Federal Court


Unreasonable to find letter filed in support of reconsideration did not meet due diligence test

Applicant served in Regular Force of Canadian Forces. Applicant’s lumbar disc lesion was recognized as being result of service. Applicant underwent surgery. Applicant aggravated condition while trying to change position in bed. Applicant filed for disability benefits. Board found doctor’s medical opinion did not constitute credible evidence for purpose of granting disability award because of lack of reasoning and analysis on issue of causation. Appeal panel sitting in reconsideration did not admit doctor’s letter into evidence. Letter was filed as additional information in reply to appeal panel’s findings on insufficiency of reasons and vagueness of report. Application for judicial review was allowed. It was unreasonable to find letter filed in support of reconsideration did not meet due diligence test. Additional information could not have been filed before applicant learned of appeal panel’s criticism of expert. Letter provided precision sought that was essential to determinative issue.

Cossette v. Canada (Procureur General)

(Apr. 14, 2011, F.C., Scott J., File No. T-1147-10) 203 A.C.W.S. (3d) 531 (16 pp.).

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