HC Deb 03 December 1908 vol 197 cc1635-6

To ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer if the Commissioners of Inland Revenue have given instructions to the pension officers that when the officer has reported to the committee that the claimant is entitled to a pension, and the committee consider that the claimant is disqualified, the appeal, if any, should be made by the claimant; and whether, seeing that such instructions deprive the pension officer of a statutory right given to him by the Old-Age Pensions Act, he will have this instruction at once withdrawn.

(Answered by Mr. Hobhouse.) The Answer to the first part of the Question is, in the affirmative. The circumstances in which a pension officer should or should not exercise the rights he possesses under the Act appear to my right hon. friend to be a proper subject for the issue of directions by the Commissioners of Inland Revenue under Article 34 of the Regulations, and the instruction itself seems to him to be a proper one, since, if the claimant is satisfied with an adverse decision of the pension committee, he can see no reason why the pension officer should seek to interfere. He does not, therefore, propose to take any action.