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Effective September 30, 2019, the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) adopted amendments which now require investment fund issuers to file annual reports of exempt distributions online through the BCSC eServices system, as opposed to submitting the annual reports in paper format as was previously required.

In anticipation of the next upcoming filing deadline

The British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) published proposed amendments (Proposed Amendments) to British Columbia Instrument 13-502 Electronic Filing of Reports of Exempt Distribution that would require investment fund issuers to use BCSC eServices when submitting Form 45-106F1s filed on an annual basis (currently these annual filings are submitted as paper filings

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) published amendments (Amendments) to National Instrument 45-106 Prospectus Exemptions and CSA Staff Notice 45-308 Guidance for Preparing and Filing Reports of Exempt Distribution under 45-106 to change the information required within Form 45-106F1 Report of Exempt Distribution (Report).

The Amendments provide more flexibility regarding the certification requirement, streamline the information required to be gathered by filers and address certain concerns raised by foreign dealers and Canadian institutional investors.  The main changes to the Report are provided below.


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On December 18, 2017, the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) and the TSX Venture Exchange (TSXV, together with the TSX, the TMX Exchanges) introduced electronic versions of TSX Form 4 and TSXV Form 2A Personal Information Form and the related TSX Form 4B and TSXV Form 2C1 Declaration (the Electronic Documents

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On December 1, 2016, the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) will be replacing the current fee rule in Alberta with ASC Rule 13-501 Fees (ASC Rule 13-501) which will increase registrant and capital market activity fees, and for the first time in Alberta, will introduce a participation fee model.

Any issuers that are currently a reporting issuer in Ontario are already familiar with the concept of a participation fee.  The participation fee is an annual payment based on the capitalization of the issuer (the larger the issuer’s capitalization is, the larger the fee is).  The ASC participation fee will be payable at the time that the issuer files its annual financial statements on SEDAR.  Under the ASC’s current fee rule, the maximum an issuer would pay when it file its annual financial statements is $2,400 (which is the amount paid by short form eligible issuers).

As a result of the introduction of the new participation fee model, any reporting issuer with a capitalization of over $50 million will see an increase in the payment that it submits to Alberta with its annual financial statements.  In some cases, issuers will see a significant increase as the maximum amount payable under the participation fee model is $48,000.

Types of Reporting Issuers

The ASC participation fee rates are based on the type of reporting issuer it is – either a Class 1 reporting issuer, a Class 2 reporting issuer, a Class 3A reporting issuer or a Class 3B reporting issuer.  Each type of reporting issuer is defined below:


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On April 7, 2016, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) published amendments (Amendments) to the reporting requirements in National Instrument 45-106 Prospectus Exemptions (NI 45-106).  The amendments were previously published for public comment on August 13, 2015.  Concurrently, the CSA published CSA Staff Notice 45-308 (Revised) Guidance for Preparing and Filing Reports of Exempt Distribution under 45-106 (CSA Notice 45-308) which provides helpful information for industry participants in navigating through the Amendments which come into force on June 30, 2016.

Background

Current Reporting Forms

The reporting forms required to report an exempt distribution presently consist of two forms, being Form 45-106F6 British Columbia Report of Exempt Distribution (Form 45-106F6) which is used for distributions in British Columbia and Form 45-106F1 Report of Exempt Distribution (Form 45-106F1) which is used for distributions in all other Canadian jurisdictions.  Issuers who meet an exemption under BC Instrument 45-533 may file a Form 45-106F1 in British Columbia instead of filing a Form 45-106F6.

As described below, the amendments replace Form 45-106F1 and Form 45-106F6 with a single, new Form 45-106F1 (New Form 45-106F1).

