Spouse killers shouldn't collect survivor benefits: MP

Chatham-Kent Essex MP Dave Van Kesteren announces federal funding for local harbour projects on...

Chatham-Kent Essex MP Dave Van Kesteren announces federal funding for local harbour projects on Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013. (CONTRIBUTED/ THE CHATHAM DAILY NEWS/ QMI AGENCY)

Daniel Proussalidis, National Bureau

, Last Updated: 4:51 PM ET

OTTAWA - Conservative backbench MP Dave Van Kesteren is moving to close a legal loophole that lets spouse killers collect public pension survivor benefits.

He said it's wrong that those convicted of the first or second-degree murder of their wife or husband automatically qualify for survivor payments based on the dead spouse's Canada Pension Plan or Old Age Security benefits.

"It struck me as just strange and totally unjust," Van Kesteren said.

Van Kesteren introduced a bill in the Commons on Wednesday that would disqualify anyone convicted of killing their spouse from collecting CPP or OAS survivor benefits.

Still, he doesn't point to specific cases of killers who are actually collecting these kinds of payments.

"I didn't do that research, but the research that I did do tells me that there would be approximately 30 people that would be affected by this yearly," Van Kesteren said.


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