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VAC Return to Lifetime Pensions Discussion

dunlop303

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Exactly, the gap is just too big. Now, they do take into account what you have already received but it does not apply to pain and suffering. That calculation applies to the Pension for Life amount ie. fund number 3. Which cannot be taken in lump sum.

Now we wait,
 

BDTyre

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Maybe I missed it somewhere, but where does it outline the criteria used to determine if you are eligible for a monthly amount if you've already received a disability award. Is it based on the percent you were awarded (as they use two people at 20% as an example) or is it based on type of injury or how it affects quality of life? Apologies if I did miss it...I just can't seem to see it now.
 

dunlop303

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It doesn't, your not missing it. Based on vauge answers from VA, they have nkt
 

Teager

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Well this article should prove there's no big chunk of money coming. All of this PFL costs the government nothing and saves them money

Ottawa to save money with new veterans' pension plan, despite saying it will cost billions


GLORIA GALLOWAY PARLIAMENTARY REPORTER
OTTAWA
PUBLISHED NOVEMBER 6, 2018 UPDATED 2 MINUTES AGO


The federal government will save nearly $500-million over five years as a result of its move away from lump-sum payments to monthly pension payments for life for disabled veterans. But Ottawa is not committing to using those savings to close gaps so that all former military personnel are compensated equally.

The lifetime pensions, a Liberal campaign promise, have been targeted by critics who say they fail to bring equality to a system in which veterans who applied for benefits in 2006 or later get less compensation than those who applied in earlier years.

When the pensions were unveiled four days before Christmas last year, the government said they “represent an additional investment of close to $3.6-billion to support Canada’s Veterans.”

And on Jan. 31, Seamus O’Regan, the Minister of Veterans Affairs, told the House of Commons: “With our recent announcement of a Pension for Life, this government’s total investment in veterans in 2½ years is $10-billion” – a figure that includes the $3.6-billion for the pensions.

But the “additional” money for Pensions For Life, which come into effect in April, 2019, will be not be spent any time soon.

In fact, the government predicts in its most recent budget it will save $84-million in the next fiscal year and more than $100-million in each of the next four years as a result of the pensions program.

The savings are emphasized in the accompanying regulations, which were published in August.

Treasury Board guidelines dictate that a cost-benefit analysis looking forward 10 years must be included in regulations for any new federal program, unless that program will cost less than $1-million annually or $10-million total. But there was no cost-benefit analysis attached to the Pensions For Life regulations.

Veterans Affairs Canada explained in an e-mail to The Globe and Mail that the department was not required to produce anything more than the analysis for programs that will have a low financial impact.

Disabled veterans who applied for benefits prior to 2006 receive regular pension payments. The New Veterans Charter replaced those pensions with a system based, in large part, on lump-sum payments that now pay up to a maximum of $365,4000 – payments that vets said were far less than the value of the regular payments for pre-2006 veterans.

The government says the lifetime pensions that start next year will pay newer veterans who choose them over lump-sum payments as much or more than the value older veterans receive in their regular payments. But veterans advocates, including Sean Bruyea, have done calculations to show that a significant disparity will still exist – and a Library of Parliament analysis has confirmed that is the case.

Had the government given the money that will be saved “directly to veterans, it not only would have granted parity to veterans, but it would also have fulfilled their Liberal campaign promise to reinstate lifelong pensions” like those offered under the Pension Act, Mr. Bruyea said.

“The political rhetoric around spending $3.6-billion on this program is really quite farcical,” he said. “At the very least, the costs of these new programs are cancelled out by old programs. This is a cost-savings venture for these guys."

Officials with Veterans Affairs explained in a recent phone call with The Globe and Mail that the government says the new regular-pensions program will cost an estimated $3.6-billion because, over the lifetimes of disabled veterans who are currently in the system or of those who are injured within the next five years, the pensions are predicted to collectively pay out that much more than the lump-sum payments.

The $3.6-billion is money that has been earmarked for future benefits for veterans, and the amount will change, the officials say, as new veterans apply for benefits and as others die.

But, because the lump-sum payments will stop, “we will draw down less cash” on an annual basis, said Christina Hutchins, the department’s director-general of finance. “So, when I net that out, the overall cost is insignificant.”

Mark Campbell, a severely disabled Afghanistan veteran who was part of a group that took the government to court in an unsuccessful bid to achieve parity with the Pension Act veterans, said he was surprised to find out that the Pensions for Life will not cost the government anything, “when the Minister has been trumpeting all of the new monies that have been injected into veterans' benefits, Pensions For Life being the centrepiece."

