Specimen Plan approvals - RSP & RIF

The following comments and checklists will help you comply with the requirements of the Registered Plans Directorate and the Income Tax Act when preparing specimens for Retirement Savings Plans (RSPs) and Retirement Income Funds (RIFs).

Submitting Documents

Include the following information in your covering letter when you submit a new specimen plan or an amendment to an existing plan:

  • Indicate if you are submitting a new specimen or an amendment to an existing specimen. If you are amending an existing specimen, include the specimen plan number (for example, RSP 000-000 or RIF 0000).
  • Identify the type of specimen plan (for example, is it an individual, group general, group specific, or combined individual/group plan).
  • Indicate if the specimen plan is self-directed.
  • Specify if there is an agent involved.

Note: All documents (English and French) must be approved by the Registered Plans Directorate before being printed and marketed.

Application Forms

We may accept combined application forms for RSPs and RIFs. We also may accept electronic applications, also known as on-line fillable forms. For more information, you can contact the Registered Plans Directorate.

Changes to the RSP/RIF Application Form

The following changes to an RSP or RIF application form do not require our approval before the application form is printed and marketed:

a) changing the logo of the fund management company or investment dealer

b) changing the address, telephone number or fax number of the fund management company or investment dealer, or adding an electronic mail address to the application

c) adding or deleting the name of a fund or investment

d) adding or deleting the commission or fee options available to the applicant

e) adding, amending or deleting the particulars of an automatic re-alignment program

f) adding, amending or deleting the particulars of a pre-authorized chequing plan

g) changing the information required in respect of distributor or sales representative

h) adding, amending or deleting the banking information particulars on the application

i) adding, amending or deleting the particulars of an option to obtain a certificate for mutual fund securities for non-registered accounts on a consolidated application

j) amending the distribution option for non-registered accounts on a consolidated application

k) adding, amending or deleting the particulars of a provision in respect of automatic switches between mutual funds

You must advise us of any changes you make to the application form. For changes not listed above, you must submit the application form with the Declaration of Trust, Plan Terms, or Policy for our approval. Once approved, you must provide a commercially printed copy for our files.

Definitions used in the Plan, Declaration of Trust or Policy

Annuitant

Annuitant is the only term the Income Tax Act recognizes to describe the individual who receives benefits under the plan. If it is necessary to use another term to describe the annuitant, such as owner, plan holder, policyholder or applicant, this term must be defined in accordance with the definition of annuitant under the Income Tax Act. Any term used to describe the annuitant must be used uniformly throughout the documents.

Common-law partner

When a plan permits spousal/common-law partner contributions, the document must provide a definition of spouse/common-law partner. For more information on common-law partners, go to Frequently Asked Questions.

"Registered " and "RRSP/RRIF"

The terms "registered", "RRSP" and "RRIF" are not acceptable in these documents. These terms can be used only to refer to property that is transferred from or to a registered plan. Individual RSP or RIF contracts are registered when we confirm registration in a letter responding to your registration listing.

RSP issuer and RIF carrier

The RSP issuer or RIF carrier is the insurer, trustee or depositary. The Income Tax Act defines "issuer" in subsection 146(1) and "carrier" in subsection 146.3(1).

RSP Checklist

Required Document

Consultant or Agent

If the submission is not from the issuer we require written authorization for the consultant or agent to act on behalf of the issuer.

Insurer

Application, Policy (including all riders & schedules) & RSP Endorsement.

Trustee

Application and Declaration of Trust.

Depositary

Application and Plan Terms or Terms & Conditions.

Administrative Requirements

Application Form

Must contain the name, address, SIN, DOB of the annuitant and the individual contract number.

 

If a spousal/partner plan is possible, the name and SIN of the spouse/common-law partner.

 

Annuitant must request the issuer to apply for registration of the contract.

 

Annuitant's signature.

Issuer's signature.

Group Plans

If it's an employer sponsored plan, it must only be available to an employee of the employer or their spouse/common-law partner.

 

If contributions are by payroll deduction, the application form must authorize the employer to act as the agent for the purposes of contributions.

 

Must include a clause stating that only the issuer has the authority to amend the plan.

