Pension Plans

Chronology of Amendments to the Pension Benefits Standards Act

The Pension Benefits Standards Act, S.B.C. 1991, c.15, was enacted in 1991, and most parts of it came into force on January 1, 1993.

1992 and 1994 Amendments

Amendments were made to the Pension Benefits Standards Act in 1992 and 1994 by way of:

Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, 1992 , S.B.C. 1992, c. 77 ("Bill 81")

Labour Relations Code, S.B.C. 1992, c. 82 ("Bill 84")

Family Relations Amendment Act, 1994, S.B.C. 1994, c. 6 ("Bill 5")

Skills, Training and Labour Statutes Amendment Act, 1994, S.B.C. 1994, c. 23 ("Bill 39")

1996 Consolidation

Upon the coming into force of the Revised Statutes of British Columbia, 1996, on April 21, 1997, the revised Pension Benefits Standards Act, R. S.B.C. 1996, c. 352, replaced the Pension Benefits Standards Act, S.B.C. 1991, c.15, previously in force.

The revisions to the Pension Benefits Standards Act, resulting from the issuance of the Revised Statutes of British Columbia, 1996, were not intended to change the law but rather make it more accessible. The revisions include plainer language, and reorganization of some sections, but no intended changes to the legal effect.

Most section numbers in the Pension Benefits Standards Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 352, remained the same as the corresponding section numbers in the previous Pension Benefits Standards Act, S.B.C. 1991, c.15.

There were two sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act which had been passed in 1991, but which were not yet in force at the time of the consolidation for theRevised Statutes of British Columbia, 1996. Consequently, these two sections appeared in the Pension Benefits Standards Act (Supplement) rather than in thePension Benefits Standards Act itself. These two sections came into force, as scheduled, on January 1, 1998. These two sections had the effect of amending the vesting rules in sections 26 (1) and 48 (7) of the Pension Benefits Standards Act.

1997 and 1998 Amendments

A small number of amendments were made to the Pension Benefits Standards Act in 1997 and 1998, as part of the following packages of miscellaneous amendments.

Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, 1997, S.B.C. 1997, c. 27 ("Bill 22") which passed Third Reading 1997.07.16, received Royal Assent 1997.07.28, and came into force 1998.01.01.

Family Maintenance Enforcement Amendment Act, 1997, S.B.C. 1997, c. 19 ("Bill 32") which passed Third Reading 1997.07.21, and received Royal Assent 1997.07.28. The provisions affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act came into force 1998.04.14.

Regulatory Streamlining Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, 1998, S.B.C. 1998, c. 42 ("Bill 44") which passed Third Reading 1998.07.23, received Royal Assent 1998.07.30, and came into force 1998.07.31.

Following is a summary of the sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act that were amended by the above three Acts:

  • Section 1 (3.1) added by section 35 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 5 amended by section 26 of Bill 22, in force as of 1998.01.01
     
  • Section 8 (4) amended by section 36 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 9 amended by section 37 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 10 (4) (f) amended by section 38 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 14 (2) amended by section 39 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 15 amended by section 40 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 26 (1) amended by the Supplement, in force as of 1998.01.01
     
  • Section 41 (3) amended by section 41 of Bill 44, in force as of 1998.07.31
     
  • Section 48 (2.1) added by section 27 of Bill 22, in force as of 1998.01.01
     
  • Section 48 (7) (a) amended by the Supplement, in force as of 1998.01.01
     
  • Section 49 (3) amended by section 28 of Bill 22, in force as of 1998.01.01
     
  • Section 63 amended by section 18 of Bill 32, in force as of 1998.04.14

1999 Amendments

A large number of amendments were made to the Pension Benefits Standards Act in 1999, by way of:

Pension Benefits Standards Amendment Act, 1999, S.B.C. 1999, c. 41 ("Bill 58") which passed Third Reading 1999.07.12, received Royal Assent 1999.07.15, and most parts of which came into force 1999.07.15. The other parts of Bill 58 came into force 1999.12.17.

