Veteran wins benefits in appeal


Life in the Canadian Armed Forces can be hard on the bodies of its soldiers.

One local veteran recently won compensation for arthritis in his neck based on years of service in the Airborne Squadron and Special Operations Command.

The veteran, who is not named in the decision, was turned down by Veterans Affairs Canada in 2022.

VAC suggested that any pain the soldier suffered during his service had resolved “and therefore the condition developed post-discharge.”

But that decision was reversed and the veteran will receive full benefits following a review by the Veterans Review and Appeal Board in Petawawa.

The board said the veteran’s “claimed condition” – osteoarthritis of the cervical spine (neck) – is “not in dispute.”

“Given that that the condition is degenerative in nature, the panel is satisfied that it constitutes a disability.

“The question that remains is whether the veteran’s military service caused, aggravated or contributed to the development of the claimed condition.”

The board said the veteran attributes the development of his condition “primarily to the physically demanding nature of his 43 years of military duty”…

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