June 3, 2014
HALIFAX, NS July 3, 2014— Thousands of disabled Canadian Forces veterans will benefit from the Federal Court of Canada’s approval of a class action settlement agreement earlier today.
The Federal Court approved settlement of the final remaining issue in the SISIP class action lawsuit, the Government of Canada’s calculation of Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) increases. This settlement will result in an additional $38.6 million in benefits to existing and new class members.
The SISIP class action was initiated in March 2007 on behalf of representative plaintiff Dennis Manuge and all other disabled Canadian Forces veterans whose Service Income Security Insurance Plan (SISIP) Long Term Disability (LTD) benefits were reduced by the amount of their monthly Veterans Affairs Canada disability pension.
Lawyers Peter Driscoll and Dan Wallace from McInnes Cooper and Ward Branch from Branch MacMaster represented the class of disabled Canadian Forces veterans.
On April 4, 2013, the Federal Court approved an agreement between the class and the federal government, which ended the reduction going forward and provided, among other things, a refund for past reductions plus interest. The estimated total value of the settlement approved in April 2013 was $887.8 million.
As part of the approved settlement relating to COLA, the class will expand from the original 8,000 members to 14,000 members. The additional 6,000 class members are disabled Canadian Forces veterans who received long term disability benefits, but those benefits had not been reduced by a Veterans Affairs Canada benefit.
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