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6.0 Financial Benefits

The Financial Benefits Program provides economic support to eligible Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Veterans, survivors, spouses/common-law partners and dependants for the economic impact that a military career ending and/or service-related injury or death can have on a Veteran's ability to earn income, advance in a career or save for retirement. Support is provided to those approved for the Rehabilitation Program; those who have completed the program and have not yet found employment; those who were eligible for the program but are unable to participate due to permanent and severe impairment; and those who have received a Disability Award for a physical or mental condition which causes permanent and severe impairments for which rehabilitation services have been approved. Compensation is provided in the form of monthly income support payments.

Earnings Loss Benefit (ELB)

The Earnings Loss Benefit Program recognizes the economic impact a military career-ending or service related disability may have on a Canadian Armed Forces Veteran's ability to earn income following release from the Canadian Armed Forces. To meet their basic needs, eligible CAF Veterans participating in Veterans Affairs Canada's Rehabilitation Program are provided with temporary income replacement in the form of a monthly allowance so that a participant's income does not fall below 90% of gross pre-release military salary. Where a Veteran who had been participating in the Rehabilitation Program is not able to participate in suitable gainful employment, the support continues until the Veteran reaches the age of 65. April 1, 2019, Pension for Life (PFL) was introduced. As a result, Earnings Loss Benefit is one of the six financial benefits replaced by the Income Replacement Benefit.

Table 6.1 Earnings Loss Benefit RecipientsFootnote 1 and Expenditures

Earnings Loss Benefit Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Temporary Recipients 7,375 9,193 7,729 - - -
Extended Recipients 4,250 5,677 9,805 - - -
Total: Recipients (Veterans and Survivors) 11,625 14,870 17,534 - - -
Expenditures (in $ millions) $269.9 $420.1 $527.7 $13.9 $7.0 $0.3
Earnings Loss Benefit ForecastFootnote 2Footnote 3Footnote 4
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Temporary Recipients - - - - -
Extended Recipients - - - - -
Total: Recipients (Veterans and Survivors)Footnote 5 - - - - -
Expenditures (in $ millions) $50.3 $5.0 $44.9 $5.0 $5.0

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

Career Impact Allowance (CIA)

The Career Impact Allowance Program recognizes the economic impact on employment potential and career advancement caused by severe and permanent service-related disabilities. The program ensures that eligible Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Veterans with severe permanent impairments have an income sufficient to meet basic needs. A monthly allowance is payable to CAF Veterans who received a Disability Award for physical or mental health problems that are creating a permanent and severe impairment and for which rehabilitation services have been approved. As of April 1, 2017, a new grading scheme was implemented for CIA, which gave access to higher grade levels for some clients. The result is that a greater proportion of clients are in Grades 1 and 2 than previous to the change. April 1, 2019, Pension for Life (PFL) was introduced, as a result, the Career Impact Allowance has become the Additional Pain and Suffering Compensation.

The other part of the Career Impact Allowance that recognizes and compensates Veterans for their barriers to establishing themselves in post-service life as a result of service-related permanent and severe impairment will become the new Additional Pain and Suffering Compensation. It will have three grade levels that will result in non-taxable payments to the Veteran for life. This will fall under the Disability Benefits program.

Table 6.2 Career Impact Allowance Recipients and Expenditures

Career Impact Allowance Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Recipients (Veterans) 6,011 7,801 12,805 - - -
Recipients Receiving CIA Supplement 3,410 4,372 6,956 - - -
Expenditures (in $ millions) $79.7 $123.1 $189.0 $0.0 $0.1 $0.0

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

Supplementary Retirement Benefit (SRB) Program

The Supplementary Retirement Benefit Program compensates eligible Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Veterans for lost opportunities to contribute to retirement pensions because they are unable to work following their release from the Canadian Armed Forces. Veterans must have been assessed as totally and permanently incapacitated during their participation in Veterans Affairs Canada's Rehabilitation Program and eligible for extended Earnings Loss benefits. The benefit, a lump-sum payment equal to 2% of the total amount of Earnings Loss benefits that was paid to the Veteran before income offsets, is generally paid when the Veteran reaches the age of 65. Survivors of Veterans who die as a result of a service-related injury or disease are also eligible for this benefit, payable after the Veteran would have reached the age of 65 years. April 1, 2019, Pension for Life (PFL) was introduced. As a result, the Supplementary Retirement Benefit (SRB) Program, along with the Retirement Income Support Benefit (RISB) have been consolidated into the Income Replacement Benefit under the Income Support Program.

