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In the United States, there are over 560 federally recognized Indian tribes and Alaska Native Corporations that possess unique, sovereign rights.  The continuing expansion and diversification of tribal economies requires tribes, their commercial partners, and impacted government parties to secure sophisticated legal counsel.

K&L Gates Indian Law lawyers understand the issues this expansion has raised and have extensive experience handling a wide variety of matters involving tribes and their business partners in Alaska, the Pacific Northwest, Pennsylvania, California, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Washington, D.C. Our lawyers and public policy professionals have advised public and private clients, local governmental agencies, and Indian tribes on how to address and resolve issues involving many areas of Indian law. Our national practice has been recognized in the 2015 U.S. News & World Report-Best Lawyers® survey as “Tier 1” in “Native American Law”.

Our depth and breadth of experience in these areas enable our attorneys to negotiate unique resolutions for often difficult and complex legal problems relating to Indian tribes. Specifically, K&L Gates attorneys have helped clients with disputes, treaty issues, complicated real estate transactions in Indian Country, and Indian property rights outside Indian Country for water rights and access to hunting and fishing sites. We have represented local and regional governments on treaty matters and major litigation, and have represented tribes and other parties on policy matters in Washington, D.C.

Because our experience includes working with both public and private entities, in addition to Indian tribes, we collaborate with many other groups at K&L Gates, including public policy, real estate, healthcare, litigation, tax, banking, intellectual property, and labor and employment.  This interaction has helped us offer a full contingent of services to tribes and to other clients on Indian law matters.

Areas of Practice

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Showing 21-29 of 29 results
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Represented the Spokane Tribe on funding for Lake Roosevelt Management/Enforcement activities through BIA and funding for the Upper Columbia United Tribes (UCUT). 
Helped the Spokane Tribe modify legislation last Congress sponsored by Sen. McCain that would have changed the two-part determination process. We were able to extend the date of the grandfather clause in the bill.
Finance and Transactions
Represented a Native regional corporation in drafting their technology contracts.
Represented nonprofit corporations and a Native regional corporation in acquisitions of office buildings and other real estate for development projects.
Represented developers in connection with transfer of property to a tribe and the development of the property.
Represented the Nature Conservancy on an acquisition of ancient forestlands involving the retention of a conservation easement on tribal lands. 
Water Rights & Resources
Represented the city of Bellingham in a complex tribal, federal, state and local negotiation regarding tribal and other water rights in the Nooksack River basin. Both the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe were parties, and K&L Gates lawyers worked extensively with their lawyers throughout the negotiations. 
Represented the city of Yakima in the Yakima River water rights adjudication. Like the city, the Yakama Nation was a major claimant in the adjudication, requiring substantial negotiations, communication and coordination between our lawyers and counsel for the Nation.
Represented Pierce County in connection with FERC licensing proceedings on the White River Project. The Muckleshoot Tribe and Puyallup Tribe are active in the FERC and related proceedings.