Feds offer new financial benefit to veterans

The Conservative government has introduced a new financial benefit, the Critical Injury Benefit (CIB), which can provide a $70,000 tax-free award for Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members and veterans.
A statement from MP David Wilkis said this benefit is open to serving soldiers and veterans who, since April 2006, experienced a severe injury or developed an acute disease caused by a sudden and single event which resulted in an immediate and severe impairment and interference in quality of life.
“This benefit would have no impact on any other benefit payable by Veterans Affairs Canada,” he said in the statement. “Unlike the Disability Award, serving CAF members and veterans would still receive this $70,000 benefit even if their medical condition never results in a permanent disability.
“The types of traumatic events that lead to the types of injuries compensated by the CIB may include, among others: motor vehicle accidents, falls, explosions; and gunshots. The defining feature is that the event was singular, and the severe, service-related impacts occurred immediately, rather than evolving over time.”
The proposed Critical Injury Benefit would be payable to currently serving CAF members and there is no time limit to apply for this benefit. It is estimated that by 2019-2020, more than 120 CAF members and veterans would receive the new Critical Injury Benefit, Wilks said.
The proposed new CIB funds would be paid directly to the CAF member and are separate and apart from disability award payments.
The Critical Injury Benefit focuses on those who need it the most: Veterans who endure sudden and severe injury or illness while in the line of duty.
Other Department of National Defence and Veterans Affairs Canada benefits already cover expenses incurred by family members who are traveling to be with the injured or ill CAF member, the statement said.
David Wilks is the MP for Kootenay Columbia riding. A member of the Conservative Party you can reach him in Ottawa (613)995-7246 or via email at david.wilks@park.gc.ca.