When the Regulator Comes Knocking: Are you Ready?

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) is responsible for regulating pensions registered in Ontario. FSCO periodically conducts examinations to review pension plans’ compliance with the requirements of the Pension Benefits Act (Ontario) and associated regulations. Proteus is a pension consultant providing governance and investment consulting services to pension plans in Canada. Proteus builds and maintains compliance structures that easily meet FSCO examination requirements. The subset of Proteus clients who have undergone FSCO examinations range from employers with less than 100 staff to corporations with more than 7,000 employees.

To get a sense of what FSCO is looking for, we have reproduced below six of 22 actual requests by FSCO at a client’s on-site pension examination. In the event of a FSCO examination, how prepared would your organization be?

Would you be ready to provide the regulator the following?

1. Copies of Minutes of any meetings held by the Pension Committee, Board of Trustees, Board of Directors, or other agency which has authority to make amendments to the [pension plan] during the last two years. Are prior copies available for examination?

2. Copies of your pension plan Policies and Procedures manual including, but not limited to: Written procedures for ensuring accuracy of employers and/or members contributions; written procedures for ensuring accuracy of members’ data used in the calculation of benefits; and written procedures for the collection of any contribution arrears.Written procedures for pension records retention and written procedures for selecting a Third Party Administration or fund custodian.

3. Copy of any documented process outlining the criteria for selecting service providers.

4. Copy of Statement of Investment Policies and Procedures (SIP&P). Do you have proof it has been reviewed annually?

5. Investment Fund Performance Reports and Letter of Certification (certification of in compliance with SIP&P and Federal Investment Rules, generally issued quarterly) in the last two years.

6. Copy of any documented process for selecting investment funds and ongoing review of investment funds, and providing investment options to the DC members.

Would you be prepared?

To better understand where you stand and the steps your organization would need to undertake, or to inquire about our governance consulting services, please contact Gord Lewis.

416-421-3557 x 212 glewis@proteusperformance.com