Jun 13, 2019

By Bob Komsic

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The family of an Ottawa man with dementia says 72-year-old Jim Holton is owed more than 18-thousand in Old Age Security payments he never got because his illness prevented him from filing the proper paperwork.
The family says the early onset of his rare form of Alzheimers – that makes it hard for the brain to process visual information – made it impossible for him to fill out the application forms 8 years ago when he turned 65.
Normally O-A-S payments kick in automatically when someone turns 65.
But because Holton was born outside Canada, he had to fill out special paperwork; a requirement that the government removed five years ago.
Holton’s wife happened to come across a stack of unopened mail and found her husband had failed to make some payments.
A visit to the bank also revealed he had not been getting his O-A-S payments.
So the paperwork was then filed, but Service Canada agreed to give the family just one year of back pay, but not all of it.
The family appealed but so far the government has not changed its position.
A cognitive and behavioural neurologist, who wrote letter on the Holton’s behalf, says as the number of Canadians with dementia rises, government and private institutions should show more leniency,
According to Alzheimer Society Canada, over half-a-million Canadians have dementia with about 25-tousand new cases diagnosed each year.
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