The financial services regulatory landscape continues to evolve at an accelerated pace: the complexity of compliance is escalating, as is the corresponding cost of compliance. For those operating in this highly-regulated and highly-scrutinized sector, the consequences of non-compliance are serious and could result in exposure to class actions as well as regulatory investigations, leading not only to possible penalties and compliance orders, but also to heightened reputational risk through public naming.
Federally- and provincially-regulated organizations and financial institutions operating in this space require specialized guidance. They must have access to the expert legal advice that will enable them to navigate through this complex environment, remain compliant and implement systems that will ensure they are properly equipped to adapt to regulatory change. This need extends to FinTech, lenders and entities that provide third-party services to those organizations – such as credit reporting agencies, data aggregators, debt collectors, loyalty program operators and technology companies.
The deep experience and proven expertise of our practitioners make Osler’s Financial Services Regulatory Group particularly well-equipped to provide that advice.
Drawing on their in-depth knowledge of the relevant legal regimes and leveraging our established relationships with all of the major players in the Canadian financial services sector – domestic banks, foreign financial institutions, regulators and the Canadian Bankers Association (CBA) – Osler’s lawyers offer practical, risk-based advice on these regimes and how to implement them effectively, with due regard to each client’s specific business context.
Comprehensive, specialized advice
Osler’s pre-eminent Financial Services Regulatory Group advises on the establishment or acquisition of financial service entities and provides regulatory advice to domestic and foreign financial institutions and financial services providers on all aspects of their business, including compliance with the federal and provincial regulatory requirements related to their products and services.
Our multidisciplinary team includes regulatory experts as well as lending and corporate finance specialists, enabling us to provide clients with guidance on how policy changes will affect their business. Osler’s Financial Services Regulatory Group lawyers are particularly well-positioned to advise on the wide range of business and regulatory issues across the financial services industry, including:
- Strategic mergers & acquisitions
- Commercial transactions and the legal, regulatory and structuring issues for all types of day-to-day arrangements, including joint ventures, strategic alliances and investments
- The issuance of regulatory capital, covered bonds and securities
- Cross-border inbound transactions to Canada, such as investments of foreign institutions in Canadian entities and lending
- Counselling new domestic and foreign entrants to the Canadian financial services marketplace
- Outsourcing by or to financial institutions and compliance with Canadian outsourcing legal requirements and other technology-related issues
- Co-branded credit and debit cards commercial arrangements
Regulatory compliance and governance
- Compliance with Canadian financial institution legislation, including regulations, guidance, advisories, rulings, voluntary codes and practices that apply to the Canadian financial services industry’s products and services
- Corporate governance advice tailored to financial institutions, including legislative compliance systems and ongoing monitoring, board policies and risk management
- Counsel related to anti-money laundering, anti-bribery and anti-foreign corruption
- Competition and anti-trust advice to the financial services industry, including advice related to credit cards, payment systems and related financial services products
- Payment systems and mobile payments advice
- Consumer facing issues, including cost of borrowing disclosure, privacy, anti-spam compliance, credit reporting, the use of electronic documents in consumer finance products such as loans, payday loans, credit cards, debit cards, gift cards, store value cards, prepaid cards, electronic wallet products and mobile payments