Table 6.3 Supplementary Retirement Benefit Recipients and ExpendituresFootnote 6

Supplementary Retirement Benefit Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Recipients (Veterans) 76 79 151 10,333 181 132
Expenditures (in $ thousands) $306 $312 $613 $40,592 $909 $757
Supplementary Retirement Benefit ForecastFootnote 7Footnote 8
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Recipients (Veterans) 230 140 - - -
Expenditures (in $ thousands) $1,979 $764 $0 $0 $0

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

Retirement Income Support Benefit (RISB)

The Retirement Income Security Benefit provides eligible Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Veterans and survivors with life-long financial stability for moderately to severely disabled individuals through a monthly income security payment beginning at age 65. This benefit tops up a Veteran’s total annual income to at least 70% of what he or she received in financial benefits from Veterans Affairs Canada. As of April 1, 2019, Pension for Life (PFL) was introduced. As a result, the Retirement Income Support Benefit (RISB), along with the Supplementary Retirement Benefit (SRB) Program have been consolidated into the Income Replacement Benefit under the Income Support Program.

Table 6.4 Retirement Income Support Benefit Recipients and Expenditures

Retirement Income Support Benefit Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Recipients 72 124 183 - - -
Expenditures (in $ millions) $0.5 $0.9 $1.6 $0.1 $0.0 $0.0
Retirement Income Support Benefit ForecastFootnote 9Footnote 10
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Recipients - - - - -
Expenditures (in $ millions) $0.1 $0.1 $0.1 $0.1 $0.1

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

Canadian Forces Income Support (CFIS) Program

The Canadian Armed Forces Income Support Benefit ensures that eligible Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Veterans have a minimum level of income to meet basic needs while they are engaged in job search activities. The program provides a monthly temporary income support to low income CAF Veterans who have completed Veterans Affairs Canada's Rehabilitation Program and are capable of achieving suitable gainful employment but have not yet obtained employment. This program is also available to survivors or orphans of Veterans in certain circumstances. April 1, 2019, Pension for Life (PFL) was introduced. As a result, Canadian Forces Income Support along with the Income Replacement Benefit, fall under the Income Support Program.

Table 6.5 Canadian Forces Income Support Recipients and Expenditures

Canadian Forces Income Support Recipients and Expenditures Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Recipients 64 78 86 95 106 105
Expenditures (in $ millions) $1.1 $1.5 $1.5 $1.9 $2.1 $1.5
Canadian Forces Income Support Recipients and Expenditures ForecastFootnote 11
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Recipients 120 130 135 145 155
Expenditures (in $ millions) $2.4 $2.8 $3.1 $3.3 $3.6

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

War Veterans Allowance (WVA) Program

The War Veterans Allowance Program is a form of financial assistance available to eligible Veterans, Merchant Navy Veterans, qualified civilians and their survivors, dependants and orphans. In recognition of war service, qualified persons are provided with a regular, monthly income to meet basic needs. Eligibility for War Veterans Allowance is determined by the war time service of a Veteran or qualified civilian, the age or health, family income and residency. As well, as surviving spouse, a surviving common-law partner or orphan may qualify for War Veterans Allowance.

Table 6.6 War Veterans Allowance Recipients

War Veterans Allowance Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Veterans 355 323 274 198 148 140
Survivors 1,796 1,572 1,376 1,193 1,026 918
Total: Recipients 2,151 1,895 1,650 1,391 1,174 1,058
War Veterans Allowance ForecastFootnote 12
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Veterans 120 90 70 60 50
Survivors 910 810 720 640 570
Total: Recipients 1,030 900 790 700 620

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

Table 6.7 War Veterans Allowance Expenditures

WVA Expenditures (in $ millions) Actuals as of March 31, 2021 YTD
Dec 2021
2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20 2020–21
Veterans $1.0 $1.1 $1.2 $0.7 $0.5 n/aFootnote 14
Survivors $5.5 $5.0 $4.6 $3.9 $3.4 n/aFootnote 14
Budget Implementation Act Payments - - $0.0 $0.0 $0.0 n/aFootnote 14
Total: ExpendituresFootnote 13 $6.5 $6.1 $5.7 $4.6 $3.9 $2.5
War Veterans Allowance (in $ millions) ForecastFootnote 15
2021–22 2022–23 2023–24 2024–25 2025–26
Veterans $0.4 $0.3 $0.3 $0.2 $0.2
Survivors $3.1 $2.8 $2.5 $2.3 $2.1
Total: ExpendituresFootnote 13 $3.5 $3.1 $2.8 $2.5 $2.3

Source: Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Services Branch

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