Exemption applications relating to IIROC Rules 

GN-1300-21-001
Type: Rules Notice> Guidance Note
Rule connection:
IIROC Rules
11.1 General Exemptive Relief
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Contact:

General Counsel’s Office
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Executive Summary

Effective Date: December 31, 2021 

IIROC Rules provide for exemptions to be granted from the rules in certain circumstances. Generally, exemptions are at the discretion of the IIROC Board of Directors or a District Council depending on the substance of the exemption request. The general exemption provision is Rule 1302. This rule permits the Board to exempt a Dealer Member (Dealer)  from any IIROC Rule where it is satisfied that to do so would not be prejudicial to the interests of Dealers, their clients or the public. In granting an exemption, the Board may impose such terms and conditions, as it considers necessary. In addition to the general exemption provision, certain IIROC Rules contain specific exemption provisions.

This Guidance Note sets out information on how to make an exemption application and related matters. It applies to all applications for exemptions from IIROC Rules1 , other than certain proficiency requirements.

  • 1The Universal Market Integrity Rules are a separate rule set from the IIROC Rules and follow separate processes relating to the granting of rule exemptions.
  1. Introduction and purpose

The IIROC Rules provide for exemptions to be granted from the rules in certain circumstances. Generally, exemptions are at the discretion of the IIROC Board of Directors (the Board) or a District Council (each a Decision Maker) depending on the substance of the exemption request. The general exemption provision is section 1302 of the IIROC Rules. This rule permits the Board to exempt a Dealer from any Rule where it is satisfied that to do so would not be prejudicial to the interests of Dealers, their clients or the public. In granting an exemption, the Board may impose such terms and conditions, as it considers necessary. In addition to the general exemption provision, certain Rules contain specific exemption provisions.

This Guidance Note sets out information on how to make an exemption application and related matters. It applies to all applications for exemptions from IIROC Rules, other than proficiency requirements.

For information on requesting exemptions from the Universal Market Integrity Rules (UMIR), please refer to UMIR 11.1.2

  1. Submission of applications

All applications are to be sent to

IIROC
Attention: General Counsel’s Office
121 King St. West Suite 2000
Toronto, Ontario
M5H 3T9
[email protected]

  1. Content and form

There is no prescribed form for applications but each must be in writing, and include the following:

  • name of applicant and category of IIROC membership
  • applicable IIROC Rule
  • relevant facts
  • details of any pre-application discussions the applicant had with IIROC
  • reasons for the application
  • rationale supporting the application, including policy arguments or previous IIROC decisions
  • supporting documentation.

An applicant may request its application be kept confidential, and if doing so must provide supporting rationale. The request for confidentiality will be at the discretion of the applicable Decision Maker. 

The applicant must certify the truth of the facts contained in the application.

  1. Withdrawal

An applicant may withdraw its application at any time prior to a decision being made on the application.

  1. Review process

Upon receipt of an application, an IIROC staff member (the Exemption Lead) will be assigned to lead the application review process, which will be conducted in accordance with IIROC’s internal procedures. 

The Exemption Lead will advise the applicant that the review process has started, and that the applicant may be contacted if further information or clarification is required. The applicant will be contacted  by the Exemption Lead if terms and conditions are being proposed as part of the decision, or if IIROC staff is recommending that the application be denied.

  1. Decisions and publication

Once a decision has been made by the Decision Maker, the applicant will be advised of the outcome. 

Subject to confidentiality, exemptions will be made public based on the following considerations:

  • whether the exemption requested is novel
  • whether other Dealers may benefit from the same exemption.

Published decisions will be in one or more of the following formats:

  • full disclosure
  • redacted (with confidential information removed)
  • no-names (with the Dealer name removed)
  • summary (with or without the Dealer’s name)
  • as part of the annual exemption summary notice.3
  1. Applicable Rules

IIROC Rules this Guidance Note relates to:

  • section 1302.
  1. Previous Guidance Note

This Guidance Note replaces IIROC Notice 18-0080 -  Technical Notice – Exemption applications relating to IIROC Dealer Member rules (April 12, 2018).

  1. Related documents

This Guidance Note was published under Notice 21-0190 - IIROC Rules, Form 1 and Guidance.

  • 2See IIROC Notice 15-0191 Obtaining a Trading Exemption or Rule Interpretation for information on the exemption process for UMIR.
  • 3For example, see IIROC Notice 17-0056 Exemptions Granted by IIROC in 2016.