Eligible Veterans can apply to have home support and personal care services covered through the Veterans Independence Program (VIP). A Second World War Veteran was out of pocket more than $43,000 for these expenses when he reached out to the OVO to see what could be done.
The Veteran had other expenses covered by VIP; however, when he (and family members) called VAC on numerous occasions and asked about personal care or home care expenses they were told he was receiving all the benefits that he was entitled to. Four years later the Veteran learned during a hospital stay that in fact he was eligible for this coverage.
The Veteran’s Power of Attorney called VAC and he received partial reimbursement. However, both felt that he should be fully reimbursed. After receiving multiple refusals from VAC, they contacted the OVO for help.
We found that this Veteran was treated unfairly in two ways: he was not appropriately informed of his eligibility, and VAC’s reimbursement was only a fraction of his costs. As a result of the OVO’s intervention, VAC agreed to reimburse the Veteran for the entire four-year period. The Veteran was grateful to the OVO for their help, and happy when his life savings were restored.
If you are dealing with Veterans Affairs Canada, you have the right to be treated with respect, dignity, fairness and courtesy. The Veterans Bill of Rights sets out your right to fair treatment by VAC. If you feel that any of your rights have not been upheld or a decision is unfair, you have the right to make a complaint to the Veterans Ombud.
The Veterans Ombud operates independently of VAC and we are impartial. We don’t take sides. We will listen to you. We will review your file with you and communicate with you in clear language so you can understand your options. We will evaluate how you were treated, how the process was followed and whether the outcome is fair. If we find that there is something unfair in your case, we will advocate for fairness on your behalf.