Current Filing Systems

Form 45-106F1 or Form 45-106F6, as applicable, are filed with the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) through the BCSC eServices website and issuers are required to have a profile created on the BCSC eServices system before a filing can be completed.  Issuers who have a System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) profile automatically have a profile existing in BCSC eServices.  Issuers who do not have a SEDAR profile are required to submit a profile form to the BCSC to create their profile on BCSC eServices at least 24 hours before they can submit the reporting form.  BCSC eServices requires the filer to enter a few pieces of information from the Form 45-106F1/F6 into certain fields on the eServices submission page before attaching the reporting documents and completing the submission.  The Form 45-106F1 or Form 45-106F6 is typically populated in Word format, and then converted into PDF format before being uploaded to BCSC eServices.  In addition, the schedules to Form 45-106F1 and Form 45-106F6 are removed and filed as separate PDF documents.

Form 45-106F1 filings with the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) are filed through the OSC’s Electronic Filing Portal (OSC Portal).  Unlike the BCSC eServices system, the OSC Portal does not require a profile to be created by an issuer in order to make a filing.  Also unlike the BCSC eServices system, where only a few pieces of information need to be entered into the submission page, the submission on the OSC Portal requires the filer to enter every piece of information in the entire Form 45-106F1 onto the submission page.  In addition, Schedule I to Form 45-106F1 must be completed in Excel format and uploaded to the submission page.  The Form 45-106F1 is typically originally populated in Word format, the Schedule I information is populated a second time in Excel format, and the filer populates the Form 45-106F1 in its entirety again electronically on the OSC Portal.  If the Form 45-106F1 is being filed only in Ontario, a filer may draft the Form 45-106F1 in the OSC Portal and the Excel version of Schedule I and forgo the creation of the Word version.

Currently, Form 45-106F1 filings in all other Canadian jurisdictions simply require the executed Form 45-106F1 to be mailed to the securities commission.  On May 24, 2016 the CSA will require the filing of Form 45-106F1 through SEDAR, subject to an exemption for foreign issuers outlined below.

Amendment Details

Investment Fund Filing Deadline

The amendments have changed the annual reporting deadline for investment funds to January 30 for the reporting of all distributions in the previous calendar year made using the exemptions in sections 2.3, 2.10 and 2.19 of NI 45-106.  Currently, investment funds have until 30 days after the end of the investments fund’s financial year.  The CSA have provided a transition period to allow investment fund issuers that file annually to file the current Form 45-106F1 or the New Form 45-106F1 for distributions that occur before January 1, 2017.

Format of Reporting Form

The amendments provide that all distributions on or after June 30, 2016 are to be reported using New Form 45-106F1 in all provinces and territories of Canada.  The New Form 45-106F1 replaces the current Form 45-106F1 and the current Form 45-106F6.  There are also two schedules to New Form 45-106F1, both of which are to be completed in Excel format.

Filing Systems

The New Form 45-106F1 will be filed with the BCSC through BCSC eServices, with the OSC through the OSC Portal and with all other jurisdictions through SEDAR (certain foreign issuers may still make paper filings, as provided below).  The New Form 45-106F1 can be drafted within the OSC Portal or within BCSC eServices and the filed version from the OSC Portal or BCSC eServices, along with the Excel versions of the two proposed schedules can be submitted to the other jurisdictions.

Exemption from Filing on SEDAR

Under National Instrument 13-101 System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR), a foreign issuer that falls within the definition of “foreign issuer (SEDAR)” is not required to use SEDAR and may continue to file paper copies in all jurisdictions other than Ontario and B.C. (both of which require the use of their electronic filing systems).  A foreign issuer can voluntarily elect to use SEDAR by filing a SEDAR Form 5 Notice of Election by Foreign Issuer(SEDAR).

Details Required in the New Form 45-106F1

The following is the list provided by the CSA in Annex 2 of CSA Notice 45-308:
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On February 19, 2016, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) published OSC Staff Notice 51-726 Report on Staff’s Review of Insider Reporting and User Guides for Insiders and Issuers (OSC Staff Notice 51-726).

Background

OSC staff conducted a review of insider reporting and insider trading policies of 100 reporting issuers.  On average, each

On August 13, 2015, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) published proposed amendments to the reporting requirements in National Instrument 45-106 Prospectus Exemptions (NI 45-106).

