Scotiabank offered its apologies and waived the $7,000 in fees that it applied to an injured soldier who broke his mortgage contract to move back to his home in New Brunswick.
Master Cpl. Martin Pitre, who served and was injured in Afghanistan, planned to move from his Ontario home near CFB Petawawa where he was stationed following his medical discharge from the Canadian Armed Forces. However, the bank didn’t offer Pitre the option to transfer his mortgage to his new home on the east coast, the mortgage for which is also through Scotiabank.
“After looking into this situation, we believe we erred in not offering Mr. Pitre the option to port his mortgage. We understand this has caused frustration and we have worked with Mr. Pitre and found a solution, which does not include a mortgage prepayment charge,” said Scotiabank.
“We are a proud supporter of our Canadian Armed Forces and we have the utmost respect for veterans and their families.”
The error stems from cuts to government funding that previously covered relocation expenses for military personnel. The military still covers the cost of a final move for its members, but in 2012 the government quietly cut funding that covered any fees or penalties that military members may incur as a result. That change could affect some 14,500 members who relocate each year.
“The provision of comprehensive and fair compensation to our [Canadian Armed Forces] members and their families must be balanced with the requirement for responsible management of public money,” the Department of National Defence said in a statement to CBC News.