Ontario launches new financial services regulator

New regulator assumes regulatory function of FSCO and DICO

Ontario launches new financial services regulator
Steve Randall

There’s a new name in financial services regulation in Ontario – the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario.

FSRA has assumed the regulatory functions of the Financial Services Commission of Ontario and the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario from June 8, 2019.

The new independent, self-funded regulator is intended to reduce regulatory burden as part of the provincial government’s aim to boost business and jobs.

"The Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) of Ontario is a modern and innovative regulator with rule-making authority that promotes strong financial services and pensions sectors while protecting the public interest," said Finance Minister Vic Fedeli. "Its mandate is to be open —open to new ideas, open to business, and open to consumer needs. FSRA has the flexibility to cut red tape, bring products to market quicker and be more responsive to the needs of businesses."

FSRA will regulate financial service providers but excluding securities which remain the domain of the Ontario Securities Commission.

It will regulate Ontario’s insurance sector, pension plans, loan and trust corporations, credit unions and caisses populaires, mortgage brokers and service providers who invoice auto insurers for statutory accident benefit claims.

Title protection for financial services professionals

Among its key objectives, especially in its first year, is to establish title protection for financial planners and financial advisors; along with a reform of auto insurance.

"Our government recognizes that making Ontario open for business means making sure financial services are efficient, responsive to consumers and businesses — FSRA will play a vital role in helping businesses grow while protecting consumers," said Fedeli.

The Ministry of Finance will administer FSCO’s Dispute Resolution Services until June 30, 2020. During the transitional period, all open cases will continue, however no new proceedings will commence. As of July 1, 2020, any remaining cases will be extinguished, with parties able to start a new proceeding with the Licence Appeal Tribunal.