SEARS CANADA, FORMER WORKERS REACH BENEFITS, PENSION COMPROMISE

Jul 13, 2017

By Bob Komsic

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The Zoomers advocacy group CARP is pleased Sears Canada will extend its employee benefits and pension payments for an additional two months.
However, the group still has concerns about the pension deficit and how the company will continue to fund payments beyond September 30.
CARP’s calling for legislative changes to better protect employees.
”Canada’s bankruptcy laws must change to recognize that after employees, pensioners have top claim to any remaining assets until their pensions are fully funded,” said Wanda Morris, CARP’s Vice-President of Advocacy.
”Just because a company fails doesn’t mean its current and future pensioners should lose their retirement security too.  All Canadians bear the costs when pensioners lose retirement income.”
The retailer had initially asked permission to immediately halt payments for health and dental benefits for former employees, retirees and surviving spouses as well as the company’s special payments to Sears Canada’s pension plan.
But the retailer asked the court to reinstate or continue the health benefits until October as it restructures under court protection from creditors.
Meanwhile, the company’s also filed court documents claiming it’s ”crucial” to start liquidation sales of inventory no later than July 21 and to complete those sales by October 12.
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