Canada: Latest Key Developments And Issues Affecting The Canadian Insurance Industry

The Insurance Group at Stikeman Elliott notes the following recent developments on some of the legislative changes, court cases, and regulatory initiatives expected to have a significant impact on the Canadian insurance industry over the next year.

1. Insurance Companies Act (Canada) Part XIII Amendments

  • In a letter to the industry dated August 15, OSFI advised that, upon the coming into force of the amendments in January 2009, there would be a rebuttable presumption that all risks reported on the books of a foreign branch at that time have been insured in Canada and will therefore be subject to Part XIII requirements, unless the foreign insurer satisfies OSFI otherwise.
    • The letter is available at this link.
    • In September, OSFI also issued an Advisory on the insurance in Canada of risks.
    • This was followed shortly thereafter by a Ruling on the same topic in respect of certain types of insurance.

2. Quebec Regulations

  • On August 30, the updated "Regulation respecting Information to be Provided to Consumers" came into force
  • On the same date, the "Regulation Respecting Titles Similar to the Title of Financial Planner" also came into force
  • WEB LINK: both regulations are available on the AMF's website.

3. New AMF Guideline on Transferring a P&C Portfolio Between Brokers

  • The AMF has yet to issue either a guideline for the industry or a communication to its employees regarding the transfer of a property & casualty portfolio from one market intermediary to another, although that continues to be the AMF's intention

4. British Columbia Launches Consultation on its Insurance Legislation

  • British Columbia's Finance Department continues to review submissions received in response to its consultation paper released this past April on proposed amendments to its Insurance Act
  • WEB LINK: the consultation paper is available at this link.

5. Alberta's Insurance Amendment Act, 2007

  • Alberta similarly continues to review submissions received in response to Alberta Finance's release in June of Bill 42, Insurance Amendment Act, 2007
  • A bill is to be tabled in the Spring 2008 session of the legislature; changes expected to be implemented 6-12 months after bill is passed

6. Amendments to Manitoba's Insurance Act

  • Bill 11 was introduced and went through first reading on November 30, 2006, but died on the order paper in April when a provincial election was called for May
  • Subsequently, the bill was reintroduced as Bill 7, The Insurance Amendment Act and went to first reading on October 9 and second reading on October 18
  • WEBLINK: the full text of the bill is available at this link.

7. OSFI Guideline E-17 - Assessments of Responsible Persons by FREs

  • This proposed new guideline was released this past spring in draft form for consultation and industry comment
  • WEB LINK: the draft guideline is available on OSFI's website.

8. AML/ATF Regulations

  • As part of Bill C-25, new regulations to the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (Canada) will come into force in June 2008
  • WEB LINK: the full text of the amended regulations is available at this link.

9. Supreme Court of Canada's Causation Rulings

  • In two companion cases released by the Supreme Court of Canada on October 19, 2007, the Court unanimously reaffirmed the requirement for a clear "unbroken chain" of causation in order to allow recovery in tort cases
  • WEB LINKS: the full text of the decisions are available on-line as follows:
  • Stikeman Elliott acted for the intervener, the Insurance Bureau of Canada, in both cases. These decisions will be discussed in detail in separate Stikeman Elliott Insurance Law Updates, to be circulated shortly.
  • The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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