The Canada Revenue Agency's (CRA) Registered Plans
Directorate (RPD) recently made two announcements that plan
sponsors and administrators should be aware of: (i) a project to
assess the compliance of DB plans; and (ii) a clarification of the
requirements for applications to register a pension plan.
Project to Assess Compliance of DB Plans
The RPD announced that it will be will be conducting a
project to validate its "risk criteria" for registered
pension plans (RPP).
While a previous review, in 2012, focused on defined
contribution plans, the current project will focus on defined
benefit (DB) plans.
In the coming months, the RPD will review all of the documents
for a sample of DB pension plans to determine whether they comply
with the requirements of the Income Tax Act (ITA) and Regulations
and what types of non-compliance are most common. If the plan
documents do not comply with the ITA and Regulations, the RPD has
indicated that it will work with the plan administrator "to
find the best way to bring the plan into compliance".
Applications for Registering Pension Plans
On October 11, 2013, the RPD posted a
Newsletter reaffirming that it will not accept incomplete
applications for RPPs. The Newsletter lists the following documents
as being required for an application to be considered complete:
an application form (i.e., Form T510 – Application to
Register a Pension Plan, signed by the plan administrator);
certified copies of the plan text;
certified copies of the funding documents;
certified copies of any agreements relating to the plan;
certified copies of all resolutions and by-laws relating to the
The Newsletter specifies what constitutes an "acceptable
certified copy" (i.e., a signed original document or a copy
that contains an original signature or initials from the plan
administrator, or the company seal, certifying that the document is
a true copy of the original). However, the Newsletter goes on to
note that since May 2, 2005, the CRA has been accepting photocopies
of the signed documents listed above, but if photocopies are
submitted, plan administrators must provide the original documents
to the CRA upon request.
While applications containing all the required documents will be
deemed registered within 60 days, the application for registration
will still be reviewed to ensure that the plan text complies with
the requirements of the ITA and the Regulations.
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guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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