Would you like to be a Member of a Pipeline Arbitration Committee or a Negotiator?

Applications for future cases across Canada are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Pipelines are a vital part of Canada’s energy infrastructure and play an important role in the day-to-day lives of Canadians. Arbitration Committees and Negotiators offer a service to landowners and pipeline companies who have been unable to reach compensation agreements for land acquisition or for damages, in accordance with the National Energy Board Act. They are appointed by the Minister of Natural Resources and function independently of the Minister and Natural Resources Canada.

The Pipeline Arbitration Secretariat, comprised of staff at Natural Resources Canada, acts as a liaison to these parties and is responsible for the administrative aspects of these services (contact with court reporting service provider, processing of invoices and correspondence and information management).

Serving on a Pipeline Arbitration Committee…

Arbitration Committees are quasi-judicial and comprised of at least three members, one of whom is appointed as Chair. Arbitration Committees are responsible for all aspects of hearings (scheduling, evidence collection, serving notices), drafting of decisions and other proceedings. Proceedings are formal - transcripts are kept (NRCan has a court reporting service on contract and makes arrangements), each side must produce evidence and witnesses can be called on/subpoenaed and cross-examined.

Once they issue a decision and serve this decision on both parties, records are sent to NRCan for filing, in the event of an appeal. Committee decisions are enforceable in the same manner as a Federal Court decision, and can be appealed by either party to the Federal Court (Trial Division).

Arbitration proceedings are legal in nature and require the interpretation of legislation. Decisions are frequently based on previous judgments that have been appealed.

Serving as a Negotiator…

Negotiators work informally to resolve conflicts and work to bring parties to an agreement. They do not issue a decision, they are not bound to have parties reach a decision and there is no requirement to provide a copy of the decision to PAS or the Minister. They may choose to have discussions with each party separately or bring them together - the proceedings are at their discretion. These proceedings do not require any transcripts or reporting and are also done without prejudice to future proceedings, meaning that willingness of either party to agree to certain terms during negotiations cannot be held against them at future proceedings.

Under the NEB Act, 60 days after the commencement of discussions the Negotiator must report to the Minister on the outcome or progress to date. This is the only reporting requirement related with this process.

The Screening Process

Candidates who are being considered for current cases will be contacted by the Pipeline Arbitration Secretariat to discuss their availability and interest to act as a negotiator or a member of an arbitration committee. Subsequently, candidates will be asked to complete a Conflict of Interest questionnaire which includes details related to the specific case they are being considered for.

Candidates who are selected will be notified of their appointment by the Minister of Natural Resources by registered letter. They will then receive a package from the PAS including administrative information.

Position Information


Arbitration Committee members and Negotiators must be able to accurately interpret the National Energy Board Act, and have experience in mediation, litigation and/or assessing damages. While the bulk of appointees are lawyers, being a lawyer is not an essential requirement.


Applications for future cases across Canada are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Requests for Arbitration and Negotiation are received from various locations across Canada. An inventory resulting from this process will be compiled and may be used to fill current and future vacancies. Applications will be retained for consideration for two years following the date of receipt.

Schedule/Time Commitment

Hours vary and are generally quite flexible.  Arbitration Committee hearing dates and Committee activities are set by the Committee and are usually agreed upon by all parties involved. Negotiation is more informal and activities are conducted at the discretion of the Negotiator.

Average cases require 5-7 days of work on the part of each Arbitration Committees member and Negotiator spread out over the course of 1-3 years, depending on the situation.

Appointments are made on a case-by-case basis. Arbitration Committees and Negotiators may be called on to resolve more than one dispute, if they are willing.

Closing Dates

Resumes for future cases across Canada are accepted on an ongoing basis. Please feel free to send us your resume if you are interested.


Rates of pay are set by an Order in Council, please contact the Secretariat to find out the current rate. The current rate is based on a 7.5 hour day, which can be billed at an hourly rate in increments of 0.25 hours. Reimbursement for travel expenses, when required, is based on the National Joint Council Travel Directive.

Would you like to know more?

To speak to someone about acting as a negotiator or arbitration committee member, or to find out more about our services, please contact us as follows:

Phone: 343-292-6216
Fax: 613-992-0614
E-mail: PAS-SAP@NRCan-RNCan.gc.ca
Web site: www.pas.nrcan.gc.ca

Natural Resources Canada
Pipeline Arbitration Secretariat
580 Booth Street, 17th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0E4