Jordan Fremont comments in Benefits Canada on how the Financial Services Regulatory Authority is giving late-filing pension plans a “one-time” opportunity to avoid administrative monetary penalties.
Jordan Fremont, a partner and pensions lawyer at Bennett Jones LLP, says the principles-based approach is particularly apt to late filings. “There are always people who fail to fulfill their obligations,” he says. “But many do so largely through inadvertence.”
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The regulator also emphasized that administrative monetary penalties will continue to be only part of the principles-based approach. “FSRA will also utilize other means to achieve the desired regulatory outcomes, namely ensuring that plans meet their filing requirements and demonstrate good administration and plan governance,” it noted.
With that being said, resort to AMPs should increase after Oct. 31. “Having given late filers an opportunity to avoid sanctions with the safe harbour, I see the FSRA stepping up enforcement and imposing more AMPs,” says Fremont.