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Canadian Legal and Legislative Update

Wednesday, May 15-Thursday, May 16, 2024

The Westin Nova Scotian,
Halifax, NS

Sessions Include:

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Cross-Country Benefits Update

This session will provide an overview of legislative and case law developments of importance to benefit plans across Canada.

9:45 AM - 10:45 AM

Cross-Country Pensions Update

This session will provide an overview of legislative and case law developments of importance to pensions plans across Canada.

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Key Employment Considerations for the Canadian and Quebec Workforce

  • Dissect the impact of Bill C-13 and the Charter of the French Language, and how they both shape the Canadian employment, pensions and benefits landscape.
  • Understand the employment law, pensions and benefits implications on leaves of absence on under both the common and civil law.
  • Manage pension and benefit entitlements during leaves of absence to avoid allegations of constructive dismissal.

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Medical Assistance in Dying

In recent years, Canada has allowed medical assistance in dying (MAiD) for those with irremediable illnesses causing lasting physical or psychological impairment, even if death isn’t foreseeable. While legislation has been passed to extend MAiD to individuals solely diagnosed with a mental illness, its implementation is delayed. When mental health provisions take effect, questions arise about insurers covering death benefits for depression or PTSD-related deaths. Additionally, there’s uncertainty about employers/worker-injury programs covering death benefits for work-related fatalities.

2:15 PM - 3:15 PM

Navigating the Future: Emerging Trends in Pensions and Benefits in Canada

This engaging session is designed to equip you with a comprehensive understanding of the latest developments, ensuring you stay ahead in the ever-evolving world of employee benefits.

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Balancing Fairness and Sustainability in Pension Plans

As the landscape of pension plans evolves, ensuring fairness and sustainability becomes paramount. This session will educate employers and trustees on emerging challenges to fairness and sustainability for a variety of plan types, including defined benefit plans, negotiated cost plans, and target benefit plans. Special attention will be given to indexation of benefits in the context of high inflation.

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

SMEP and ELHT Tax Rules: Where to From Here?

This session will dissect the implications of the Spring Federal Budget on Employee Benefits, focusing on the Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) Specified Multi-Employer Plan (SMEP) and Employee Life and Health Trusts (ELHT). This session will also explore the changes, challenges, and opportunities arising from the latest budgetary developments, providing you with the knowledge needed to navigate the evolving tax landscape.

9:45 AM - 10:45 AM

Developing a Useful Pension Plan Risk Framework

Examine the essential components of risk management, guided by an introduction to the CAPSA Guidelines. Engage in meaningful discussions around benefits risks and participate in a case study to solidify your understanding and application of these principles.

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Cyber Reality—Don’t Be an Ostrich With Your Head in the Cyber Sand

Cyber risk is a top risk faced by all pension plan administrators. When you are hacked, data can be lost, retiree payroll may be missed, and security of funds may be at issue. When faced with a cyber event, will you have contemporaneous evidence of cyber due diligence? What should be the key elements of your cyber program? What questions should you ask in addressing this key pension plan risk?

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Key Areas of Pension Disputes in 2023/2024

As the pension landscape evolves, understanding the nuances in key areas becomes paramount. The session is designed to address the pressing issues of 2023/2024. Join us for an exploration of the challenges surrounding asset transfers, marital breakdowns, reducing accrued benefits, changing contribution rates for members on LTD, and the unique considerations of an Alberta Pension Plan.

2:15 PM - 3:15 PM

It Is Time to Retire the Concept of Retirement.

Delve into the necessary changes to empower a modernized retirement approach, including a comprehensive examination of the legal landscape. Addressing societal challenges such as ageism and gender inequalities in pensions, this session aims to reshape how we guide members towards a more holistic future by revolutionizing the way we prepare for life beyond traditional working years.

3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Collecting Money Owed to Pension and Benefit Plans—Why and How?

  • Understand the key legal differences between funds owed to trusts, and funds owed to other creditors.
  • Explore the ethical boundaries of collection activities against plan participants.
  • Learn how to build an effective collections program.