Jack Williams
Jack Williams
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Client Stories

Jack Williams has a general law practice focusing on commercial law, corporate law, labour and employment, mines and minerals and general civil litigation, including an emphasis on Aboriginal law in Northwest Territories and the Nunavut jurisdictions. Jack has many years of experience - including land-claim management work before entering law school -helping independent business clients and commercial lenders in commercial fundings, joint ventures, incorporations, corporate reorganizations, mine and mineral remediation and the sale and purchase of business assets.

"I was born and raised in the Northwest Territories. So, I have a practical, first-hand understanding of the trials and tribulations of conducting business in the North." Some of the specialty areas on which Jack advises include aviation business issues as well as surface and sub-surface mining, mineral rights and reserves and remediation. Jack regularly provides strategic business advice to Indigenous development corporations, land claimant groups and other closely-held, small business entities in both the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.

A lot of Jack's attention is focused on helping Indigenous businesses with governance, restructuring and refinancing and on making business assets more attractive to bidders and buyers. "I'm often asked to help present and evaluate business opportunities and to advance Indigenous interests."

His general litigation experience includes defense work on behalf of various levels of government and other corporate entities, comprising various insurers, professional organizations and corporations.

Value to Clients

"There aren't many in the North with my skill set and track record with sophisticated legal and business issues. That means that I tend to have a lower learning curve on issues as they arise."

Outside the Office

"I live close to the water. So, naturally I am a boater in summer and snowmobile cabin dweller in winter. I enjoy being out on the land."

Canadian Bar Insurance Association (CBIA), Board of Directors
NWT Director
2011 - Present
Law Society of Northwest Territories
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Aboriginal Law Section  
Law Society of Nunavut
Law Society of Alberta
Member (Inactive)
American Bar Association
Associate Member
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Law Practice Management Section
Canadian Bar Association, Law Practice Management and Technology Section
Executive Member
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Environmental Law Section  
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Branch Executive/Council
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Branch Executive/Council
Canadian Bar Association Northwest Territories, Aboriginal Law Section  
"Senior Statesperson" Northern Canada and Arctic, General Business Law
Chambers and Partners
2019 - 2021
Law Society of Northwest Territories
Insurance Committee Member
2012 - Present
Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce
1991 - Present
Inuvialuit Arbitration Board, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
Ministerial Appointed Member
1999 - Present
Law Society of Northwest Territories
Finance Committee Member
2012 - 2015
NWT Territorial Court
Judicial Advisory Committee (Law Society Appointed)
2009 - 2011
Northern Aboriginal Business Association
Founding Director
2007 - 2010
NWT Chamber of Commerce
2008 - 2010
Advisory Committee on NWT Judicial Appointments - Justice Canada
2001 - 2004
Advisory Committee on NWT Judicial Appointments - Justice Canada
Ministerial Appointed Member
1999 - 2004
Yellowknife Metis Development Corporation
Founding Chair &  Member
1982 - 1994
Denendeh Conservation Board, Government of the NWT
1991 - 1992
NWT Community Mobilization and Job Development Strategy
1995 - 1996
Gordon v. Aklavik (Hamlet), 1995 CanLII 3412 (NWT SC)
943639 NWT Ltd. v. Dominion of Canada General Insurance, 2012 NWTSC 12, Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories

Getting to the heart of a matter

  • A privately-held Indigenous development corporation in Western Canada wasn't happy with a complex joint venture into which it had entered with a US conglomerate and wanted formal resolution. "So, I talked with both sides and assessed the work flow and the relationship issues. In collaboration with our client, I figured out a way for the minority shareholder to sell their shares and part with the company amicably." Based on a valuation of the joint venture, the parties negotiated and agreed to split up the assets. "My clients took its share of the assets and moved forward." The file was essentially an issue of relationship management.

Understanding our client's business

  • A multi-million dollar construction contractor was in distress when it sought Jack Williams's help. "It was over budget on several major jobs in Western Canada." As a team, Jack and his client assessed what to fix and how to proceed. That included restructuring a major contract, selling redundant assets and restructuring bank terms and security. "In addition, the client switched banks, renegotiated terms on other contracts, strengthened its governance and put financial management controls in place."
University of Victoria, 1989, Bachelor of Laws
University of Calgary, 1984, Bachelor of Commerce
Northwest Territories,1990