Great-West Life now provides VRSPs for businesses in Quebec

Great-West Life's VRSP is simple to implement and administer, freeing employers located in Quebec to focus on their day-to-day business. (CNW Group/Great-West Life Assurance Company)

WINNIPEG, July 18, 2014 /CNW/ - Great-West Life has introduced a simple solution for Quebec's voluntary retirement savings plan (VRSP). The province has mandated that businesses located in Quebec with five or more eligible employees will be required to offer a VRSP unless they already have another group retirement savings plan in place - such as a group registered retirement savings plan, a registered pension plan, or a tax-free savings account - that allows members to make contributions through payroll deduction. For employers who prefer to take this approach, these solutions are also available through Great-West Life.

While VRSP legislation took effect July 1, 2014, the requirement for employers to offer a VRSP will be phased in over several years depending on the size of the company.

The introduction of the VRSP coincides with recent survey data from the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) that indicates about half of Quebeckers are not properly planning for retirement.1

"The AMF survey reinforces the need for this legislated product because it offers key mechanisms to enable retirement reform in Canada without disturbing existing employer-sponsored retirement plans - key mechanisms like universal access, early enrolment, age-adjusted investment options, locked-in employer contributions for retirement, and portability," says Anthony Cardone, Regional Vice-President of Group Retirement Services for Great-West Life. "Our experience as a leading provider of group retirement services for Canadians will provide employers with a VRSP that's simple to implement and administer - freeing them to focus on their day-to-day business."

Employers are invited to watch this video to see how Great-West Life will put to work its experience as a leading administrator of group retirement plans as Quebec phases in the requirement for businesses in Quebec to offer the VRSP.*

Great-West Life's VRSP lets employees choose from clearly defined, understandable investment options. If they don't make an investment choice, their contributions will be directed into a target date fund that automatically diversifies and rebalances as employees approach their anticipated retirement dates.

Employees choose their contribution rates and for those who don't, contributions are set at a default rate that automatically increases over time. Staff will be automatically enrolled in the plan but may choose to opt out.

Great-West Life's VRSPs provide access to well-managed, comprehensive Harmonized Asset Class Funds that are multi-manager, multi-investment style and well-diversified among specific asset classes, allowing for a higher potential for investment growth and success.

Employers and advisors looking for more information about VRSPs can visit www.vrsp-greatwestlife.com. They can access details about VRSP requirements, watch videos or speak to a specialist for plan information and set-up.

About The Great-West Life Assurance Company

Great-West Life is a leading provider of group retirement plans in Canada, administering over 17,500 group capital accumulation plans and over 1.3 million plan member accounts. With more than $37.6 billion under administration, Great-West Life serves more plan sponsors than anyone else in Canada2 and provides services to nearly 6,000 companies with five to 99 members in Canada.**

* The VRSP is issued by London Life Insurance Company (London Life), a subsidiary of Great-West Life.
** As at Dec. 31, 2013                 
1 Source: AMF (Autorité des marchés financiers) Index, April 30, 2014 http://www.lautorite.qc.ca/en/press-releases-2014-corpo.html_2014_amf-index-financial-awareness-up-slightly-among-quebeckers30-04-2014-13-3.html  
2Source: 2013 CAP suppliers directory, Benefits Canada, December 2013

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SOURCE Great-West Life Assurance Company

Image with caption: "Great-West Life's VRSP is simple to implement and administer, freeing employers located in Quebec to focus on their day-to-day business. (CNW Group/Great-West Life Assurance Company)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140718_C9512_PHOTO_EN_41922.jpg

For further information:

Marlene Klassen, APR
Assistant Vice-President, Communication Services
204.946.7705