OTTAWA — The federal government says it shortchanged hundreds of thousands of veterans and their survivors over seven years, and is preparing to compensate them with a total of $165 million.
Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O’Regan says his department miscalculated adjustments to the disability pensions of 270,000 veterans between 2003 and 2010 because it didn’t properly account for a change in personal tax exemptions.
O’Regan says the problem was spotted by Veterans Ombudsman Guy Parent.
Most of the affected veterans will receive a few hundred dollars in retroactive payments, though some will receive thousands. O’Regan says given the numbers affected, some will have to wait until 2020 to get their money.
News of the error and compensation comes as Canadians across the country are preparing to mark Remembrance Day this Sunday, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
It also comes amid anger and frustration within Canada’s veteran community over their treatment by the Trudeau Liberals and Veterans Affairs Canada, including long wait times for service and the government’s refusal to bring back a previous form of disability pension.