Richard Jones is a talented litigator focused on corporate and commercial matters, municipal law and environmental law. With extensive experience advising clients in the oil and gas and agribusiness sectors, he provides counsel on land development issues, irrigation, and water rights.

As part of his environmental practice, Richard advises on matters relating to water conveyance, water allocation, water licence amendment and transfer, storm and waste water discharge, contaminated site remediation, and Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act (EPEA) offences. His particular expertise in irrigation and water law makes him one of only a few lawyers in Alberta practising in this area. He also advises clients on a variety of regulatory compliance, and municipal planning and development matters.

Richard provides representation on a range of energy related matters. He also provides strategic advice on business disputes relating to commercial transactions, contract and property rights, non-competition covenants, commercial losses, self-insured claims, director and officer liability, shareholder rights, and prejudgment seizure of assets and production of evidence. Appearing before all levels of court and a variety of administrative boards and tribunals, Richard is also an experienced mediator.

Prior to joining McMillan, Richard practised for over ten years at a boutique litigation practice of which he is a founding partner. He is a frequent writer and speaker on a variety of legal topics involving land development, water and property rights. Richard is a member of the national public affairs firm McMillan Vantage Policy Group.

Representative Matters

  • Northern Sunrise County v. Bank of Nova Scotia, 2019 ABCA 61 (Alta. C.A.), leave denied SCC, 2019 CarswellAlta 979 – the priority of municipal linear property taxes against the assets of an insolvent company
  • BullRun Capital Inc. v GrowMax Resources Corp, 2019 CarswellAlta 326 (Alta. Q.B.) – the effect of the adoption of an advance notice bylaw by directors to thwart a takeover
  • Erik v McDonald, 2019 ABCA 217 (Alta. C.A.) – the extent of riparian rights to include a right of recreational use in a watercourse adjoining private lands
  • Bow River Irrigation District v Alberta (Designated Director Environment and Parks, 2018 ABCA 371 (Alta. C.A.) – judicial review of the allocation by the Director of water reserved by the Crown for irrigation use by Alberta’s irrigation districts
  • City of Chestermere v. Rocky View County, 2016 CarswellAlta 696 (Alberta Municipal Government Board) – an intermunicipal dispute arising from the adoption of an area structure plan by a neighbouring municipality and its impacts
  • Water Matters Society of Alberta v Director, South Region, Operations Division, Alberta Environment and Water, 2013 ABQB 44 9 (Alta. Q.B.) – public interest standing before administrative tribunals
  • Community Credit Union Ltd. v Ast, 2007 CarswellAlta 1548 (Alta. C.A.) – interpretation of a restrictive covenant known as a “Russian Doll” clause in a non-competition clause and the disgorgement of profits
  • Chessor v Canadian Pacific Railway, 2004 CarswellAlta 2503 (Alta. Q.B.) – the validity of a CPR easement that had been assigned by statute to an irrigation district that provides a right to flood lands and an option to repurchase in perpetuity
  • Western Irrigation District v Mertz, 2000 ABQB 7 (Alta. Q.B.) – the interpretation of statutory easements granted by statute for the conveyance of water

Speaking Engagements

Canadian Issues in Cross Border M&A Transactions within the Agricultural Industry, AALA Agricultural Law Symposium, Louisville, Kentucky

October 2017

Environmental Law & Regulation for Oil & Gas, Course Co-Leader & Co-Presenter, Federated Press

November 2014

Session Chair – 2014 Water Conference, Alberta Irrigation Projects Association

November 2014

Understanding the Intersection of Water and Land Use Regulations with the South Saskatchewan Regional Plan, Presenter, The Canadian Institute's Environmental Law and Regulation in Alberta Conference, Calgary, AB

June 2014

Environmental and Regulatory Issues Surrounding Pipeline Developments in Western Canada, Co-presenter, Western Oil & Gas Transportation Summit, Calgary, AB

May 2014

Regulatory Investigations: Best Practices Association of Certified Fraud Examiners - 2014 Edmonton Fraud, Prevention Conference, Edmonton, AB

March 2014

Water Licence Amendments under the Alberta Water Act, Bow River Basin Council

March 2012

Environmental Issues in Land Development, The Legal Education Society of Alberta

September 2011

The Legal Effect of the Alberta Land Stewardship Act and Amendments to the Mines and Minerals Act on Landowners, Action Surface Rights Association

March 2011

Consequences of the Alberta Land Stewardship Act on Irrigation Districts, Alberta Irrigation Projects Association

June 2010

The Principle of First In Time, First in Right in Water Allocation, Alberta Irrigation Projects Association

March 2010
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Teaching Engagements

  • Guest instructor, Water and Irrigation Districts, University of Calgary, Faculty of Law (2010, 2016-2018)
  • Instructor, Civil Litigation, Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education (2001 – 2010)

Media Mentions

Directorships & Affiliations

  • Alberta Irrigation Projects Association
  • International Water Association
  • The Law Society of Alberta
  • Calgary Bar Association
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Alberta Civil Trial Lawyers Association
  • American Bar Association
  • American Agricultural Law Association

Education & Admissions

Called to the Alberta bar
Canadian Securities Course
LLBUniversity of Calgary


Insights by Richard Jones (6 Posts)

Featured Insight

Charging Ahead: Alberta and Saskatchewan Joining Forces with Ontario and New Brunswick on Small Modular Reactors

Update on developments in nuclear energy and small modular nuclear reactors in Canada, including the memorandum of understanding that was recently signed.

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May 26, 2021
Featured Insight

New Rules for Alberta’s Local Elections

Discussion of government of Alberta's Bill 29: Local Authorities Election Amendment Act, which came into force September 1, 2020

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Sep 10, 2020
Featured Insight

Bill 31 – Environmental Protection Statutes Amendment Act Passed and In Force – Cutting Red Tape and Returning Discretion to Alberta Environment and Parks

Overview of Alberta's Bill 31- Passed on July 23, 2020: amending statutory definitions of minerals and clarify treatment of silica sand.

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Aug 4, 2020
Featured Insight

The Impact of COVID-19 on Agribusiness – Business and Legal Considerations

In addition to the adverse impact to public health and the public healthcare system, the COVID-19 pandemic is causing severe economic hardship to western Canada.

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Apr 7, 2020
Featured Insight

Defendants Beware: Courts May Be Hesitant to Dismiss Action for Delay even when Plaintiff Is the Major Contributor

Where defendants play even a small part in delaying an action from getting to trial, courts may be hesitant to dismiss a plaintiff's action for delay

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Mar 4, 2020
Featured Insight

Supreme Court of Canada Denies Leave to Appeal in “Virginia Hills” Linear Property Tax Case: Northern Sunrise County, et al. v. Bank of Nova Scotia, et al., 2019 SCC 38587

The Supreme Court has confirmed that the Alberta Municipal Government Act does not grant a municipality a special lien for unpaid linear property taxes.

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Sep 4, 2019