79 of the Evidence Act, the Commissioner may appoint notaries public for Nunavut. In order to be appointed each person must:

  1. be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada;
  2. resides within Nunavut;
  3. is either entitled to practice as a barrister or solicitor in Nunavut or has satisfies the Commissioner, pursuant to an examination that he Commissioner may impose, that he/she is qualified to act as a notary public; and
  4. the Commissioner is satisfied that the appointment of a notary public is necessary for the public convenience
    1. in the place where the person to be appointed resides and intends to act as a notary public, or
    2. where the person to be appointed is an officer, servant or employee of the Government of Canada, in the places where the duties of that person require him or her to be from time to time.

Sections 75 and 83 of the Evidence Act outline the powers both hold:

Powers of a Notary Public

  • Administering oaths attested by his or her signature and seal.
  • Attesting commercial instruments brought before the notary public for public protestation and given of notarial certificates of his or her acts.
  • May demand, receive and have all the rights, profits and emoluments rightfully appertaining and belonging to the exercise of these powers.
  • Has and may exercise the powers of a commissioner for oaths.

Powers of a Commissioner for Oaths

  • May take any affidavit in any manner concerning any legal proceedings in Nunavut or in which the commissioner for oaths is authorized by any law or Act, although the application or matter is not made or pending in any Court.

Pursuant to S. 80.7 of the Rules of the Law Society of Nunavut, a lawyer shall retain a record of the information and any documents obtained for the purposes of sections 80.3 and 80.6(3) and copies of all documents received for the purposes of section 80.6(1) for the longer of:

  1. The duration of the lawyer and client relationship and for as long as necessary for the purpose of providing service to the client, and
  2. A period of at least six years following completion of the work for which the lawyer was retained.

The answer to this will vary depending on any discipline and or liability claims of the applicant or any other conviction history of the applicant.

That being said, if the application is standard and non-complex, a membership application can take within twenty-five business days to be approved. First, the application must be recommended by the Membership Committee, this can take fifteen business days. After the application has been recommended by the Membership Committee, it is given to the Executive for approval, this can also take up to ten business days.

There is a general timeline when you should submit your application to the Law Society listed on our website.

The dates listed on the calendars represent the dates in which the Law Society submits membership and Student-at-Law applications to the Membership Committee for recommendation.

While both still retain membership with the Law Society, only active members are entitled to practice law in Nunavut.

The Law Society does not offer the category to retire but only to either resign or withdraw from practice.

Please note that if you resign and you wish to resume practicing law within Nunavut, it would require you to reapply for one of our three membership types.

If you withdraw from practice, you are still a member but choosing to switch to inactive practice. If you wish to resume practicing law within Nunavut, it would require you to change your status back to active. Details and instructions pertaining to this change can be found by following this link.

‘Address for service’ means the street and mailing addresses of a residence, office or other place of business within the territories.

All non-resident members of the Law Society of Nunavut are required to have an address of service or an agent in Territory.

To receive information on who can act as an Agent of Service, please contact the Law Society directly by calling us at 867-979-2330 or toll free at 844-979-2330 or by email at administrator@lawsociety.nu.ca.

Pursuant to S. 18 of the Legal Profession Act, a person is qualified for admission to the Law Society when;

  1. they have been duly called to the bar of a province or a territory or has been admitted to practise as an attorney, advocate, barrister or solicitor in any superior court of a province or territory; and
  2. is of good character and of good standing in the law society of the province or territory of which he or she is an attorney, advocate, barrister or solicitor.

If you meet these criteria you will be able to apply for one of our three membership types, depending on your credentials. Regular Membership, Canadian Legal Advisor or a Restricted Appearance Certificate. If you are applying for Regular Membership or a Canadian Legal Advisor, after your application is approved by the Executive you will have 1 year to take your Oath.

Regardless of whether you are applying for Regular Membership, Canadian Legal Advisor or a Restricted Appearance Certificate you will need to complete and submit the Combined Application Forms. These forms and other information regarding information on membership can be found here.

There can be several factors which will help you determine which membership type if best for you. For example, if you will only have one to three clients or matters and you believe your membership will only last a short amount of time, a Restricted Appearance Certificate would be best for you. Similarly, if you will have several clients and matters Regular Membership would be best. Lastly, if you hold a Civil Law Degree, you will be required to obtain a Canadian Legal Certificate. For more information regarding the three types of memberships with the Law Society you can visit our website following this link.

A Canadian Legal Advisor is a Certificate for lawyers who have a Bachelor of Civil Law, these lawyers are restricted to the following areas of practice:

  • The Law of Quebec
  • Matters under federal jurisdiction, and
  • Matters involving public international law.

