Home Equity Assistance

100% Home Equity Assistance in CFIRP

Posts Tagged ‘dnd

Once more, into the fray…with Michele Drapeau Law Office

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fed crt

Once again, after winning in Federal Court, our battle has been extended by Treasury Board Secretariat. We find ourselves having to take TBS back into Federal Court to finalize our claim for Home Equity Assistance. Our family has carried this load for 5 years now, won our grievances and won in federal court, but TBS continues to SPEND YOUR TAX DOLLARS denying our entitlements.

The only way we can get accountability is by voting, and taking them to court.

We are once again asking for financial support to assist with this legal battle, so that the TBS will be held accountable to follow their own policies, instead of getting away with the use of Blanket Denials for hundreds of Canadian Military families. Details available at www.healoss.wordpress.com

Donations may be made at: http://www.gofundme.com/2j18gw

Thank you so much for your continued support in this quest for Government Accountability.

T

https://healoss.files.wordpress.com/2015/06/2015-06-03-brauer-notice-of-application.pdf

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Canada supports our troops…but won’t pay them

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A member of the Canadian military has lost his bid to recover thousands of dollars when he sold his home at a significant loss after being posted to another base.

Maj. Marcus Brauer says he was told by a branch of the military Thursday that the Treasury Board had reviewed his housing claims and found the market in Alberta was not depressed at the time.

dc_red_tape02

The letter from the Director Compensation and Benefits Administration says the board determined Bon Accord was not a depressed housing market in 2010 when Brauer sold his home at a loss of $88,000.

As a result, it says Brauer is not entitled to more than the $15,000 he received for the loss.

The decision comes almost a year after a Federal Court judge ordered the Treasury Board to review its initial decision in 2012 not to grant him full compensation for the loss.

Brauer argued that housing prices dropped 23 per cent over three years and that his home 40 kilometres outside Edmonton was in an depressed market.

The dispute centres on provisions in the home-equity assistance program for military members that awards a percentage of a loss based on whether a home is in a depressed market.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/canadian-military-member-loses-bid-to-recover-losses-linked-to-home-sale-1.3067036

The Canadian Press Posted: May 08, 2015 4:02 PM AT Last Updated: May 08, 2015 4:07 PM

Court Orders Feds to Reconsider Canadian Forces Housing Compensation Policy

Brauer v. Canada (Attorney General), 2014 FC 488 (CanLII)

On May 23, 2014 the Federal Court of Canada decided the Federal Treasury Board Secretariat’s interpretation of the policy for compensating Canadian Forces members who lose money on the sale of a house due to a posting was unreasonable.

McInnes Cooper’s Dan Wallace represented Canadian Forces Major Marcus Brauer in the first Canadian court challenge of the Treasury Board’s interpretation of this policy. Major Brauer lost $88,000 when he was reposted and forced to sell his home in Bon Accord, Alberta (40 km north of Edmonton). The policy says the Secretariat will reimburse members who sell their home at a loss for 100% of the loss – if the Secretariat decides the “community” is in a “depressed market”.

For two years, Major Brauer pursued full reimbursement of his loss through the Canadian Forces and Treasury Board’s internal processes on the basis Bon Accord is a community in a “depressed” housing market. However, the Secretariat maintained that Major Brauer’s community was the entire Edmonton Metropolitan Area – not Bon Accord – which was not “depressed”, so he was not entitled to full reimbursement for his loss under the policy. Major Brauer’s only recourse was to ask the Federal Court to review the Board’s decision, find it unreasonable, and order it to reconsider it. The Federal Court did just that:

Reasonableness. For the first time, a Court decided that the Treasury Board’s decisions interpreting this policy must be reviewed on a standard of reasonableness (as opposed to correctness).

Unreasonable Interpretation. The Court decided the Treasury Board’s interpretation of the word “community” for the purpose of deciding whether the market was “depressed” would render the policy virtually meaningless – and was unreasonable.

