Indian Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. I-5)

Act current to 2014-10-15 and last amended on 2013-04-01. Previous Versions

Indian Act

R.S.C., 1985, c. I-5

An Act respecting Indians

SHORT TITLE

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Indian Act.

  • R.S., c. I-6, s. 1.

INTERPRETATION

Marginal note:Definitions
  •  (1) In this Act,

    “band”

    « bande »

    “band” means a body of Indians

    • (a) for whose use and benefit in common, lands, the legal title to which is vested in Her Majesty, have been set apart before, on or after September 4, 1951,

    • (b) for whose use and benefit in common, moneys are held by Her Majesty, or

    • (c) declared by the Governor in Council to be a band for the purposes of this Act;

    “Band List”

    « liste de bande »

    “Band List” means a list of persons that is maintained under section 8 by a band or in the Department;

    “child”

    « enfant »

    “child” includes a legally adopted child and a child adopted in accordance with Indian custom;

    “common-law partner”

    « conjoint de fait »

    “common-law partner”, in relation to an individual, means a person who is cohabiting with the individual in a conjugal relationship, having so cohabited for a period of at least one year;

    “council of the band”

    « conseil de la bande »

    “council of the band” means

    • (a) in the case of a band to which section 74 applies, the council established pursuant to that section,

    • (b) in the case of a band to which section 74 does not apply, the council chosen according to the custom of the band, or, where there is no council, the chief of the band chosen according to the custom of the band;

    “Department”

    « ministère »

    “Department” means the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development;

    “designated lands”

    « terres désignées »

    “designated lands” means a tract of land or any interest therein the legal title to which remains vested in Her Majesty and in which the band for whose use and benefit it was set apart as a reserve has, otherwise than absolutely, released or surrendered its rights or interests, whether before or after the coming into force of this definition;

    “elector”

    « électeur »

    “elector” means a person who

    • (a) is registered on a Band List,

    • (b) is of the full age of eighteen years, and

    • (c) is not disqualified from voting at band elections;

    “estate”

    « biens »

    “estate” includes real and personal property and any interest in land;

    “Indian”

    « Indien »

    “Indian” means a person who pursuant to this Act is registered as an Indian or is entitled to be registered as an Indian;

    “Indian moneys”

    « argent des Indiens »

    “Indian moneys” means all moneys collected, received or held by Her Majesty for the use and benefit of Indians or bands;

    “Indian Register”

    « registre des Indiens »

    “Indian Register” means the register of persons that is maintained under section 5;

    “intoxicant”

    « boisson alcoolisée »

    “intoxicant” includes alcohol, alcoholic, spirituous, vinous, fermented malt or other intoxicating liquor or combination of liquors and mixed liquor a part of which is spirituous, vinous, fermented or otherwise intoxicating and all drinks, drinkable liquids, preparations or mixtures capable of human consumption that are intoxicating;

    “member of a band”

    « membre d’une bande »

    “member of a band” means a person whose name appears on a Band List or who is entitled to have his name appear on a Band List;

    “mentally incompetent Indian”

    « Indien mentalement incapable »

    “mentally incompetent Indian” means an Indian who, pursuant to the laws of the province in which he resides, has been found to be mentally defective or incompetent for the purposes of any laws of that province providing for the administration of estates of mentally defective or incompetent persons;

    “Minister”

    « ministre »

    “Minister” means the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development;

    “registered”

    « inscrit »

    “registered” means registered as an Indian in the Indian Register;

    “Registrar”

    « registraire »

    “Registrar” means the officer in the Department who is in charge of the Indian Register and the Band Lists maintained in the Department;

    “reserve”

    « réserve »

    “reserve”

    • (a) means a tract of land, the legal title to which is vested in Her Majesty, that has been set apart by Her Majesty for the use and benefit of a band, and

    • (b) except in subsection 18(2), sections 20 to 25, 28, 36 to 38, 42, 44, 46, 48 to 51, 58 to 60 and the regulations made under any of those provisions, includes designated lands;

    “superintendent”

    « surintendant »

    “superintendent” includes a commissioner, regional supervisor, Indian superintendent, assistant Indian superintendent and any other person declared by the Minister to be a superintendent for the purposes of this Act, and with reference to a band or a reserve, means the superintendent for that band or reserve;

    “surrendered lands”

    « terres cédées »

    “surrendered lands” means a reserve or part of a reserve or any interest therein, the legal title to which remains vested in Her Majesty, that has been released or surrendered by the band for whose use and benefit it was set apart;

    “survivor”

    « survivant »

    “survivor”, in relation to a deceased individual, means their surviving spouse or common-law partner.

  • Marginal note:Definition of "band"

    (2) The expression “band”, with reference to a reserve or surrendered lands, means the band for whose use and benefit the reserve or the surrendered lands were set apart.

  • Marginal note:Exercise of powers conferred on band or council

    (3) Unless the context otherwise requires or this Act otherwise provides,

    • (a) a power conferred on a band shall be deemed not to be exercised unless it is exercised pursuant to the consent of a majority of the electors of the band; and

    • (b) a power conferred on the council of a band shall be deemed not to be exercised unless it is exercised pursuant to the consent of a majority of the councillors of the band present at a meeting of the council duly convened.

  • R.S., 1985, c. I-5, s. 2;
  • R.S., 1985, c. 32 (1st Supp.), s. 1, c. 17 (4th Supp.), s. 1;
  • 2000, c. 12, s. 148.