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Quebec offers partial refunds for children’s glasses and contact lenses

When the Quebec government presented its budget last March, it announced that the cost of children’s glasses and contact lenses would be partially refunded as part of a broader initiative to help kids succeed at school. The See Better to Succeed program was officially confirmed on September 12 and applies retroactively to September 1, 2019.

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October 2019

Accounting standards applicable to employee future benefits for private enterprises and private sector NFPOs: proposed modifications regarding the use of a funding valuation

As mentioned in our bulletin last June, the Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) issued a few days ago an exposure draft proposing modifications to Section 3462 (“Employee Future Benefits”) for organizations electing to use a funding valuation to prepare their accounting results. This bulletin will be of particular interest to those who prepare financial statements in the private sector for a private enterprise or a not-for-profit organization (NFPO).

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September 2019

Pay Equity Act amendment – stricter requirements for organizations

As a follow-up to our first bulletin summarizing the new provisions of the Pay Equity Act (PEA) that came into effect on April 10, 2019, this bulletin presents the impact of these changes on organizations governed by the Act.

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September 2019

Municipal pension plan accounting – withdrawal of a tax relief measure

Quebec’s Ministère des Affaires municipales et de l’Habitation (MAMH) recently announced the withdrawal of a tax relief measure for the past service costs related to pension plan enhancements. This directive will come into effect as of the 2020 fiscal year.

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September 2019

Canada Labour Code reform: significant changes to leaves of absence

The Canada Labour Code (CLC) provides for various reasons why employees working for federally regulated entities may be absent from work.

Rules are established by the CLC as to the participation in plans providing pension, health and disability benefits for the following leaves of absence:

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August 2019

Beyond fairness and pay equity – How compensation drives performance

On the one hand, this article reminds us how a salary structure can be used to achieve equity and, on the other hand, points out that to truly drive performance, an organization needs to adopt and apply practices that go beyond an equitable salary structure.

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July 2019

New financial parameters for Quebec’s prescription drug insurance plan – 2019

Every July 1, the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec adjusts the public prescription drug insurance plan’s financial parameters to take into account the increase or decrease in plan costs.

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July 2019

Changes to the stabilization provision: What does this mean for your plan?

On July 3, the Quebec government published a draft Regulation amending the Supplemental Pension Plans Act. The draft Regulation’s main objective is to revise some parameters used to determine the stabilization provision for actuarial valuations starting December 31, 2019.

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July 2019

Accounting standards applicable to future group benefits: assumptions used by Canadian organizations

Several private sector organizations must include the recognition of their obligations toward defined benefit pension plans (DB plans) and group insurance plans offered to retirees (other post-retirement benefits) in their financial statements.

Again this year, we analyzed the annual reports of Canadian organizations listed on the S&P 60 Index (60 largest organizations) and on the S&P MidCap Index (mid-cap organizations) whose fiscal year ended between September 30 of the previous year and February 28 of the current year.

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June 2019

Final report of the Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare: Our experts react

In its 2018 budget, the federal government announced the creation of an Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare. The Advisory Council delivered its final report on June 12. This report sets out a list of 60 recommendations for the implementation of a national pharmacare program.

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June 2019

Pay equity in federally regulated organizations

On December 13, 2018, the federal government’s second Budget Implementation Act for Budget 2018, which establishes the Pay Equity Act, received Royal Assent. Once it comes into force, the Act will apply to federally regulated public- and private-sector employers with 10 or more employees.

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June 2019

Switch to biosimilars: British Columbia leads the way

As we mentioned in our bulletin last February, 2019 will be a pivotal year for biosimilars in Canada. On May 27, British Columbia began imposing biosimilars to current users of biologic prescription drugs.

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June 2019

Segmentation: The dawn of a new risk management strategy

Managing the risks of a defined benefit pension plan is among the main concerns of many plan sponsors. Think you’ve heard everything on the subject? Guess again! Segmentation, an innovative investment strategy, makes it possible to better manage risks without increasing contributions. Too good to be true? You be the judge!

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May 2019

2019 Ontario budget – Pension plan highlights

On April 11, the Ontario Government released its 2019 budget and introduced Bill 100, of which some measures affect pension plans.

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April 2019

Federal budget 2019: Several impacts on total rewards

The federal budget unveiled on March 19, 2019, affects many components of total rewards. Our specialists have identified the most relevant elements.

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March 2019

National pharmacare: Our analysis of the interim report

In February 2018, the federal government announced in its budget the creation of an Advisory Council on the Implementation of National Pharmacare, which led us to write our White Paper in November 2018 exposing our analysis based on four guiding principles: access, cost stability, public-private mix and efficiency.

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March 2019

2018 tax credit for medical expenses

For the 2018 tax year, Canadian taxpayers could be entitled to a tax credit ranging from 4% to 20% of medical expenses incurred for themselves or their dependants. The credit is subject to certain conditions and depends on the province or territory of residence.

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March 2019

Bill 10 – Improvements to the pay equity audit process (part one)

The Quebec government recently introduced a bill amending the Pay Equity Act mainly to improve the pay equity audit process. This Bill is in response to a decision by the Supreme Court of Canada on May 10, 2018, which had ruled that three sections of the Act were unconstitutional. The highest court had granted the Quebec government one year to make the necessary amendments to the Act.

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February 2019

The 10 Most Important Drug Insurance Events of 2018

Similarly to previous years, 2018 was a year rich in significant disruptions for the drug insurance industry in Canada. Here is our fourth edition of the 10 developments of the past year that have had—or will have—the greatest impact.

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February 2019

2019 social security programs parameters

Here are the parameters that will be used by the major social security programs in 2019.

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January 2019

Introduction of a health tax in British Columbia

As announced in last year’s British Columbia budget, a new employer health tax (EHT) was introduced on January 1, 2019. This new tax is meant to fill the gap caused by the reduction in Medical Service Plan (MSP) premiums, which were cut in half in 2018 and will be completely eliminated on January 1, 2020.

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January 2019

Further details on OHIP+

In June 2018, Ontario’s Health Minister announced the government’s position on OHIP+—the free universal drug program for all Ontarians under age 25—which had been implemented six months prior by the previous government. The new Ontario government was effectively seeking to become the second payer for individuals under age 25 covered by a private plan.

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January 2019