And Phil McColeman, the Conservative critic for veterans affairs, said it’s clear that the Pensions For Life are a “shell game” and that “there is no real additional money being added into the system.”

Mr. O’Regan accused Mr. Bruyea in a column in an Ottawa newspaper called The Hill Times earlier this year of “stating mistruths,” making “numerous other errors,” and writing to “suit his own agenda” when the veterans' advocate asserted that the Pensions For Life would still leave newer veterans with less compensation than those who applied for benefits before 2006.

But bureaucrats with Veterans Affairs have said Mr. Bruyea’s figures are largely correct. And Mr. Bruyea is now taking Mr. O’Regan to court, seeking $25,000 for the damage he says the minister’s column has done to his reputation.




https://www.theglobeandmail.com/politics/article-government-will-save-money-on-veterans-new-pensions-for-life-despite/?fbclid=IwAR0ktoKtNqjur9X2cRMNShP4a9Y7zcofA14MQCQJOw2RQvbqzh4GbVYoFhg


 

meni0n

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This is weird because their own factsheet states that it would be possible to take PSC as a lump sum.

www.veterans.gc.ca/GCWEB/pdf/Factsheets/PSC-2017.pdf

Sent from my LG-H873 using Tapatalk

 

dunlop303

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It reads depressing but its not, the reason they do not need the cash up front is because there calculation again assumes everyone will take monthly payments. And with that logic They can spread that one out literally over 20-30 years. Its just dumb accounting to finance the full sum just to slowly pay it out over three decades when the money can be used elsewhere. The lump sums will be case by case.

Last time I spoke to my CM they were being trained in how to calculate the individual cases to the new benefits. Last time she said she could provide actual amounts, Monthly vs Lump sum (for pain and suffering, not income replacement ect)... for comparisons so its not a last minute decision in January.

They usually sand bag a bit so I followed up again today, that was mid sept. I'll share responses with the group.

PS, that article is click bait, sure if you only account for the monthly payments vs a lump sum disability award of course its cheaper over 5 years. The exact opposite argument can be made if the comparison is made over 20 years... ex; %100 disability lump sum today - 360,000 vs. %100 disability monthly payments - using lauren's case study again as an example - Pain and suffering; 1,110 per month x 12 = 13,320 x 5 years = 66,600. Plus additional pain and suffering; 960 per month x 12 = 11,520 x 5 years = 57,600 = 124,200 so terrible reporting to anger the mob says how awefull, they are spending in this case, 235,800 less in 5 years! they are cutting %66 percent of costs!

Come on, that is the exact opposite purpose of this. using my life expectancy the real number is 13,320 x 33 = 439,560 + 11,520 x 33 = 380,160 = total of 819,720 ie an increase of 459,720 / 227% of what its worth today. Even the lump sum option, is about 185% more.

Crunch the numbers and read between the lines. Because the reporters definitely will not do the math. I get it, im used to getting disappointing news too but they have put out too much information to ignore. Read the case studies it will help clarify, I wish they would have just been transparent about the lump sum options, that's where they lost everyone's confidence.

Remember a huge part of this is income replacement, which is not available in lump sum and in laurens case is 3,820 per month / 2.469 million over her life. They don't have to spend all of that upfront because its a monthly benefit, the reporter biased the heck out of her article by conveniently not mentioning that. They have to budget the full amout ie 10 billion, but thats over 30 years of monthly payments.
 

dunlop303

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You can, but not the income replacement which makes up the majority of the budget. and the lump sums are capped at 360k vs lifetime amounts of 800k +++ so they save over 50% of their budget per person for those who opt for lump sums, but, they need to budget for the worst case scenario - where we all opt for the lifetime payments.
 

dunlop303

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To be fair though, I have to admit. This only really add's significant money at 100% disability ratings, anything under 55-65% may have disappointing conversion rates.
They really need to be forthcoming on their calculation methods, and what the qualifier is for the additional pain and suffering. I really hope its not the critical injury benefit, because the qualification for that is a joke. I was in role 3 Kandahar for three weeks, in landshtule germany for almost a month, and in a local hospital for a week before being sent home to be taken care of by my parents for 4 months, and rated at 100% but I didn't qualify,, as role three and landshtule are not considered critical care facilities... - are you f'ing kidding me, role three is gruesome on a good day. Great doctors, but that's where the most serious cases go, and the ones they cant stabilize go to landshtule! W  T  F

Venting complete, that one still pisses me off.
 

