ISDA’s Subscriber Members enjoy important advantages. These include:
ISDA Netting and Collateral Opinions
Only ISDA members are eligible to receive the Association’s legal opinions on the enforceability of the netting provisions of the ISDA Master Agreements. The opinions enable institutions to determine that those netting provisions effectively reduce credit risk, allowing them to exchange regulatory margin on a net basis and reduce capital requirements in many jurisdictions. The netting opinions address the enforceability of the termination, bilateral close-out netting and multibranch netting provisions of the 1992 ISDA Master Agreement and 2002 ISDA Master Agreement. ISDA has commissioned netting opinions for over 60 jurisdictions.
In addition to the netting opinions, ISDA provides members with legal opinions on the ISDA Credit Support Documents from over 50 different jurisdictions and additional opinions have been commissioned. These collateral opinions assist members in ensuring the validity and enforceability of collateral arrangements entered into pursuant to the ISDA Credit Support Documents to provide credit support for transactions under an ISDA Master Agreement, thereby facilitating the due diligence required for compliance with margin regulations and recognition of the benefits of collateral for capital purposes. Each year, ISDA commissions updates and new netting and collateral opinions for its members.
Only members can access and rely on ISDA netting and collateral enforceability opinions to meet “independent legal review” requirements under European rules on margin for non-cleared swaps. Banks and other financial institutions have relied on ISDA’s opinions for capital purposes for many years, but the European margin rules apply to a much broader range of financial counterparties, starting in March 2017.
ISDA Clearing Opinions
ISDA has commissioned over 55 clearing member and client reliance opinions with regards to the ISDA/FIA Client Cleared OTC Derivatives Addendum when used in conjunction with an ISDA Master Agreement. 42 such opinions have been published to date. The opinions address the enforceability of the close-out netting, set-off and default provisions of the ISDA/FIA Client Cleared OTC Derivatives Addendum from the perspective of the clearing member and client, respectively.
In addition, ISDA and FIA jointly commission and publish opinions addressing: (i) the enforceability of a US registered futures commission merchant’s (FCM’s) close out and netting rights when facing its customers in various jurisdictions under the FIA-ISDA Cleared Derivatives Addendum together with an underlying futures and options agreement; and (ii) the ability of customers to net against their respective FCM’s when using the FIA-ISDA Cleared Derivatives Addendum, and against the three CCPs which support the FCM model of clearing (being CME, ICE and LCH). 28 such opinions have been published, and additional opinions have been commissioned.
ISDA is also in the process of commissioning a number of clearing related opinions to assist ISDA members in applying the risk weightings under CRR Article 305. In order to apply such reduced risk weightings the client of a clearing member must have a legal opinion to the effect that it would bear ‘no losses’ on account of the insolvency of its clearing member or any of the clearing member’s clients under the laws of the jurisdiction of various related entities. All newly published clearing opinions are available to ISDA members and will continue to expand in the coming months. Access to opinions and opinion summaries are among the prime benefits of ISDA membership.
Only ISDA members are able to participate in the Association's numerous working groups, committees and task forces which serve to address issues in the rapidly evolving derivatives market.
Access to Information
ISDA members receive first notification of the numerous policy papers, response letters, market survey data, and communications on key business issues that ISDA and its consultants generate.
Discounted Rates for Publications and Conferences
ISDA members receive substantial discounts when ordering copies of the Master Agreement and supporting documents that are published by the Association and widely used to document privately negotiated derivatives transactions. In addition, ISDA members receive discount rates for conferences and seminars. Upon joining, new members receive a complimentary set of ISDA publications. Primary Contacts at member firms receive complimentary copies of all new publications upon their release.
Industry Events and Conferences
Only ISDA members are eligible to attend the Association's Annual General Meeting (AGM), the preeminent event in the derivatives and risk management industry, which features the perspectives of senior industry figures on global market and public policy issues in the derivatives business. A strong preference is given to enlisting speakers from ISDA member firms for the AGM, as well as for the Association's numerous conferences and seminars. Furthermore, ISDA member-only calls and webinars are held throughout the year to inform participants on the current industry topics.
Online Library of Interactive ISDA Documentation
The Online Library of Interactive ISDA Documentation is available exclusively to ISDA members by subscription. It is the quickest, easiest and most cost-effective way to obtain and access all key documents ever published by the Association.