Technical Advisory Committee for Missing Members in the Pension Sector 

1. Introduction

These Terms of Reference are intended to inform the creation of the identified technical advisory committee. Technical advisory committees are an important part of FSRA’s stakeholder engagement process, assisting FSRA in developing better processes, guidance and approaches to its regulation of the pension sector.

FSRA’s stakeholder engagement process enables two way dialogue and understanding. We want our stakeholders to be informed of FSRA activities and to provide timely advice and feedback. We may also seek to identify and discuss emerging issues and external developments in the marketplace.

Responsibilities of technical advisory committee members include:

  • reviewing background material in preparation for meetings and attending meetings;
  • providing advice, proposals and feedback to FSRA and freely expressing points of views;
  • using best efforts to, where possible, develop consensus; and
  • providing feedback to FSRA on the functioning of the committee.

2. Mandate of the Technical Advisory Committee

We are establishing FSRA’s Technical Advisory Committee for Missing Members in the Pension Sector (the Advisory Committee) as an ad hoc, special purpose committee. This Advisory Committee will look at ways to better:

  • ensure plan members remain connected with their pensions;
  • promote good plan administration;
  • reduce administrative burden for plan sponsors; and
  • ensure efficient management of pension plans, including facilitating transactions that naturally occur over the evolution of a plan such as asset transfers and plan wind ups.

In particular, the Advisory Committee will assess:

  • the genesis, nature and magnitude of the problem in different types of plans, including: defined benefit (DB) single employer pension plans (SEPPs); defined contribution (DC) SEPPs, multi-employer pension plans (MEPPs); jointly sponsored pension plans (JSPPs) etc.;
  • the extent to which plan design, nature of employment, mobility of workforce, industry process and administrative practices contribute to members becoming disconnected from their pensions;
  • the effectiveness of existing practices to locate missing members, including a review of the policies adopted by the Financial Services Commission of Ontario and by the Canadian Association of Pension Supervisory Authorities;
  • the practices and approaches in other jurisdictions within and outside of Canada (to develop a range of potential alternatives and models to evaluate and consider);
  • the role and responsibilities of plan sponsors, administrative agents, service providers, members, regulators and government to ensure plan members remain connected with their pensions;
  • the impact of the current legislative framework, for example, biennial statement requirements for deferred and retired members; and
  • finally, defining what success looks like and how success will be measured.

Advisory Committee members are expected to comment on their experience to date, identify issues and develop proposals. The Advisory Committee would benefit from any data giving insight into the magnitude of the “missing member” problem today; Advisory Committee members are encouraged to provide the committee with any relevant data they may be able to make available.

3. Nomination and Appointment of Advisory Committee Members 

Appointments will be made through an open nomination process posted online. Selections will be made by FSRA, based in part upon the experience of the individuals who are put forward, the component of the pension industry that they represent and other factors that FSRA may determine are relevant. This Advisory Committee will have a target membership of 10 – 14 members (not including FSRA and MOF participants). FSRA can choose to add or remove any member of the Advisory Committee at any time.

4. Qualifications of Members of the Advisory Committee

Nominees to the Advisory Committee should be senior members of their respective organization or profession who can represent their position on relevant issues. Organizations cannot have more than one representative as a member of any one Advisory Committee.

Candidates to participate on this Advisory Committee must have significant experience dealing with the issue of missing members in the pension industry and should be representative of one or more of the following pension industry categories:

  • Union representatives;
  • Representatives of plan members, former members or retired members;
  • Representatives of MEPP administrators;
  • Representatives of SEPP administrators;
  • Representatives of JSPP administrators;
  • Representatives of third-party DB plan administrators;
  • Representatives of third-party DC plan administrators;
  • Pension lawyers;
  • Pension consultants; and
  • Representatives from life insurance companies.

FSRA will be represented on the Advisory Committee by its Executive Vice President, Pensions or her delegate and by other identified FSRA staff members. The Executive Vice President, Pensions or her delegate will be the Chair of the Advisory Committee. One or more representatives of the Ministry of Finance will also be invited to join this Advisory Committee.

5. Public Process, Input form Others and Disclosure Issues

The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.F.31, as amended, will generally apply to information provided to the Advisory Committee and to material prepared by or for the Advisory Committee.

Members of the Advisory Committee are permitted to obtain assistance from co-workers or industry collaborators. However, until the Advisory Committee’s mandate is complete, Advisory Committee members and those that assist them are requested to maintain confidentiality (with the exception of information made public by FSRA). Following completion of the Advisory Committee’s mandate, an Advisory Committee member may communicate his or her views concerning the work of the Advisory Committee.

6. Meetings, Agendas and Deliverables

We expect the Advisory Committee will participate in 5 meetings; these are tentatively scheduled to begin early in September. If it is determined that a meeting is not required or must be re-scheduled, members will be notified in advance. The Chair may call additional meetings as required.

Advisory Committee members may be asked to prepare material for consideration by the Advisory Committee.

FSRA shall endeavour to provide meeting agendas and related materials at least one week in advance of each regular meeting. FSRA shall prepare a summary of each meeting and will distribute it, including any accompanying written submissions, to Advisory Committee members, typically within three weeks following a meeting. FSRA also intends to publish a high-level summary of the Advisory Committee’s work on FSRA’s website within approximately 3 weeks of each meeting.   

7. Available in French upon request.