Background

Current Reporting Forms

The reporting forms required to report an exempt distribution presently consist of two forms, being Form 45-106F6 British Columbia Report of Exempt Distribution (Form 45-106F6) which is used for distributions in British Columbia and Form 45-106F1 Report of Exempt Distribution (Form 45-106F1) which is used for distributions in all other Canadian jurisdictions.  Issuers who meet an exemption under BC Instrument 45-533 may file a Form 45-106F1 in British Columbia instead of filing a Form 45-106F6.

In March 2014, the provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and New Brunswick published proposed amendments to NI 45-106 that would result in the creation of two additional reporting forms which would be Form 45-106F10 Report of Exempt Distribution for Investment Fund Issuers and Form 45-106F11 Report of Exempt Distribution For Issuers Other Than Investment Funds (March 2014 Proposed Forms).

As described below, the CSA proposes to replace Form 45-106F1, Form 45-106F6 and the March 2014 Proposed Forms with a single, revised Form 45-106F1.

Current Filing Systems

Form 45-106F1 or Form 45-106F6, as applicable, are filed with the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) through the BCSC eServices website and issuers are required to have a profile created on the BCSC eServices system before a filing can be completed.  Issuers who have a System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval (SEDAR) profile automatically have a profile existing in BCSC eServices.  Issuers who do not have a SEDAR profile are required to submit a profile form to the BCSC to create their profile on BCSC eServices at least 24 hours before they can submit the reporting form.  BCSC eServices requires the filer to enter a few pieces of information from the Form 45-106F1/F6 into certain fields on the eServices submission page before attaching the reporting documents and completing the submission.  The Form 45-106F1 or Form 45-106F6 is typically populated in Word format, and then converted into PDF format before being uploaded to BCSC eServices.  In addition, the schedules to Form 45-106F1 and Form 45-106F6 are removed and filed as separate PDF documents.

Form 45-106F1 filings with the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) are filed through the OSC’s Electronic Filing Portal (OSC Portal).  Unlike the BCSC eServices system, the OSC Portal does not require a profile to be created by an issuer in order to make a filing.  However, unlike the BCSC eServices system, where only a few pieces of information need to be entered into the submission page, the submission on the OSC Portal requires the filer to enter every piece of information in the entire Form 45-106F1 onto the submission page.  In addition, Schedule I to Form 45-106F1 must be completed in Excel format and uploaded to the submission page.  The Form 45-106F1 is typically originally populated in Word format, the Schedule I information is populated a second time in Excel format, and the filer populates the Form 45-106F1 in its entirety again electronically on the OSC Portal.  If the Form 45-106F1 is only being filed in Ontario, a filer may draft the Form 45-106F1 in the OSC Portal and the Excel version of Schedule I and forgo the creation of the Word version.

Form 45-106F1 filings in all other Canadian jurisdictions simply require the executed Form 45-106F1 to be mailed to the securities commission.  A recent proposal by the CSA would allow the filing of Form 45-106F1 reports through SEDAR.

The time and costs to issuers to complete the reporting for an exempt distribution have been increasing as a result of the introduction of BCSC eServices and OSC Portal filing systems requiring the creation of different forms, completion of different formats of the schedules, and population of the electronic submission pages.  The CSA have received this feedback from the industry in response letters to various proposed amendments to NI 45-106 and are therefore proposing the current amendments, in part, to harmonize the reporting forms into one.

In addition, the proposed amendments include the requirement to provide additional information to the CSA to assist them in regulatory oversight of the exempt market and to provide information for future policies.

Proposed Changes


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As reported in our Recent Developments with Respect to Notice-and-Access Procedure, Notice and Access Related Amendments to NI 54-101 and NI 51-102, and Implementing Notice-and-Access: What You Need to Know bulletins, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) implemented a Notice and Access methodology for the electronic delivery of proxy materials by reporting issuers beginning