September 13, 2010
As Ontario’s puts forward a second wave of pension reforms, tougher regulations on pension funding will have implications for the work of in-house legal teams as they review agreements and ensure compliance.
The new proposals recently released by the Ontario government, which are part of the province’s larger pension reform framework, will affect the work of legal teams at Ontario companies, says Mitch Frazer.
Ontario’s government is looking to tighten pension funding rules for companies, requiring sustainable funding of promised benefits and tougher funding standards for benefit improvements. The province also wants to clarify pension surplus rules and provide a dispute-resolution process to allow members, retirees and sponsors to reach agreements on how surplus should be shared.
"While we are still awaiting more detail on these proposals in the form of legislation and regulations, legal counsel should consider reviewing pension plan texts, funding agreements, and investments policies — both to ensure compliance with some of the new rules, and to take advantages of some of the changes with respect to use of surplus and plan investments," says Mitch.
This article was originally published on the Canadian Lawyer website.