Change of name – by-law

Type of document
Transaction instructions
Deemed approval
Last updated
July 2017
Index DA No

Legislative authorities

Information Requirements

The applicant is generally expected to provide:

  1. certified copies of:

    1. the by-law or amendment to the by-law of the federally regulated financial institution (FRFI), and

    2. the special resolution of the FRFI’s shareholders and policyholders that are entitled to vote, approving the by-law or amendment, or in the case of a fraternal benefit society, the resolution of the members entitled to vote, approving the by-law or amendment in the manner set out in the legislation;Footnote 1

  2. the proposed nameFootnote 2 of the FRFI, in English, French, or both (as required), and a name search reportFootnote 3 accompanied by an analysis in support of the applicant’s conclusion that the proposed name:

    1. is available for use in Canada, and

    2. is not prohibited by the BA, TLCA, ICA or CCAA, as applicable, and meets the requirements of any other relevant Canadian legislation; and

  3. where the proposed name of the applicant is substantially the same as that of an affiliated entity:

    1. the consent in writing of that entity, or from the controlling parent of the corporate group on behalf of that entity, to use the name,Footnote 4 and

    2. a description of the mitigants already in place, or mitigating measures that the FRFI will undertake, to avoid potential confusion in the marketplace.

Administrative Guidance

  1. When assessing an application pursuant to the Legislative Authorities, OSFI will generally take into account the factors set out in OSFI Advisory 2002-01-R1 - Corporate Names, Registered Names and Trade Names (Advisory).

  2. With respect to the Information Requirement detailed in item 2 of the “Information Requirements” above, please note that OSFI expects the applicant’s analysis to:

    1. demonstrate that the proposed name complies with each of the factors set out in the Advisory;

    2. identify any names appearing on the submitted name search report(s) that are owned or used by an entity in the applicant’s corporate group; and

    3. identify and describe any other trade names, trade-marks, or any components thereof, used by any other entity in the applicant’s corporate group that will be shared with, or form part of, the applicant’s proposed name.

  3. Where the Superintendent has approved a by-law or amendment respecting a change to the name of a FRFI, if the legislation provides, OSFI will issue amended letters patent reflecting the change of name.

  4. Please note that this approval does not in itself confer any rights in respect of corporate names or trade names that may have existed at the time the approval was granted but that did not appear on the name search report, or were not considered likely to cause confusion during the course of the application. Similarly, the approval of a change of name may not protect the FRFI from earlier or subsequent trademarks of other persons or entities. Further information on protecting a corporate name can be found on the Industry Canada website at

  5. As an alternative to changing a name through a by-law, the FRFI may change its name pursuant to amended letters patent. In terms of OSFI’s approvals processes, applications to effect a change of name though the issuance of amended letters patent are generally less expedient than a change of name through a by-law amendment. The applicant should refer to OSFI Transaction Instruction A No. 5 – Change of Name – Letters Patent if it wishes to proceed in that alternate manner.

  6. Requests for approval(s) that are addressed in this document are not subject to a service charge.Footnote 5

The information requirements and administrative guidance are intended to satisfy typical applications. They have been derived from OSFI’s experience in assessing applications. Applicants who provide all information and material requested can generally expect a more timely assessment of their applications. As appropriate to the circumstances, OSFI may request additional information, take into account other matters, impose terms and conditions, or require undertakings.


Footnote 1

Please see s. 544.1 of the ICA.

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Footnote 2

The proposed name can be reserved with OSFI for a period of 90 days pursuant to the federal legislation noted above. Please see Index A No. 20 – Name Reservation for information requirements and administrative guidance in relation to name reservation applications.

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Footnote 3

OSFI will accept a NUANS Corporate name search report, which includes a list of business names and trademarks that are similar to the name being proposed. If the FRFI conducts business in the Province of Québec, a search of the Québec Corporations Database at “Registraire des entreprises” is also required. If the FRFI will use both an English and French form of the proposed name, a name search report and corresponding analysis must be provided in respect of both forms of that name.

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Footnote 4

Please see s. 41 of the BA, s.43 of the TLCA, s. 43 and s. 731 of the ICA, and ss. 37 of the CCAA.

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Footnote 5

Please see Charges for Services Provided by the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions Regulations 2002.

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