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Royal Trust Aboriginal Services

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Trust and Investment Services

Many land claim settlements won by First Nations are in the millions of dollars, and Aboriginal communities are looking for ways to preserve and protect the money for future generations.

Royal Trust, serving Canadians since 1899, was the first major financial institutions to create a division solely dedicated to meeting the needs of First Nations' claim settlements. Since 1990, our Royal Trust Aboriginal Services Group has been monitoring current claim issues to ensure that our clients get the maximum benefit from their settlement.

To learn more about Trusts, try our Frequently Asked Questions.

Preserving and Protecting Settlements

A settlement presents both an opportunity to generate income for the community and a challenge to administer the settlement in a way that provides the greatest long-term benefit to the First Nation.

Negotiating settlements can take decades. When a community is successful in receiving its rightful compensation, the first step is to develop a system to ensure the money is always used for its intended purposes and to prevent future misunderstandings and conflict.


The Importance of Professional Advice and Assistance

Operating and administering a settlement can be a difficult and complex job. First Nation clients choose to work with Royal Trust for our experience and our permanence in the field of First Nation settlements.

Experience - Royal Trust's extensive experience in handling large assets and dealing with difficult government relations, as well as our expertise in interpreting legal documents, has proven to be helpful to our First Nation clients.

Permanence - Settlements are intended to last for generations. While First Nation Councils and administrators may change, Royal Trust will always be there, providing the continuity necessary to ensure the settlement money and systems are effectively managed for the benefit of the community in coming years.


Putting Settlement Money into a Trust

A trust is a powerful tool for a First Nation, since a trust ensures that settlement money received today is protected and preserved for the use of existing and future community members.

Placing settlement money into a trust ensures that the money is used for its intended purpose because the terms under which the trust will operate are set out in the trust document. Since the trust document is a legal document, its terms cannot be arbitrarily changed by future administrations. The trust also relieves the Band Administration of any difficulties due to competing ideas within the First Nation as to the use of the settlement money.

Using a trust also provides a means of accountability for First Nations communities. Trusts are protected from improper use of the funds because the trustees (the persons who are responsible for the trust) must disclose information regarding the management of the trust through audits, reports and annual public meetings.

Placing settlement money into a trust provides your First Nation with access to professional administration of the trust itself and to professional investment advice. By using professional advice and assistance the benefits derived from the trust can be multiplied, and the settlement money can be wisely invested to meet the needs of the First Nation.


Investment Advice

The investment needs of a First Nation are complex and must consider the entire community's well-being. At Royal Trust, we focus on preserving and growing your settlement over the long term to help meet the needs of your Nation. We are aware of the taxation issues facing First Nations, and we work towards developing solutions that can be of the greatest benefit to you. We are guided by the individual circumstances, investment return requirements and attitude toward risk of your First Nation.

Royal Trust works closely with you, often right in your community, to help make a better future for you and your family.


Administrative Assistance

Transacting investment trades, collecting investment income, distributing funds to the community, preparation of reports, and general record maintenance can be expediently handled by our team of professionals.

Whether you need investment advice now or in the future, Royal Trust can help you administer the settlement money of your community.


Corporate Trustees

In order to preserve and protect settlement money for future generations, many First Nations have chosen to create a trust. Where a First Nation wishes to have an outside third party share in the responsibility of the trust administration, Royal Trust can assist by providing investment, administrative, and reporting services as required.



Royal Trust can assist community members that will be involved in managing the settlement by providing workshops and training seminars customized to meet the specific needs of your First Nation. Seminars on understanding the details of your settlement or trust, understanding investments and taxation issues, how trusts work, or the roles and responsibilities of trustees are common topics.


The Royal Trust Aboriginal Services Team

Aboriginal Services Group
Suite 700, 335 8th Ave. SW
Calgary, Alberta T2P 1C9

Aboriginal Services Group
Suite 900, 220 Portage Ave.
Winnipeg, Manitoba, R3C 0A5

Aboriginal Services Group
Suite 502, 707 Fort St.
Victoria, British Columbia, V8W 3G3

For additional information contact us:

Aboriginal Services Group
Toll Free: 1-800-573-4797