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FSRA publishes final Guidance on Supervisory Approach to Defined Benefit Asset Transfers

The Financial Service Regulatory Authority (FSRA) published final Guidance today describing how it will exercise its discretion and may provide consent to an asset transfer under the Pension Benefits Act (PBA). The Guidance is in response to the sector’s request that FSRA focuses on asset transfers as a key priority to improve regulatory efficiency and effectiveness.

The final Guidance: Supervisory Approach to Defined Benefit Asset Transfers under the PBA reflects some of the feedback received from the recent public consultation.

The final Guidance:

  • provides plan administrators, sponsors and members with increased predictability and transparency, 
  • protects the rights of plan members and
  • supports member-focused communications, enabling members to better understand the impact of the transaction on their past and future benefits.

FSRA has also finalized its process for providing its consent to compliant asset transfer applications. Plans will be responsible for providing early communications to their members to allow concerns to be raised with FSRA in a timely manner.  When providing consent to an asset transfer transaction, FSRA will issue a letter of consent in most cases, rather than issuing a Notice of Intended Decision (NOID) followed by an order/consent. The 10-day notice period announced on October 22, 2020 will no longer be required.  For more information on this change in regulatory approval process and supporting rationale, please visit: FSRA’s Consent to SEPP-to-JSPP Transactions under sections 80.4 and 81.0.1 of the Pension Benefits Act.

FSRA is continuing to work with those we regulate to ensure financial safety, fairness and choice for consumers and members. Learn more at www.fsrao.ca

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