Service Officer

“Don’t Suffer in Silence”

If there is a danger to your life or someone else’s, please dial 911 immediately

 

Among the many services the Legion offers, none are as important at ensuring that Veterans receive the care they need. Branch 15 has a dedicated Service Officer who can provide assistance to Veterans in need.

Contact the Branch Service Officer if you or a Veteran you know needs help.

 

Veteran Services Chairman12189530_1642305069351867_6535786504398074750_n

Each Branch appoints a Veterans Services Chairman/Branch Service Officer who is available to advise and assist the Veterans, widows, ex-servicemen etc., in their communities. A branch may appoint two people to fill the Veterans Services Chair position and the Service Officer position.

The officer can be called upon to respond to a variety of questions and situations. Most Chairman are familiar with Veterans Affairs benefits, and are also aware of other Federal, Provincial and Municipal programs which exist and might be appropriate.

All information and questions brought to the Branch Service officer/Veteran Services Chairman are held in the strictest confidence.

The Veterans Services Chairman/Branch Service Officers works with the Provincial Service Officer and Counsellors at Veterans Affairs Canada to ensure that requests for assistance are referred to the attention of the proper persons or authority.

Provincial Services Officer12249601_1646588718923502_3339540536631768752_n

The services of the Provincial Service Officers are available to all Legion branches, the Legion member, or ex-service personnel and/or their dependants. You need not be a member of the Legion to use the services of a Provincial Service Officer.

The Provincial Service Officers devote most of their time to disability pension claims and are actively involved in the preparation of these claims. They also appeal and defend against negative pension decisions.

Although the Provincial Service Officer is knowledgeable on other programs provided by Veterans Affairs (such as War Veterans Allowance, Treatment benefits and the Veterans Independence program), veterans and their dependants are routinely referred to Veterans Affairs to establish their eligibility for these programs.

Referrals to the appropriate Provincial Service Officer should be made through your local veterans services chairman/branch service officer.

The Pension Act

The Pension Act is the major piece of legislation governing the award of disability pensions. Merchant Navy Veterans and Civilians are covered for benefits under the Merchant Navy Veteran and Civilian War-related Benefits Act.

Important Information

If your application for Hearing Loss disability benefits has been turned down in the past, either by Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) or by Veterans Review and Appeal Board (VRAB), you may be eligible for a partial entitlement as a result of a recent Federal Court of Appeal decision. Please contact a Provincial Service Officer in your area.

NOTE: The pension system has undergone very comprehensive changes which took effect on April 1, 2006, as a result of the passing of the New Veterans Charter / the Canadian Forces Members and Veterans Re-Establishment Compensation Act. Traditional War Veterans are unaffected by this legislation and will continue to fall under the Pension Act. Disability pensions and other services in place prior to April 1, 2006 for existing clients are also not affected by the new legislation.

The new compensation will provide lump sum awards for the non-economic aspects of the disability.

Other benefits, which may be available under the new charter, are Rehabilitation Services, Health Benefits, Job Placement Assistance, Economic Loss Support, and Case Management.

Talk to your Provincial Service Officer regarding these new benefits through VAC.

Pensions under the current system (for traditional war veterans and currents and former CF members who applied prior to April 1, 2006).
Application for pension benefits may be made through The Royal Canadian Legion, a Pension Officer at Veterans Affairs Canada or directly to Veterans Affairs Canada on the prescribed application form. The services of The Royal Canadian Legion and the Pension Officer are free and we recommend that an applicant request assistance in putting forward a claim. The services of The Royal Canadian Legion and lawyers from the Bureau of Pensions Advocates are available free of charge for Reviews and Appeals.

Pensions are a right. They are not subject to income or estate taxes. Any other income has no bearing on either the entitlement to a pension or the amount. The rank in the service does not affect the entitlement to or amount of pension.

Other Ways to Get Help

Veterans Affairs Canada 1-866-522-2122 Operational Stress Injury Social Support 1-800-883-6094
Canadian Forces Members Assistance Program 1-800-268-7708 (For Serving Members) Tema Conter Memorial Trust 1-888-288-8036 (For First Responders)
Wounded Warriors Canada 1-888-706-4808 Soldier On 1-800-883-6094