 

Must include a clause stating that the ultimate responsibility for administering the plan lies with issuer.

Agent/Broker

If applicable, must include a clause stating that the agent may submit registration listings.

Broker

Must include a clause stating that the ultimate responsibility for administering the plan lies with issuer.

Insured

Must include a clause stating that provisions of the RSP endorsement override the policy.

Statutory Requirements

ITA Reference

 

Document Reference

146(2)(a)

The plan cannot provide for the payment before maturity except for a refund of premiums in a lump sum and a payment to the annuitant.

 

146(2)(b)

The RSP cannot provide for the payment of any benefit after maturity except:

(i) retirement income to the annuitant;

(ii) full or partial commutation of retirement income under the plan to the annuitant; and

(iii) commutation of annuity that would be payable to someone other than the annuitant

 

146(2)(b.1)

Equal annual payments (any exception to "equal" must meet ITA 146(3)).

 
 

Equal annual payments following partial commutation - optional.

 

146(2)(b.2)

No increase in payments after death of the first annuitant.

 

146(2)(b.3)

No premium after maturity (may be silent).

 

146(2)(b.4)

Must mature no later than the end of year that the annuitant turns age 71.

 

146(2)(c)

Retirement income/annuity is not assignable.

 

146(2)(c.1)

Plan provides for payment to the taxpayer to reduce tax otherwise payable under Part X.1 of the Income Tax Act.

 

146(2)(c.2)

Commutation on death to individual/estate other than spouse/common law partner must be in a lump sum.

 

146(2)(c.3)

If a depositary is involved, the plan documents must stipulate that no right of offset is allowed and that property of plan cannot be pledged, assigned or any way alienated as security for a loan.

 

RIF Checklist

Required Documents

Consultant or Agent

If the submission is not from the carrier we require written authorization for the consultant or agent to act on behalf of the carrier.

Insurer

Application, Policy (including all riders & schedules) & RIF Endorsement.

Trustee

Application and Declaration of Trust.

Depositary

Application and Plan Terms/Terms & Conditions.

Administrative Requirements

Application Form

Must include the name, address, SIN, DOB of the annuitant and individual contract number.

 

Name, SIN and DOB of spouse/common-law partner if spouses' age is to be used as the basis for the calculation of the "minimum amount".

 

Spouse/common-law partner as subsequent annuitant.

 

Annuitant must request for the carrier to apply for registration of the contract.

 

Annuitant's signature.

Carrier's signature.

Broker

Must include a clause stating the ultimate responsibility for administering the plan lies with the carrier.

Insured

Must include a clause stating that provisions of the RIF endorsement override the policy.

Agent/Broker

If applicable, must include a clause stating that the agent may submit registration listings.

Statutory Requirements

ITA Reference

 

Document Reference

146.3(2)(a)

The carrier shall make only those payments described in paragraphs 146.3(2)(d), 146.3(2)(e), 146.3(14) and the definition of "retirement income funds" as per subsection 146.3(1) of the Income Tax Act.

 

146.3(2)(b)

No assignment of payments, in whole or in part.

 

146.3(2)(c)(i)

If a depositary is involved, there must be a clause stating no right of offset with respect to property.

 

146.3(2)(c)(ii)

If a depositary is involved, there must be a clause stipulating that property cannot be pledged, assigned or in any way alienated as security for a loan.

 

146.3(2)(d)

On death, if the spouse or common-law partner does not become the annuitant under the fund, then the distribution of the fund must be in single lump sum.

 

146.3(2)(e)

The carrier can transfer all or a part of the property held in the funds (not including the minimum amount for the year) to another carrier.

 

146.3(2)(e.1)

and/or

Carrier must ensure the minimum amount is paid in year of transfer.
(Depositary, Insured or pre 1998 Trust that doesn't hold an annuity contract as a qualified investment)

 

146.3(2)(e.2)

Carrier must ensure the minimum amount is paid in the year of transfer.
( Trust other than that in 146.3(2)(e.1) )

 

146.3(2)(f)

Property that can be transferred into a fund is any combination of subparagraph 146.3(2)(f)(i) to (viii) of the Income Tax Act.

 
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