HC Deb 27 March 1913 vol 50 cc1816-7

asked whether the right hon. Gentleman is aware that it is the usual practice in Ireland for the father on the marriage of his eldest son to assign the farm, stock, and general effects thereon to the latter, reserving specifically for his wife and himself certain rights and privileges, and that if there be any dispute about the extent of these or in regard to the non-compliance of the son with the reservations in the deed they are strictly construed by the county court judge and a value put upon what is actually reserved by the father; and, seeing that in such a case the county court judge cannot take into account the carrying power or area of the farm, will he say by what right or process therefore the Local Government Board takes these matters into its consideration when fixing the income of old people who have assigned their farms under circumstances which do not come within Section 4 (3) of the Pensions Act of 1908; and can he explain by what method of calculation the Local Government Board came to the conclusion that the maintenance of Cornelius Dinneen and his wife, of Rathduane, Millstreet, both of whose claims were passed by the pensions committee, was value for over £63 a year on a farm of sixty-three acres?


The practice of marriage assignments is well known, but, while a Court of Law is only concerned with the actual reservations in the deed of assignment, the Local Government Board have to take into account all the benefits and privileges enjoyed by the claimant in virtue of his residence on the farm. As regards Dinneen's case, I have nothing to add to my previous answer.