Article February 2, 2022

The Chambre, MFDA reach agreement

The Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (MFDA) and the Chambre de la sécurité financière (CSF) reached an agreement in September on joint accreditation standards for continuing education (CE) activities. The MFDA, which launched its new CE accreditation framework on December 1st, has received approval from the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) to implement policy and oversee Personal Development Requirements of its member advisors.

Under the MFDA’s new system, advisors must accumulate 30 PDUs during each two-year reference period (beginning December 1, 2021). In addition, the MFDA will also roll out its Continuing Education Record Tracking System (CERTS), dedicated to reporting and tracking of compliance with the new CE requirements.

As part of the agreement between the MFDA and the Chambre, representatives of Quebec-based firms who are working outside of the province will now be able to take training in their province of residence and have their training accredited for their certificate in Quebec by the Chambre. In this way, these representatives will no longer have to undergo the same training twice for each of their practice certificates. However, this agreement is only valid for representatives of brokers who currently hold certificates outside of Quebec and are members of the MFDA. As for members of the CSF, they will remain under the requirement to take training courses accredited directly by the Chambre.

Through CERTS, the compliance officers of MFDA members will be informed of the number of PDUs their representatives have earned.

Brokerage firms will be able to accredit their own Professional Development Activities (PDAs) or allow their representatives to attend third party accredited PDAs. At present, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the CSF are the only third parties recognized by the MFDA to issue accredited PDAs.

The agreement with the MFDA clarifies that the CSF is now a recognized third-party accreditor by the Canadian self-regulatory organization.

PDUs will be recognized on a 1:1 equivalency basis. For example, a course rated 2.5 PDUs as part of the catalogue provided by the CSF will be worth 2.5 PDUs under the MFDA’s CE system.

Effective now, MFDA dealer members no longer need to submit a self-certification report.

Instead, the member will have to keep documentation in sufficient detail to support that the CE activity it has recognized meets the criteria set out in the MFDA’s amended regulations (Policy 9).

National dealer members of the MFDA may therefore issue their PDAs for delivery to their authorized persons (representatives) outside of Quebec. Oversight of CE activities is done on a discretionary basis by the MFDA, which has the authority to inspect a dealer member’s recognized activities under the provisions of the regulation.