A Regular Member is able to actively practice all areas of law within the Territory.

The Law Society Services

The LSN is a self-governing body. It is funded through its members via membership fees.

The Law Society is able to provide service in both English and French. Along with this, the Law Society maintains an Inuktitut hotline available for the convenience of those who feel most comfortable speaking in Inuktitut. The number is 1-888-990-4665 nationwide or 975-2120 locally in Iqaluit where are office is located.

The Law Society also has a Toll free number: 844-979-2330.

The Law Society is not authorized to offer legal advice. We can however offer you a list of lawyers who may be able to help you with your situation through our referral service.

If this is something you may be interested in, please call us at 867-979-2330 or toll free at 844- 979-2330.

According to s. 14(3) of the Legal Profession Act, both the Roll and the Record are open for inspection by any person on reasonable notice.

Pursuant S. 34 of the Rules of the Law Society of Nunavut, the following information in the Roll report can be inspected.

  1. Full name, date of birth, date of admission to the Society, address and number of the Roll assigned to the member;
  2. Date and particulars of the member’s removal from the Roll, if any; and
  3. Date and particulars of the member’s reinstatement to the roll, if any.

According to s. 35 of the Rules, the following information in the Record may be inspected.

  1. Full name, date of birth, address and number on the Roll assigned to the member;
  2. Date on which the member’s application for membership was approved by the Executive;
  3. Details of membership in any other law society or comparable body;
  4. Election of the member as a member of the Executive;
  5. Dates of any findings of guilt for conduct deserving of discipline and any sanctions imposed;
  6. Date and particulars of the member’s removal from the Roll, if any;
  7. Date and particulars of the member’s reinstatement to the Roll, if any; and
  8. Such further particulars as the Executive may direct.

Some members of the Law Society participate in a referral service. This means that these lawyers inform the Law Society which areas of law they practice (ex. Real estate, employment, criminal) and that they are open to being contacted by prospective clients who may need their assistance.

Once provided with this information the Law Society is able to generate a list of lawyers who practice in a specific or multiple areas of law to give to a member of the pubic.

Nunavut is unique because only about a third of our lawyers are “resident lawyers” (living within Nunavut) whereas the remainder reside outside of the Territory and are “Non-Resident” lawyers.

It is important to note that there will often be both non-resident and resident lawyers on the referral list and just because a lawyer does not live within Nunavut does not mean they cannot be of assistance.

To access the Law Society’s referral service, you can either send an email with your request to administrator@lawsociety.nu.ca or call us at 867-979-2330 or toll free at 844-979-2330.

For the Public

The Law Society has a duty to protect the public interest and requires the lawyers in our territory to practice law ethically and competently.

A person with questions or concerns about a lawyer’s professional conduct can make a complaint to the Law Society directly. You can contact the Law Society directly at 867-979-2330 or toll free at 844-979-2330.

There is a complaint form available on our webpage which you can also complete.

The Law Society is available to assist you with filling out the form or to answer questions you may have.

To download a copy of the complaint form, please click on the link.

A few examples of how a lawyer may be able to benefit you are as follows:

  • Appearing as counsel of advocate
  • Drawing, revising or settling any; petition, memorandum, association, articles of association, application, settlement, affidavit, minute, resolution, by-law or other document relating to the incorporation, registration, organization, dissolution or windingup of a corporate body.
  • Any pleading for use in any judicial proceeding
  • Any will, deed of settlement, trust deed, power of attorney or document relating to any probate letters of administration or the estate of a deceased person/
  • Any document relating to proceedings under an Act of Nunavut or an Act of Canada
  • Any instrument relating to property that is intended, permitted or required to be registered, recorded or filed in any registry or other public office.
  • Drawing any act or deed or negotiating in any way for the settlement of, or settling, any claim or demand for damages founded in tort,
  • Agreeing to place at the disposal of any other person the services of a barrister and solicitor, and
  • Giving legal advice.

If you have questions as to the status of a lawyer with the Law Society of Nunavut, you can make an inquiry by calling the society. The Law Society will be able to inform you whether or not a lawyer is in fact a member and is entitled to practice law within the territory.

The Law Society does have a number of lawyers who are able to practice law in both English and French, however this may depend on whether or not a lawyer in the area of law you are seeking to obtain counsel is bilingual.

There are many situations where seeing a lawyer may be helpful, the following is a list of just a few of those reasons:

  • Buying or selling property (Real estate)
  • Creating or amending a will.
  • If you’ve been detained.
  • If you’ve been charged with a criminal offence.
  • If you have been unjustly fired from your job.
  • If you are have been unjustly evicted.