• United States Intervention in Ysleta Del Sur Lawsuit
    On August 29, 2023, the United States moved to intervene in a land claim filed by the Ysleta Del Sur Pueblo against the City of El Paso.  The United States’ motion to intervene is noteworthy for two reasons.  First, the United States seeks to intervene in the Pueblos’ lawsuit in the capacity as the Pueblo’s trustee to protect its right … Read more
  • Everything is Better With Good Government
    Helping Tribes Make Modern Constitutions and Improve Tribal Governing Documents Attorney Jeffrey Nelson from the Firm’s Indian Law group discusses the history of the Mattaponi Tribe in Virginia, as well as their recent election under their newly drafted election code and constitution. He highlights the importance of tribal governance documents written for and with the tribe, by tribal members, and … Read more
  • Derril at Racing and Gaming Conference
    It was an honor and a pleasure to moderate the panel on Indian Tribal digital gaming at the Racing and Gaming Conference in Saratoga, New York last week. Thanks to panelists William Brooks, Michelle Cohen and Daniel Wallach, we had an informative discussion about the challenges facing tribal governmental gaming in the digital age as well as possible pathways forward … Read more
  • mctlaw Advises Tribes About the Department of the Treasury Consultation on the Tax Status of Tribally Chartered Corporations
    On May 15, 2023, the Department of the Treasury announced that it would be holding consultation sessions on the status of tribally chartered corporations. Two consultation meetings were held via conference call in June.  The Department will be receiving written comments until Friday, August 18, 2023.  This is an important opportunity of which all tribes should take advantage. Treasury has … Read more
  • Promising Changes to Native American Housing Law Will Help Families Purchase Homes and Tribes Plan for the Future
    The Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act (NAHASDA) is THE law that funds housing for Native American people through block grants, special loan programs, and other funding sources. It had not been re-authorized since 2013. Last Thursday, July it was re-authorized with a bipartisan vote of 86 to 11—a significant renewal on its own terms, and a double … Read more
  • Breaking Down Waste to Build Up Tribal Business: How Anaerobic Digestion is Creating Jobs and Revenue for Indian Tribes
    It was recently announced that the Tulalip Tribes of Tulalip, WA had entered into a partnership with a local dairy farm to operate a dairy digester that decomposes manure and food waste and turns them into renewable energy that is used to provide energy to about 700 nearby homes.  The digester also produces a high-grade liquid fertilizer that is sold … Read more
  • What the Seminole Sports Betting Court Decision Means for Tribes
    Gaming Today interviewed Indian Law attorney Derril Jordan this week about the recent decision allowing sports betting in Florida statewide on the Seminole Hard Rock app. Jordan is quoted about the outcome saying this ruling provides a “pathway for a state that wants to authorize sports betting, and for tribes that want to be authorized to do sports betting.” Essentially, … Read more
  • The Supreme Court Decision in Arizona v. Navajo Nation
    The Supreme Court recently issued one of its more frightening Indian law decisions in Arizona v. Navajo Nation. The decision holds that the although the Navajo Nation Treaty of 1868 reserved the necessary water to accomplish the purposes of the Nation and the United States in creating the Navajo Reservation, it does not require the United States to take “affirmative … Read more
  • Supreme Court Upholds the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) – Giving Tribes Priority in Adoption of Native American Children
    Today the Supreme Court upheld the Indian Child Welfare Act (“ICWA”) in its 7-2 decision in Brackeen v. Haaland. This case, brought by the State of Texas and individual plaintiffs seeking to adopt Indian children, challenged the constitutionality of the ICWA. The Supreme Court rejected every challenge raised by the plaintiffs either through outright affirmation of the law or by … Read more
  • Online Gaming: How Tribes Can Use a Hub-and-Spoke Gaming Model to Link Reservations, Increase Play, and Reduce Costs
    After the Supreme Court overturned the federal ban on sports wagering in 2018, sports wagering not only exploded in popularity but was also quickly launched into the 21st century with the proliferation of online sportsbooks, particularly mobile app-based sports betting platforms. It is impossible to turn on the TV without being flooded with advertisements for sportsbooks from DraftKings, FanDuel, Caesars, … Read more
  • Minnesota Legalizes Recreational Cannabis
    On May 30 Minnesota became the 23rd State to legalize recreational cannabis. It joins a much smaller list of states that included Tribes in their cannabis regulatory scheme. One perk that Minnesota Tribes will enjoy under this new law (that is not the case in Washington state) is that Tribes can enter into tax agreements to keep certain taxes from … Read more
  • Historic Vote Sees Mattaponi Tribe Adopt First Written Constitution
    The Mattaponi Indian Tribe of Virginia held a groundbreaking election on April 29th, 2023, where voting members unanimously elected their first-ever written constitution, drafted with the assistance of mctlaw attorney Derril Jordan. This landmark election represents a significant step towards the Tribe becoming federally recognized. With 35 years of experience in Indian law, Jordan is a member of the Mattaponi Tribe and … Read more