Teager

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dunlop303 said:
To be fair though, I have to admit. This only really add's significant money at 100% disability ratings, anything under 55-65% may have disappointing conversion rates.
They really need to be forthcoming on their calculation methods, and what the qualifier is for the additional pain and suffering. I really hope its not the critical injury benefit, because the qualification for that is a joke. I was in role 3 Kandahar for three weeks, in landshtule germany for almost a month, and in a local hospital for a week before being sent home to be taken care of by my parents for 4 months, and rated at 100% but I didn't qualify,, as role three and landshtule are not considered critical care facilities... - are you f'ing kidding me, role three is gruesome on a good day. Great doctors, but that's where the most serious cases go, and the ones they cant stabilize go to landshtule! W  T  F

Venting complete, that one still pisses me off.

I would appeal that decision. I went to role 3 and Landshtule and then hospital/rehab hospital for a few months but qualified and I'm 66%. Sounds like someone didn't understand your application very well.

 

dunlop303

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Thanks Teager, I sent this off to BPA - last time I worked with them we changed VA's entitlement decision, hoping for the same:

Good Afternoon,

I am looking for assistance on appealing what I believe was an unjust denial of the Critical Injury Benefit due to criteria interpretation discretion.
My injury was immediate, severe, and was treated in three medical facilities, two of which I would consider critical care however VAC disagrees - Role III medical facility in Kandahar to which I was medivaced from the site of my Tank IED strike location via Blackhawk as a Priority Alpha, after approximately a week I was transferred to Landshtule Germany, also which I believe should be considered critical care. I spent roughly two weeks there, upon repatriation I spent roughly an additional week in the Pembroke Hospital. After which I was transported to my parents home so they could provide care until I was able to move under my own power / dress / buy and prepare food / this was over three months in duration. I am rated at %100 for a combination of Physical; Broken Pelvis, Coccyx and Diffuse Axonal Injury (tears between the white and grey matter in the brain) which VAC later labelled as TBI and Mental; Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Generalized Anxiety and Depression Disorder. I am on medication for the pain in my pelvis to this day, the brain injury is causing a multitude of numbness complications - for which I cannot claim due to my rating of %100, as well as the permanent mental health challenges.

These injuries were immediate, severe and in most cases permanent. Common sense vs interpretation of entitlement
 

RobA

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dunlop303 said:
It reads depressing but its not, the reason they do not need the cash up front is because there calculation again assumes everyone will take monthly payments. And with that logic They can spread that one out literally over 20-30 years. Its just dumb accounting to finance the full sum just to slowly pay it out over three decades when the money can be used elsewhere. The lump sums will be case by case.

Yeah, they have absolutely no idea how many ppl will choose the lump sum, and since the pension is nominally more money, they'll obviously do the accounting based on everyone taking the pension, whether they do or not. So of course they'll save money on paper, they're only accounting for $12,000/yr for every vet @ 100%.

I'm about 50/50 on this idea that we're due life changing money in April, but nothing in that article suggests otherwise made me more pessimistic.

 

RobA

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CanadianTire said:
Is it based on the percent you were awarded (as they use two people at 20% as an example) or is it based on type of injury or how it affects quality of life?

Both, really. The % number is the one they'll use to determine your compensation. But the % number is based on the type of injury/quality of life
 

prairefire

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This may seem like a silly question but is the PFL and Pain  and Suffering Compensation the same thing or 2 different benefits?
 

Teager

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prairefire said:
This may seem like a silly question but is the PFL and Pain  and Suffering Compensation the same thing or 2 different benefits?

Yes, they are the same. The PFL is the pain and suffering compensation given for life as a monthly payment or if one chooses a lump sum.
 

brihard

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Teager said:
Yes, they are the same. The PFL is the pain and suffering compensation given for life as a monthly payment or if one chooses a lump sum.

More accurately, Pain and Suffering Compensation is a portion of the Pension For Life (PFL).

PFL is an umbrella descriptor that includes two broad categories: Non taxable financial benefit in recognition of disability (the Pain and Suffering Compensation plus the Additional Pain and Suffering Compensation), and taxable financial benefit in replace lost income, the Income Replacement Benefit.

The PSC is derived directly from your disability percentage.

The APSC stacks on top of PSC. It has three grades, and is granted based on assessment of your barriers to recovery... It’s basically the new version of Permanent Incapacitation Allowance.

