B.C. court rules against injured veterans in fight for disability pensions

Six veterans allege they were unfairly treated during system overhaul
|payroll-reporter.com|Last Updated: 12/04/2017
A veteran holds a torch during an overnight vigil at the National War Memorial on the eve of the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, in Ottawa, April 8. REUTERS/Chris Wattie

OTTAWA (CP) — A group of injured veterans have suffered a major setback in their landmark legal battle with the federal government.

The six veterans allege that they have been unfairly treated because of a major overhaul in 2006 to the way the government compensates those injured in the line of service.

The changes included replacing lifelong disability pensions with a lump-sum payment, career training and targeted income support — a package of benefits the veterans say adds up to less than the previous pension system.

The veterans had scored a victory in 2014 when a B.C. Supreme Court justice ruled that there was enough merit to the case to proceed to trial.

But the B.C. Court of Appeal today struck down the veterans' claim in its entirety after the federal government appealed the lower court's decision.

Don Sorochan, the lawyer representing the veterans, says he will have to consult with his clients to determine whether they want to try to take the matter all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.

The Trudeau government has actually promised to reinstate some form of disability pensions for veterans, but many veterans are worried it will fall short of the previous system.

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