Pension Plans Certificate Program

Date and Time

Starts:03/21/2017 8:30 AM

Ends:03/23/2017 4:30 PM

Event Type



Yorkville Conference Center

150 Bloor St W

Toronto, ON


HRPA Members:
$1500 + Taxes
$1800 + Taxes
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Additional Information

To determine if your company qualifies to have the costs of this program covered through a grant, click here.

Event Sponsor

​This program is offered over three dates:

Level 1: March 21, 2017
Level 2: March 22, 2017
Level 3: March 23, 2017

Keep your employees motivated, confident and productive through their worklife.

Master the basics of Pension Plans and Governance

Keep your employees motivated, confident and productive through their worklife.

Compelling reasons to earn your certification:

  • Retirement Plan arrangements are under increased scrutiny from pension regulators and the corporations that sponsor them.
  • Legal issues concerning Canadian private pension plans have grown in prominence, as well as mounting issues over their adequacy in the context of an ageing population.
  • These concerns have become more acute as a result of the global economic downturn and the poor performance of pension plan investments. 

A must-attend program for HR professionals, committee members and pension trustees

  • Learn all about the key elements of operating and administering pension plans.
  • Gain a valuable, practical overview of retirement plans, governance and how you can help manage this valuable benefit.
  • Survey the sources of legal obligations relating to pension plan administration and understand best practices to navigate the various aspects of pension plans: fiduciary duties, pension law and regulations, funding, investment management and communications.

Complete all three levels and receive your Pension Plans program Certificate.

Each day builds on the knowledge and skills of the previous level.

Participant Take-aways:

Level 1 – Introduction to the key elements of a Canadian retirement arrangement and its context

  • Overview of the retirement system in Canada
  • Definitions of the various retirement plans used by employers
  • Regulation of retirement plans
  • Statutory standards and other governance guidelines of retirement plans
  • The role of service providers
  • Investment management
  •  Asset custody

Level 2 – In-depth look into the guiding principles of retirement plans

  • Income Tax Act requirements
  • Minimum standards pension legislation
  • Retirement plan documentation
  • Actuarial funding and accounting reports
  • Employment and Family law issues
  • Investment management for Defined Benefit and Capital Accumulation plans
  • Employee communication and member support beyond enrollment: making sure the participants understand the true value of their group savings plan

Level 3 – Pension case studies and practical intelligence

  • Pension disputes
  • Designing governance structures
  • Designing governance structures
  • Investment policies and other governing documents
  • Real-life fiduciary and actuarial issues /de-risking
  • Investment management (non-traditional portfolio strategies, investment trends, how to drive a meeting or interview with investment managers)
    • Audits by regulators
    • Outlook: a practitioner’s look into the future

WHAT you will gain:

Attendees can offer immediate value-add and ROI to the organization after earning certification in the following ways:

  • Initiate steps for good pension governance.
  • Avoid prospects of legal liabilities related to pension plans, particularly in an environment of economic uncertainty.
  • Develop an effective risk management strategy and foster a culture of knowledge and best practices among key individuals involved.
  • Ensure compliance with legal obligations and greatly reduce exposure to liability.​

Who should attend:

HR professionals; Members of Board of Trustees; Pension Committees; C-Suite executive; Pension trustees (directly responsible for administration, governance or management of pension plans)​

Speaker bio(s)

 Jon Marin

Jon Marin

Jon Marin practices exclusively in the pensions and employee benefits law area, providing advice on legal and regulatory issues affecting all aspects of provincially and federally regulated pension plans and other employee benefit plans.

Jon deals with issues such as plan design, governance and administration, pension de-risking, plan wind ups, plan compliance, as well as pension and benefit issues arising in corporate transactions generally, including acquisitions, divestitures, mergers and corporate reorganizations.

Jon has assisted on several conversions of registered pension plans from defined benefit to shared risk plans (a form of target benefit plan) in both the public and private sectors in the province in New Brunswick. Jon also provides ongoing advice relating to the administration of shared risk plans.

 James Pierlot

James Pierlot

Founder and principal of Pierlot Pension Law, James Pierlot provides legal and consulting advice to pension plan sponsors and administrators. He also develops and delivers educational programs on pension administration and governance for pension trustees, pension plan administrators and other organizations, including Humber College and the Human Resources Professionals Association, Ontario Branch. James is a member of the Canadian Bar Association Pension & Benefits Law Executive Committee, a past-Chair of the Ontario Bar Association Pension & Benefits Law Executive Committee, a member of the C.D. Howe Institute Pension Policy Council and a member of the Legal Advisory Committee of the Financial Services Commission of Ontario. James speaks at industry events, is frequently quoted in the press and gives radio and television interviews.

Recognized as a thought leader on retirement income security, James was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and the John Hanson Memorial Prize from the Chicago Actuarial Foundation in 2012 for his advocacy and published work. He speaks English and French and holds degrees in tax law, civil law, common law, European law and history.

 David Stamp

David Stamp

David Stamp is an expert litigator specializing in pension and benefits litigation and employment litigation, as well as general commercial litigation. He represents major pension funds and corporations in various pensions litigation matters, and has acted for the successful party in a number of well-known pension and benefits cases at various levels of court including the Ontario Court of Appeal and the Federal Court of Appeal. His practice also includes a substantial administrative law component, both advising and appearing before statutory tribunals. David is a frequent presenter on pension class action and other pension litigation issues. He also has extensive experience acting for employers defending wrongful dismissal and other employment-related litigation, and many years of corporate and commercial litigation experience.

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