The Income Replacement Benefit is basically the new version of Earnings Loss Benefit. It’s for people who cannot make a meaningful income and face barriers to reestablishment. It will replace 90% of your pre-release income, and will be reduced by any pension you receive, and by employment income after your first $20,000.

Basically, the Pension Act did not distinguish between those who could still work and make money and those who could not. Strictly %disability based. The new benefits offer less to people who are still able to work and earn an income, and in many cases offer more to those who are the most seriously injured and cannot.
 

upandatom

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Howie1 said:
I'm pretty sure based on the examples on the Vac pages of the different scenario's it already shows people getting way over the 360k amount. From what it looks like they are completely different pots of money and would have to be, otherwise there would be no money left for monthly payments until a person reaches age 83/84. From the way it looks to me and correct me if i am wrong, the 360k was only for the NVC people. Going forward everyone will get the same amounts as anyone who got a lump sum already. They will just get less in the monthly amounts/ lump sum than those injured and getting this benefit going forward. Just their case examples show this to be the case. As far as the lump sum payment option, Their Q+A faq clearly describes the option to take a lump sum.

Taken from the Vac Q+A Page:

PAIN AND SUFFERING COMPENSATION
WHAT IS THE PAIN AND SUFFERING COMPENSATION?
The Pain and Suffering Compensation is designed to recognize and compensate CAF members and Veterans for the pain and suffering they experience due to a disability caused by a service-related illness and/or injury. It is not intended to replace income, which is why the PSC is not taxable.

Based on the member or Veteran's assessed extent of disability, the PSC benefit potentially entitles Veterans up to a maximum of $1,150 a month for life. Veterans and members can also opt to cash out their payments at any time. The intent is to provide the choice of how to receive this benefit, while encouraging recipients to continue the monthly payment.

IF YOU CHOOSE THE MONTHLY PAYMENT OPTION BUT WANT TO TAKE THE MONEY AS A LUMP SUM PAYMENT AT A LATER DATE, ARE YOU ABLE TO?
Yes. You can choose to cash out the benefit and receive the balance owing, which is the difference between the monthly amount already paid and the applicable lump sum amount.

Yes, but I think the skepticism comes from the small print they posted later stating "maximum lump sum is the amount of the day this policy comes into effect" or along those lines.

ITs going to be a three tier system. They are smart if they offer a limited or decreased lump sum amount. Gotta remember, they also dont want to spend money as per previous case history.
 

Howie1

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Oh don't get me wrong. I think no matter what happens we will get screwed. We always do. They will have some sort of provision that limits anything we get or because April first is a monday and actually ends in "y" we will only get .25% of what we normally would. Or maybe they will do something different and offer up everything then say April Fools! Either way don't get your hopes up. Expect to get screwed.

I'm just too tired of having to fight non stop to really care much about it. I can only hope those that really need something good, actually get it.
 

upandatom

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Howie1 said:
Oh don't get me wrong. I think no matter what happens we will get screwed. We always do. They will have some sort of provision that limits anything we get or because April first is a monday and actually ends in "y" we will only get .25% of what we normally would. Or maybe they will do something different and offer up everything then say April Fools! Either way don't get your hopes up. Expect to get screwed.

I'm just too tired of having to fight non stop to really care much about it. I can only hope those that really need something good, actually get it.

So I had a long phone call yesterday about my issues from another post in here.

Basically, what she told me. They aren’t even going to start working on the files until April, so don’t expect anything in April.

I was blown away by this, as I have a meeting next week to go over my file with what is hopefully a CM, after getting accepted back into the Rehab program after being kicked out by my former CM.

She explained that the budgeting didn’t allow for this to happen, to allow them to prep files. It’s kinda fucked considering everyone is getting told otherwise.
 

RCR88

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I have a few questions about this Pension for Life fiasco we are all about to deal with

I released in 2010 with a 15% pay out from VAC for 40,000$ and a top up in 2017 of 7600$
With this new PFL pain and suffering compensation being 1150 a month and me being eligible for 15% of that (172.50$) per month for the rest of my life.
Are they dating the PFL back to the date of your release or dating it starting April 1, 2019

If they date it back to the day of my release and lets say the date of mortality is 80 years old  and i want to take the lump sum
That would be 12 x 172.5 = 2070$ x 60 years = 124,200$ minus what i have already been paid (47600$) = 76600$

or if its from 2019

12 x 172.5 x 50 = 103,500 - 47600 = 55900$

Does anyone have any idea how this is going to work out?

 
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