  • RES 2023 Misuse of Railway Easements in Indian Country
    Going Off the Rails – Misuse of Railway Easements in Indian Country – If You Missed it at RES 2023 If you weren’t able to attend RES 2023, then we’ll bring RES to you. Here’s a recap of our panel discussion “Going Off the Rails – Misuse of Railway Easements in Indian Country,” hosted by mctlaw attorneys Altom Maglio, Derril … Read more
  • Sauk-Suiattle appeal over fishing rights in the Skagit River
    Today, mctlaw appellate attorney Jennifer Maglio appeared before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Seattle on behalf of the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe. She presented oral argument in the appeal of a sub-proceeding in U.S. v. Washington, the well-known treaty fishing rights case in the State of Washington. The Tribe’s appeal concerns whether the Tribe has treaty fishing rights in … Read more
  • Mctlaw Completes Trademark Registration for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians
    mctlaw recently completed the trademark registration for the word “Keetoowah ” on behalf of the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians (UKB). It is now registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. This new trademark comes after mctlaw also helped the UKB register for trademark protections on their tribal seal. Mctlaw attorney Sophie Asher was a key part of … Read more
  • Mctlaw’s Indian Law Practice Group Visits the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Reservation
    In July, mctlaw‘s Indian law practice group attorneys Jeffrey Nelson, Derril Jordan, Sophie Asher, and Kehl Winkle visited the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe, one of the firm’s tribal clients, at the Tribe’s Reservation near Darrington, Washington. After a meeting with members of the Tribal Council, they accompanied Tribal Council member Kevin Lenon into the backcountry to locate several of the Tribe’s … Read more
  • Attorney Derril Jordan Speaks on Ruling on Mobile Sports Wagering in Florida
    Mctlaw Attorney Derril Jordan recently spoke at the National Council of Legislators From Gaming States (NCLGS) conference in Boston, on July 8. He discussed recent court rulings, how they affect the future of Indian gaming for tribes, the implications of the Seminole Tribe of Florida’s compact litigation, and how that impacts tribal and state relations. Mr. Jordan’s remarks were covered by U.S. Bets, which ran an … Read more
  • mctlaw completes the trademark registration for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians’ insignia
    mctlaw recently completed the trademark registration for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians’ insignia, or seal. It is now registered with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The tribal seal is the official emblem of the UKB. The UKB places its seal on almost everything — including official correspondence, flags, T-shirts, tribal government vehicles, and consumer products. By registering … Read more
  • SSIT Sports Wagering Approval
    On June 14, 2022, the Department of the Interior published notice of the Sauk Suiattle Indian Tribe Gaming Compact Amendment that now authorizes the Tribe to operate sports betting. Attorney Kehl VanWinkle authored this amendment and testified before the State Legislature on behalf of our clients, the Sauk Suiattle Indian Tribe. You can review the notice in today’s Federal Register
  • mctlaw Helps Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe Finalize Alcohol Sales MOU
    Kehl Van Winkle of mctlaw just completed a long-standing goal of the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe by finalizing an Alcohol Sales Memorandum of Understanding with the State of Washington.  Alcohol sales have never before been allowed on the Sauk-Suiattle Reservation, which was created in 1984.  But under the terms of the new MOU, the Tribe will be authorized to sell wine … Read more
  • mctlaw Obtains Funding for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Court
    mctlaw recently learned that the funding request our legal team helped submit for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians was approved by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). The BIA is providing the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Court with $237,401 for use in their tribal court program services. That’s $47,401 more than the BIA provided the … Read more
  • Attorney Derril Jordan Joins mctlaw’s Expanding Indian Law Practice
    WASHINGTON, D.C. — (April 2022) – mctlaw announces the addition of attorney Derril Jordan to the Firm’s Washington, D.C. office and the Firm’s growing Indian Law practice. Mr. Jordan comes to mctlaw with nearly 35 years of experience representing tribes as in-house counsel and in private practice. In addition, Mr. Jordan served as a presidential appointee in the Department of … Read more
  • Tribal Leaders Seek Win In Okla. Gambling Pact Challenge
    Source: Law360 Law360 (March 15, 2022, 6:02 PM EDT) — The heads of two Oklahoma tribes have asked a D.C. federal judge to hand them a win in a suit against them and the U.S. Department of the Interior by four other tribes challenging their gambling compacts with the governor, saying the case lacks legal merit. Chief Joe Bunch of … Read more
  • mctlaw nominates Kristie Bradley to be a member of the 2022 class of Native American 40 under 40!   
