Ontario's Bill 132 amends the Pension Benefits Act (Ontario) (“Act”). Based on amendments to the Act, Sun Life has made the following decisions.

Electronic communications

Bill 132 now allows, but doesn’t require, electronic communication for documents the Act requires the plan administrator to transmit to plan members. At this time, Sun Life isn’t making any changes to its method of communication. 

Waiver of biennial statements for missing former or retired members

Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) has recently released a guidance document on the application for a waiver of biennial statements. The industry is waiting for FSRA’s consolidation of the consultation comments on the document. This may bring additional changes and affect our current process. In the meantime, we've made changes to our current process to align with the amendments to the Act. Bill 132 introduced these amendments. These updates are described below. You’ll see them in the next Member Data Verification quarterly email sent out in November.

What are the changes?

We’ve updated the Member Data Verification Report and the Summary of Sun Life’s process for locating missing former and retired members based on the guidance document, as released. They now include the following information for plans that have members qualifying for the waiver:

  • the value of the missing member’s account,
  • the search methods used by the plan administrator, as performed by Sun Life, to locate the missing member, and
  • the costs related to these searches and any future searches.

The Member Data Verification Report has also been updated to include three new jurisdictions (Federal, Alberta and New Brunswick). These jurisdictions, together with the signatories of the previous version of the Agreement Respecting Multi-Jurisdictional Pension Plans (MJPPA) (British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, and Saskatchewan), have signed the 2020 MJPPA. MJPPA provides guidance on which jurisdiction's pension legislation applies to multi-jurisdictional plans, including biennial statement requirements.

The quarterly email instructions will now contain additional information for administrator responsibilities, if they file a waiver for a member(s). It will also include instructions on how to file for the waiver.

For more information, please contact your Sun Life Group Retirement Services Representative.