Prisoner of War Compensation

Were you taken prisoner during the Second World War or the Korean War? Prisoner of War Compensation provides a monthly payment to recognize the suffering you endured as a result of your captivity.

About this program

Prisoner of War Compensation is a tax-free benefit for Veterans of the Second World War and the Korean War, who were detained or evaded capture for more than 30 days.

The compensation is based on the disability pension. A percentage of the pension amount is provided based on the period of time you were a prisoner of war. For instance, for 30 to 88 days, your compensation will be five percent.

Spouses, common-law partners and dependent children of former prisoners of war may also qualify for this compensation.


Do you qualify?

Did you serve with the Canadian Armed Forces or in the Canadian Merchant Navy during the Second World War or the Korean War?

You should apply for Prisoner of War Compensation if you:

  • were taken prisoner or detained by enemy forces for at least 30 days, or
  • evaded capture or escaped from the enemy, after being captured, for at least 30 days.

If your captivity occurred after 1 April 2006 you would qualify for the Detention Benefit.


How to apply

Apply online

If you are registered for My VAC Account, you can submit your application for this benefit online. If you aren’t registered, you can register now.

My VAC Account

Mail or in person

Download the application form. Then, drop it off at a VAC office. You can also mail your completed form directly to the address listed on the form.

Go to form

Get help with your application

The staff at any VAC office can assist you, or call us at 1-866-522-2122.


Additional information

Find out more

A prisoner of war is entitled, on application, to compensation equal to:

  1. In respect of any period spent as a prisoner of war to Japan:
    • 5% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 30 days but not more than 88 days;
    • 20% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 89 days but not more than 364 days;
    • 50% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 365 days
  2. In respect of any period spent as a prisoner of war of another power:
    • 5% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 30 days but not more than 88 days;
    • 10% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 89 days but not more than 545 days;
    • 15% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 546 days but not more than 910 days;
    • 30% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 911 days but not more than 1,275 days;
    • 35% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 1,276 days but not more than 1,641 days;
    • 40% of the maximum disability pension for periods of at least 1,642.

Former prisoners of war are also entitled to receive special awards of Attendance Allowance or Exceptional Incapacity Allowance provided that they meet the eligibility criteria.


Related programs

Attendance Allowance: Monthly payments if your health needs require personal care support.

Exceptional Incapacity Allowance: Monthly payments if your illness or injury impacts your quality of life.

Detention Benefit: A one-time payment if you were detained by an enemy, opposing force or group carrying out a terrorist activity.


Frequently asked questions

If I apply for the benefit and get declined, can I appeal?

Yes. If you are not satisfied with a decision you may apply in writing for a review. Learn more about your review and appeal options.


Are there policies for this program?

Yes. Read the policies for Prisoner of War Compensation.

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