    mctlaw has the honor of nominating Kristie Bradley, from the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians (UKB), for the 2022 Native American 40 Under 40 award. Kristie is the UKB’s Tribal Court Administrator, and she has shown extraordinary leadership, perseverance, and dedication to her mission to expand the UKB’s Tribal Court, all while dealing with the ongoing challenges of the … Read more
  • Appellate and Indian Law Attorneys File Ninth Circuit Opening Brief on Behalf of Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe’s Treaty Fishing Rights in United States v. Washington 
    The Appellate and Indian Law Groups at mctlaw have filed an Opening Brief before the Ninth Circuit on behalf of the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe of the State of Washington.  The issue on appeal is whether the Sauk-Suiattle have treaty fishing rights in the Skagit River.    The 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott guaranteed all of the tribal signatories the right … Read more
  • Attorneys Join Sauk-Suiattle in Fight Over Gorge Dam
    The Indian law group at mctlaw is excited to join the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe’s ongoing efforts to convince the City of Seattle to modify its 300-foot-high Gorge Dam on the Skagit River to allow salmon passage. The dam has blocked salmon and other migratory fish from traveling upriver to spawn for the last 100 years, even though one of the … Read more
  • Appointment of Sophie Asher for Prosecutions
    Appointment of Attorney Sophie Asher for Prosecutions Congratulations to mctlaw’s Sophie Asher on being appointed as an outside-counsel Assistant Attorney General at the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma. Sophie will now assist the Tribe by prosecuting criminal defendants in UKB Tribal Court, mostly by remote connection from Seattle! AG Appointment of Sophie Asher for Prosecutions – 2021
  • Webinar: A Clearheaded Look at Marijuana as Tribal Enterprise
    RECORDED WEBINAR Cutting Through the Smoke: A Clearheaded Look at Marijuana as Tribal Enterprise Watch Webinar Now: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FuOzfPj5O4w Watch Now
  • Mctlaw Honored to Represent Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe
    Mctlaw is honored to begin its representation of the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe in the State of Washington!  We look forward to working with the Tribe’s leaders and co-counsel on a number of critical matters.  You can learn more about the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe here: www.sauk-suiattle.com
  • mctlaw Welcomes Attorneys Sophie Asher & Kehl Van Winkle
    Attorneys Sophie Asher and Kehl Van Winkle Join mctlaw Mctlaw is pleased to announce the additions of Attorneys Sophie Asher and Kehl Van Winkle, Esq. to the Firm’s Indian Law and Civil Litigation Practice Group. “I’m excited to welcome Sophie Asher and Kehl Van Winkle into our expanding Indian Law practice,” says Managing Partner Altom Maglio. “Their experience in Tribal … Read more

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Content Reviewed by Jeffrey Nelson – Indian Law

Attorney Jeffrey Nelson Headshot

Jeffrey Nelson leads the Firm’s  Indian Law Group, He’s spent  over 20 years of experience working in Washington, DC on Indian law and litigation matters, including as a Senior Attorney at the National Indian Gaming Commission and as an Assistant Solicitor at the Department of Interior. Jeff now represents tribes across the country on Indian gaming and tribal governance matters. He also serves as the Assistant Attorney General for the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma. Jeff earned his law degree at the University of Michigan Law School in 1997 and an LL.M. in Advocacy from Georgetown University Law Center in 1999.

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