B.C. to reimburse methadone patients for taking clinic fees off welfare cheques

Provincial government agrees to pay back more than $5.5 million in deducted fees

An application filed in the B.C. Supreme Court says the provincial government has agreed to pay back more than $5.5 million in fees deducted from the income-assistance cheques of methadone patients.

Details of the agreement were filed by plaintiff Laura Shaver and outline how B.C. will reimburse 70 per cent of the $7.7 million, plus interest, collected from more than 11,700 methadone patients.

A proposed class-action lawsuit was launched two years ago aimed at preventing private methadone-dispensing clinics from receiving $18.34 a month that the government allowed to be skimmed off their clients’ income-assistance payments.

The reimbursement applies to deductions made between November 2009 and July 2016, when the fees were suspended.

The court notice says the settlement agreement was reached in May, while the B.C. Liberal government was still in power, but was conditional on approval from the province’s treasury board.

The settlement is subject to court approval and will go before a judge on Friday.

Shaver’s lawyer, Jason Gratl, says the average settlement is between $400 and $500.

The B.C. government has declined comment, saying it does not speak on matters before the courts.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

RED resort announces new ski lift

Topping lift will add new ski area to resort, reduce bottleneck on Motherload chair

Update: Bodies recovered from Pend d’Oreille River crash

To help support the family, a fundraiser has been set up at Kootenay Savings in Fruitvale

South Okanagan-Kootenay MP calls federal budget ‘not bold enough’

Richard Cannings, MP for South OK and Kootenay communities says budget missed the mark

Paramedics union raises alarm over spike in out-of-service ambulances

Staffing shortages affecting service levels in Kootenays

Pilot program a good fit for Lower Columbia economic development

The B.C. Provincial Nominee Program Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot launched last week

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

B.C. lottery winner being sued by co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

‘Full worm super moon’ to illuminate B.C. skies on first day of spring

Spring has sprung, a moon named in honour of thawing soil marks final super moon until 2020

Having phone within sight while driving does not violate law: B.C. judge

The mere presence of a cell phone within sight of a driver is not enough for a conviction, judge says

Woman punched on the sidelines of B.C. soccer game

Both involved were watching the U21 game in West Vancouver from the sidelines when things got heated

Most Read