A complete list of all the sections the Pension Benefits Standards Act amended by Bill 58 is provided in a separate page on this web site.

Bulletin further describing the amendments contained in Bill 58 is also provided on this web site.

Some other minor amendments were made in 1999 by way of:

Fee Statutes Amendment Act, 1999, S.B.C. 1999, c. 32 ("Bill 94")

Public Sector Pension Plans Act, S.B.C. 1999, c. 44 ("Bill 95")

2000 Amendments

A few minor amendments were made to the Pension Benefits Standards Act in 2000, as part of the following packages of miscellaneous amendments.

Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, 2000, S.B.C. 2000, c. 9 ("Bill 8") which passed Third Reading 2000.05.09, received Royal Assent 2000.06.12, with the provision affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act deemed to have come into force 2000.04.01.

Definition of Spouse Amendment Act, 2000, S.B.C. 2000, c. 24 ("Bill 21") which passed Third Reading 2000.07.05, received Royal Assent 2000.07.06, with the provision affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act coming into force 2000.07.28.

Following is a summary of the sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act that were amended by the above two Acts:

  • Section 1 (1) amended by section 29 of Bill 21, providing a reworded definition of "spouse", in force as of 2000.07.28.
     
  • Section 42 (1) amended by section 41 of Bill 8, providing that the British Columbia Pension Corporation is an eligible fund holder, in force as of 2000.04.01.

2001 Amendments

Provisions were repealed that had allowed multi-employer pension plans to have provisions allowing the suspension of pension benefits of a former member who had taken early retirement, and then returned to work in the same trade and industry with an employer that was not a participant of the pension plan. This repeal was done through passage of:

Skills Development And Labour Statutes Amendment Act, 2001, S.B.C. 2001, c. 33 ("Bill 18") which passed Third Reading and received Royal Assent 2001.08.16, with the provision affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act coming into force 2001.09.11. 

Following is a summary of the sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act that were affected by the above Act:

  • Section 74 (2) (g) amended by section 12 of Bill 18, providing a revised regulation making power, in force as of 2001.09.11.
     
  • Section 74.1 added by section 13 of Bill 18, providing transitional provisions related to the repeal of the suspension of benefits provisions, in force as of 2001.09.11.

2003 Amendments

The right of appeal of an administrative decision to the Commercial Appeals Commission was replaced with the right of appeal to the Financial Services Tribunal due to the disbanding of the Commercial Appeals Commission. This amendment was done through passage of:

Commercial Appeals Commission Repeal Act, S.B.C. 2003, c. 51 ("Bill 70") which passed Third Reading on 2003.10.20 and received Royal Assent 2003.10.23, with the provision affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act coming into force 2004.06.01. 

Following is a summary of the sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act that were affected by the above Act:

  • A definition of "tribunal" added to section 1 of the PBSA, by section 41 of Bill 70.
     
  • Amendments to the appeal provisions in section 21 of the PBSA, by section 42 of Bill 70.
     
  • Elimination of the reference in section 66 of the PBSA to the repealed subsection 21 (3), by section 43 of Bill 70.

2004 Amendments

A change to the requirement that the audited financial statements required to be filed for pension plans with more than $10 million in assets be prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), provided that the statements otherwise meet the accounting standards of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants. This amendment was done through passage of:

Finance Statutes Amendment Act, 2004, S.B.C. 2004, c. 62 ("Bill 69") which passed Third Reading on 2004.10.07and received Royal Assent 2004.10.21, with the provision affecting the Pension Benefits Standards Act coming into force 2004.12.03. 

Following is a summary of the sections of the Pension Benefits Standards Act that were affected by the above Act:

  • The requirement in section 9 (7) of the PBSA, that audited financial statements be prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) was replaced with the requirement that the statements be prepared in accordance with accounting standards prescribed by regulation. This amendment was done through passage of section 40 of Bill 69.
     
  • The regulation making powers in section 74 of the PBSA were amended to allow the prescribing of accounting standards for pension plan financial statements filed under the PBSA, by section 41 of Bill 69.