Federal Court approves $817 million settlement for disabled Canadian veterans

The settlement affects 330,000 class members from the army and RCMP

Federal Court approves $817 million settlement for disabled Canadian veterans

The Federal Court has approved an $817 million settlement agreement, concluding a class-action lawsuit involving the underpayment of disability pension benefits to veterans of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and their survivors.

The settlement addressed grievances from January 1, 2003, to December 31, 2023, impacting over 330,000 class members. The class proceeding, initiated by representative plaintiffs Dennis Manuge, Raymond Toth, Betty Brousse, Brenton MacDonald, Jean-Francois Pelletier, and David White, accused Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) of miscalculating disability benefits by failing to properly index payments to inflation. The mismanagement resulted in significantly lower payments than what was owed over two decades.

According to the settlement terms, each affected class member is eligible for a one-time payment, representing approximately 2 percent of the total disability benefits they received during the specified period. The total compensation is estimated to be between $435 million and $817 million, depending on the number of claims processed.

Settlement payments are set to be distributed later this year, with current recipients of VAC disability pensions receiving their compensations automatically via direct deposit or cheque. However, estates, family members of deceased class members, and other beneficiaries who do not currently receive payments directly from VAC will need to submit a written claim by March 19, 2025. Claims can be submitted online through the website of KPMG, the appointed settlement administrator.

KPMG has also set up a dedicated call center to assist claimants with inquiries and to aid in the claim submission process. Interested parties can contact the call center at 1 (833) 839-0648 or find additional information on the administrator's website, including a frequently asked questions section.

"It is important to ensure that veterans receive their proper financial consideration. I am pleased that has been achieved through this Agreement and that the Class of disabled veterans will receive compensation,” said David White, the representative plaintiff.

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