The Regulators look to certain fundamental principles, such as maintaining high standards of fitness and following prudent business practices to ensure registrants deal with their clients honestly, fairly and in good faith. NI 31-103 introduced many principle-based rules in the area of compliance which allow firms the flexibility to design and implement a compliance system that is customized to its size and manage the risks in its operations.

NI 31-103 requires firms to have a Policies and Procedures Manual that documents their compliance system. The Policies and Procedures Manual becomes a firm’s rule book and the regulators will use it to benchmark a firm’s compliance performance. Compliance requires much more than simply “knowing the rules” and a Policies and Procedures Manual needs to be more than a repetition of the rules. Hence the problem with principle-based regulations, it’s hard to know if you’ve got it right, but the regulators will let you know when you’ve got it wrong.

As Manager of Registrant Regulation for the OSC, David Gilkes assessed whether individuals and firms met both the initial and ongoing fit and proper standards for registration. In carrying out this role, he reviewed virtually every compliance field review of portfolio managers, exempt market dealers, and investment fund managers conducted by the OSC during his tenure. By bringing this understanding combined with an insight into the investment business and its operations, North Star can design and implement a compliance regime and draft a Policies and Procedures Manual that suits your business model and meets your obligations under securities legislation.

North Star helps firms to evaluate their ongoing fit and proper standards for compliance with securities legislation and other applicable legislation. North Star can conduct an independent review of a firm’s Policies and Procedures Manual, operations and practices to identify any risks in the compliance system and controls to mitigate these risks.