NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 17, December 2009
The 2010 Social Security Programs Parameters
The Year's Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE) for 2010 will be $47,200, an increase of 1.9% over the 2009 YMPE of $46,300. The basic exemption remains at the current level of $3,500, which is the level applicable since January 1st, 1998. Employee and employer contribution rates will remain at 4.95% of contributory earnings in 2010, for an annual maximum contribution of $2,163.15. The maximum monthly retirement pension at age 65 is set at $934.17 for 2010, based on the average YMPE over the last five years.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 16, December 2009
Influenza A (H1N1): How does it impact your group benefits plan?
Under normal circumstances, insurance companies require a doctor's note for the payment of short-term disability insurance claims. However, all of the insurers surveyed confirmed that they are prepared to show flexibility on this requirement when it comes to the reimbursement of short-term disability benefits for individuals who exhibit flu-like symptoms. This decision was made following recommendations issued by public authorities requesting that individuals exhibiting these symptoms stay home to prevent the potential inundation of medical centres. With these recommendations in mind, and in an effort to simplify claims processing, some insurers teamed up with the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association to develop a self declaration form to be completed by the employee, whereas others will manage the situation separately for each client based on the region affected and the risks inherent to the group.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 15, November 2009
Pay Equity - A New Deadline
The new Pay Equity Act (the "Act"), which came into force on May 28, 2009, incorporates important changes, including a new deadline. Employers subject to the Act have until the end of 2010 to complete their pay equity program and pay adjustments in compensation to eligible employees, if they haven't already done so. Employers who have already done so must conduct an audit of the pay equity established. An employer's obligations and options depend on which of the following three scenarios best reflects the employer's situation.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 14, November 2009
Accounting standards applicable to employee future benefits: what Quebec-based companies listed on the S&P/TSX Index do
Several private sector companies will soon be finalizing their budgets for the upcoming fiscal year and preparing their financial statements for the current fiscal year. Included among the accompanying notes that should be prepared for these financial statements are those pertaining to costs for defined benefit (DB) plans and for group insurance plans offered to retirees (other post-retirement benefits).
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 13, November 2009
Rates for Health Care Professionals in 2009
The average fees per visit could be useful in establishing the maximum amounts payable under your group insurance plans. Moreover, the average fee per visit increase compared to that of 2008 allows you to validate the inflation assumption used by your insurer in renewing your health premium rates.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 12, October 2009
Tax relief measures for municipal sector defined-benefit pension plans
In the wake of various consultations with the municipal sector, the Ministère des Affaires municipales, des Régions et de l'Occupation du territoire (MAMROT) published an information document on October 7 concerning the supervision and follow-up of the tax relief measure for municipal sector defined-benefit pension plans. Initially introduced during the 2009 budget preparations for municipal organizations, this tax relief measure was intended to mitigate the effects of the 2008 economic crisis on the 2009 tax burden. This new MAMROT document specifies its future application.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 11, August 2009
Review of the institutional fund performances over the first semester of 2009
We are pleased to present our mid-year review analyzing the performance as at June 30, 2009, of institutional managers comprising the Normandin Beaudry Investment Funds Universe. The purpose of this review is to keep you up-to-date on the recent performance of financial markets and institutional managers. You will receive this review each year after the end of the first semester.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 10, July 2009
The high volatility of the Canadian dollar in recent years relative to the major foreign currencies has had a strong impact on returns on foreign assets for Canadian investors. The current economic environment coupled with the effect of currency fluctuations on pension fund performance is encouraging investors to consider hedging foreign assets against currency risk.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 9, July 2009
How much your employees need to save for their retirement: rules of thumb
The current financial market crisis has led many employees to question some fundamental retirement savings concepts and strategies. Will investment in stocks yield a better long-term return than an investment in bonds? Add to this the fact that, beyond contributions paid to your capital accumulation plan (CAP), whether it is a defined contribution (DC) registered pension plan, a group registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) or a deferred profit-sharing plan (DPSP), your employees generally find it difficult to determine how much they need to save for retirement.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12, N. 8, July 2009
Pension Plan Governance during the Financial Crisis
The financial crisis severely impacted pension plans in 2008, and the uncertainty remains. Pension committee members must manage this situation and several challenges will need to be addressed in the years ahead. What are the responsibilities of the pension committee in the current economic climate?
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 7, June 2009
New Financial Parameters for the Quebec Prescription Drug Insurance Plan
The Régie de l'assurance maladie du Québec recently announced the new financial parameters that will apply to the public prescription drug insurance plan for the period of July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010. One of the provisions of Quebec's Act respecting prescription drug insurance provides for the revision of these parameters on July 1 each year to take into account the increase in plan costs.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 6, June 2009
New regulation regarding pension plans
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NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 5, March 2009
Managing compensation in a turbulent economy
The economic news over the past few months provides no shortage of signs that we are in a serious economic crisis. Some say it will soon be over, while others believe it could last several years. For the first time since industrialization, the economic outlook is influenced by divergent factors-a slowdown in global economic activity coupled with a shortage of qualified labour.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 4, March 2009
Non-refundable tax credits for medical expenses
Several expenses related to medical care can reduce or eliminate the income tax owing by Canadian taxpayers(1). Subject to certain eligibility criteria, a tax credit of between 4% and 20% of the incurred expenses can be granted. It is important to note that unlike some other tax credits, credits for medical expenses are non-refundable. Therefore, credits in excess of the amount of income tax to be paid are not reimbursed.
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 3, January 2009
Health Insurance at Retirement
Since accounting standards applicable to post-retirement group insurance plans were introduced, organizations offering these types of benefits have been required to report their accounting cost in their financial statements. This accounting cost, added to the current and expected significant increase in health care costs, to the increase in the number of retirees associated with the aging of the population and to the increase in the life expectancy of these retirees, have led numerous organizations to question the future of this coverage.
Nb Bulletin, Vol. 12 N. 4, January 2009
Risk Management for Pension Committees
Effective December 13, 2007, all pension committees subject to the Supplemental Pension Plans Act must adopt internal by-laws that include a risk management section. But what does risk management really mean and what are the implications? Who is at risk?
NB Bulletin Vol. 12 N. 1, January 2009
A TFSA at Any Cost?
Starting in 2009, the TFSA allows taxpayers aged 18 and older to contribute up to $5,000 every year and earn investment income tax-free. This annual contribution limit will be indexed each year to the consumer price index (CPI) and rounded to the nearest $500. Excess contributions to a TFSA are subject to a penalty of 1% per month.