# 2014-182 - Relocation Benefits

Relocation Benefits

Case Summary

F&R Date: 2015–04–16

During a move under the Canadian Forces Integrated Relocation Program (CF IRP), the grievor obtained two bridge loans from two different financial institutions in order to access the funds necessary to take possession of his new home while awaiting the sale of his former home. While moving in, he also had to do carpentry work to have a piece of furniture installed in an upper floor of his new residence.

The grievor submitted separate requests to the Relocation Arbitration Section of the Director Compensation and Benefits Administration (DCBA) for the interest incurred on the bridge loans and reimbursement of the carpentry costs. The Arbitration Section denied the request for reimbursement of the interest charges on the grounds that the grievor had declined an advance of funds on the real estate costs, thus precluding his timely reimbursement. In another decision, the Arbitration Section denied his application for reimbursement of carpentry costs on the grounds that the grievor had already been granted a movement grant to compensate him for the claimed expenses.

The grievor filed a grievance arguing that the advance of funds he had declined was completely unrelated to the bridge loans. As for the carpentry costs, the grievor pointed out that these represented an expense arising from his move and were therefore reimbursable under the personalized component of article 1.2.05 of the CF IRP.

Concerning the bridge loans, the Initial Authority (IA) determined that the CF IRP directive did not allow for the reimbursement of more than one bridge loan. She granted partial redress, ie, reimbursement of the bridge loan with the higher interest rate. The IA noted that the grievance seeking reimbursement of the carpentry work had been filed after the deadline specified by Chapter 7 of the Queen's Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Forces and therefore decided that it was not in the interest of justice to review it.

Regarding the bridge loans, the Committee concluded that article 8.3.12 of the CF IRP directive in no way limited the number of bridge loans and that the key element was the amount borrowed, which must not exceed the available capital. The advance of funds was addressed neither in the CF IRP directive nor in the “IT'S YOUR MOVE” manual, and the grievor was not informed of this option. This cannot be referenced to deny him reimbursement or blame him for the reimbursement delay. However, the total amount borrowed by the grievor in the two bridge loans exceeded the value of the capital. The Committee concluded that the grievor was entitled only to reimbursement of the costs incurred on the portion of the loans not exceeding the available capital, until the date when his claim was finalized.

Regarding the carpentry work, the Committee noted that the various chapters of the CF IRP directive specify the funding sources and the circumstances when each of the three components comes into play. The carpentry work in question can only be taken into account under the personalized component which, in the grievor's case, consisted of the movement grant and the posting allowance, which cannot be increased under any circumstances. The Committee was of the opinion that the claimed carpentry work represented the type of expenses covered by the movement grant, which is designed to compensate various losses or expenses arising from the move. However, the Committee concluded that the grievor had not been wronged in this regard since he had received full payment of the amount of the personalized component.

The Committee recommended that the Chief of the Defence Staff order the reimbursement of the interest charges incurred on the allowable amount for which the grievor had not been reimbursed.

CDS Decision Summary

CDS Decision Date: 2015–10–23

The FA agreed with the Committee's findings and recommendation that the grievor be reimbursed for the interest charges incurred on the allowable amount on the bridge loans.

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