Reconsideration. The Court did not have the power to apply the policy, so did what it could: ordered the Treasury Board Secretariat to reconsider Major Brauer’s request – but also that the “community” is Bon Accord.

Legal Costs. In a rare move, the Court also ordered the Federal Government to reimburse Major Bauer for 100% of his legal costs – a higher scale than that which courts normally order.

Government continues to deny soldiers entitlements after 5 year fight

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I have been away from the computer lately, as I have had to change jobs after 26 years. Seems that a few supervisors wanted to peek into my medical records, and they got caught. My first day back at work and I got my posting message. I could not make this stuff up!

The following link provides the current details on the Government of Canada’s latest attempt to delay and deny the relocation entitlements ordered by the Federal Court of Canada.

https://healoss.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/defendant_moving-party_s-memorandum-of-fact-and-law-9-apr-15.pdf

I encourage all military families to have a look at the lengths that the government is going through to deny us entitlements on relocations. $73,000 equity loss, over $250,000 in losses, health, career, QOL etc.

abandoned

Comments welcomed. Assessments of the Government’s motion to strike are also welcomed by the layperson, barrack room lawyer and Barrister alike.

If you think you are affected, you may contact the legal team directly at: HEAClassaction@mcinnescooper.com

Marcus Brauer

ACCESS TO INFORMATION HELP – HOME EQUITY ASSISTANCE

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As posting season is upon us, I have had multiple requests from military members who are expecting to loose a great deal of equity on their home sale. Luckily, the CAF has the Canadian Forces Integrated Relocation Policy which

Therefore, in order to gain access to government records you will need to fill out a request. You can do this online, or by mail by filling out this form http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/tbsf-fsct/350-57-nf-eng.pdf

Next: You may request information from both DND and TBS by sending requests to their ATI co-ordinator.

The DND forms get mailed to:

Director Access to Information and Privacy
National Defence Headquarters
Major-general George R. Pearkes Bldg.
101 Colonel By Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0K2

and the TBS form gets mailed to:

Access to Information and Privacy Office
Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
140 O’Connor Street
8th Floor, East Tower
L’Esplanade Laurier
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R5

Each request can cost $5, so include a cheque (usually reimbursed if you are requesting information about you only).

What to expect: I have experienced that each department will reveal different information to you. Often the ATI officer will call and ask to reword the request to save work/time, stand your ground and ensure you are NOT watering down your request. If you encounter long delays there is an office which can help resolve. For example, DND and TBS both withheld information from me using various excuses. Also information was blacked out or “under review” by another department, and never actioned. With the assistance of the Office of the Information Commissioner  you can get help with some of these roadblocks.

So, you need information about your last relocation as you are expecting to take a large (over $15,000 hit) on your equity? Here are some sample ATI’s for your use as you see fit:

“All memoranda, reports, emails, briefing notes, minutes of meetings held within DND and any letters to or  from Treasury Board for the period 1 January 2009 to 5 August 2012 on the subject of 100% Home Equity Assistance, depressed markets  or policy clarification as it applies to Edmonton and surrounding communities (e.g. Bon Accord, Morinville, St Albert).
DGCB definition of ‘community’ as it applies to the relocation policy used within IRP (e.g. E-mail Thursday, 5, July, 2012 09:43 AM LCol Gash-LCol Raney). Any communications between DCBA/DGCB and TBS demonstrating an effort to resolve the issue of defining “community” as it applies to the CF IRP. Spreadsheet, printout or any document that would show the number of claims submitted, and approved under the Home Equity Assistance (100%) between 1 January 2009 and 5 August 2012″.

Between 2006 and Aug 2012, all memos, reports, emails, briefing notes, minutes, internal and external correspondence regarding Home Equity Assistance, Bon Accord, {Major Brauer}, and the definition of ‘community’ as it applies to relocation policy.  Any documentation on depressed markets, and policy clarification of Home Equity Assistance administration of IRP”.

