Effective July 1, 2011, the administration of Ontario and Quebec registered pension plans with members in both jurisdictions is subject to the Canadian Association of Pension Supervisory Authorities Agreement Respecting Multi-Jurisdictional Pension Plans (the Agreement).
The Agreement sets out a framework for the regulation and administration of multi-jurisdictional pension plans (MJPP), including:
- The rules of the jurisdiction of the Major Authority (i.e., the jurisdiction with the plurality of active plan members) will apply to a series of matters that affect the MJPP as a whole and are listed in a schedule to the Agreement (e.g., plan administrator duties, investment and plan registration).
- The rules of the jurisdiction of each Minor Authority will apply to applicable members in relation to matters that are not contained in the schedule (e.g., vesting, locking-in and surplus distribution).
- The “final location” method will be used to determine benefit entitlements (i.e., a member’s pension benefits will be governed by the laws of the jurisdiction where he or she terminates employment or retires under the plan).
The Agreement also includes specific rules related to plan funding, amendments, asset transfers, and plan wind-ups.
For a more detailed discussion of the Agreement and its implications for Ontario and Quebec MJPPs, see the Osler Update by Stephanie Kauffman and Julien Ranger-Musiol.