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A farmer has complained that La Financière agricole du Québec took away his right to the Farm Income Stabilization Insurance (ASRA) program.
La Financière issued a refusal because the citizen had not participated in a cost production study. According to him, La Financière had not sent him a letter about the refusal or the consequences of not participating in the study.
In addition to no longer qualifying for ASRA, the citizen has to pay a $19,000 penalty.
It is crucial that citizens have the right to have unfavourable decisions reviewed if that is what they wish. The Québec Ombudsman asked La Financière agricole du Québec to allow and carry out a review of its decision, taking into account the citizen’s arguments.
La Financière agreed to act on the Québec Ombudsman’s request. The agency recognized citizens’ right to a review in such a situation, but the initial decision was upheld anyway.
Furthermore, the Québec Ombudsman’s intervention prompted La Financière agricole du Québec to adjust its procedures so that all creditors are notified of the last notice transmitted and have enough turnaround time to help the insured before the final deadline.