Drop a line if anyone needs further guidance/assistance. Do note that there are discussions that ATI requests may increase from $5 to $250 each. I myself have been advised that my last ATI would cost hundreds/thousands – but this is my information and I have a right to access it. Without having access to our own personal information, I would not have discovered that we were being cheated out of our entitlements!

Below is an excerpt from the Senate of Canada on the subject of access to our information:

“Access to Information Requests—User Fees

Hon. James S. Cowan (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, my question is for the Leader of the Government in the Senate and pertains to the proposed increased user fees for Access to Information requests.

Last Thursday, Information Commissioner Suzanne Legault testified before the House of Commons Access to Information and Ethics Committee on the funding crisis facing her office. In response, a number of Conservative Members of Parliament proposed that the solution to the office’s lack of funding would be to increase the $5 user fee charged for ATIP requests. Erin O’Toole, Member of Parliament for Durham, recommended that the government increase the fees charged to ordinary Canadians from $5 to $25 for each request, and to $200 per request from businesses, including commercial news organizations. This would mean that Canadians would be paying $25 to learn whether Mr. O’Toole’s predecessor had charged $16 for a glass of orange juice.

The Information Commissioner made it clear that increasing the cost of ATIP user fees was not, in her opinion, a good idea. She said:

. . . it is not my office that is in a crisis, it is the fact that Canadians’ right to access government information is in jeopardy, that is the real issue . . .

When your Prime Minister came to power in 2006, he promised to usher in a new era of openness and accountability. His exact words were:

We promised to stand up for accountability and to change the way government works.

Can you explain why the government is even considering charging Canadians more for information which by law belongs to them? If the government does increase user fees, does this not negate completely the government’s claim to be more open and transparent and accountable than its predecessors?”

Marcus

FIRST CANADIAN CLASS ACTION of SERVING CANADIAN ARMED FORCES MEMBERS

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A five year battle is playing out in the Canadian court system. Systematically denied relocation entitlements have left military families destroyed, homeless and bankrupt. The Treasury Board of Canada has already been caught in Federal Court however they continue to attempt to engineer a solution which will save a few bucks, and prevent soldiers from getting their entitlements.  The entire case can be found here: http://www.courts.ns.ca/Supreme_Court/documents/Statementofclaim.pdf

Written by Major Marcus Brauer

February 8, 2015 at 22:10

TBS – Celebrating 5 years of inhumane treatment of military families

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Today was one of the most difficult days so far. Submitted my application for compassionate status (a career ender) and I am coming to the conclusion that no matter how much I sell, how hard I work or how many jobs I take, I cannot repay the money.  The most frustrating part, is that it is not my fault. I’ve been carrying the HEA debt since 2010 and using all finances to buy time. Since it has been five years and TBS continues to delay and deny, I am left with little else to do but declare. Why did I not declare earlier? Here are a few reasons:

Loss of perfect credit score for 7 years;
resultant inability to relocate in future, inability to loan or co-sign loans for 5
school aged children (jeopardizing their future);
places the focus of blame on the individual, not the CAF/TBS;
subjected to repossessions and harassing collection agencies;
further personal and family humiliation;
it is against my families beliefs to pass debt onto the taxpayer; and
added stressors to an already stressful situation.

All this time, work and effort – at what price? The Treasury Board of Canada has worn me down, destroyed my life and the lives of my family.

At what price?

SYSTEMIC DELAY OF MILITARY ENTITLEMENTS ABOUT TO ENTER 5th YEAR!

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What does a family need to do in order to get a fair shake with this government? Soldiers are not second class citizens.

 

MinisterClementReMarcusBrauerJan2015

 

Please take a minute to read the attached and tweet to the President of the Treasury Board for his attention (I’ve been blocked for some reason).  Lets not waste any more taxpayer’s money fighting our own forces:  @TonyclementCPC

 

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