As the regulator of Ontario’s capital markets, the Commission has the responsibility to administer and enforce securities legislation in the province. As such, the Commission performs an adjudicative function.
Members carry out their adjudicative duties by individually serving on adjudicative panels that conduct hearings and render decisions independently of the Commission as a whole. Panels:
- hear enforcement matters, including proceedings involving alleged violations of the Securities Act and Commodity Futures Act;
- conduct hearings involving regulatory policy issues;
- hear appeals of adjudicative decisions of self-regulatory organizations; and
- review decisions of OSC staff.
Rules of ProcedureThe Commission has Rules of Procedure that apply to all adjudicative proceedings before the Commission where it is required by law to hold a hearing. The Rules are designed to ensure the fair and efficient resolution of proceedings. This is consistent with the Commission’s objectives to make its adjudicative processes more transparent and accessible.
Furthermore, the Rules of Procedure are intended to provide clear guidance to all participants in Commission proceedings, whether or not they are self-represented, or represented by counsel or an agent. The Rules are organized according to the procedural steps taken in a typical proceeding. Generally, Commission hearings are open to the public.
Adjudicative GuidelinesOn April 1, 2008, the Commission approved adjudicative guidelines for Members on the standards expected of them in the exercise of their adjudicative responsibilities. The purpose of the guidelines is to ensure that the adjudicative process is, and is seen to be, conducted independently with impartiality, integrity and effectiveness. The Guidelines for Members and Employees Engaging in Adjudication are published on this website.
Adjudicative CommitteeThe Adjudicative Committee of the Commission oversees adjudicative policies, procedures and practices. The Committee’s mandate is to review and periodically evaluate the Commission’s adjudicative procedures and practices and recommend improvements, as appropriate, to the Commission.
In general, the Adjudicative Committee works to ensure that the Commission’s adjudicative policies, procedures and practices are independent, effective and fair.
Independent Adjudicative CounselIndependent Adjudicative Counsel provide advice and support to the Commission’s adjudicative panels with respect to hearings and related matters.
In addition, Independent Adjudicative Counsel assist the Commission in the development of adjudicative policy and procedural practices. Independent Adjudicative Counsel report to the Secretary to the Commission.