HC Deb 08 July 1926 vol 197 cc2229-30

asked the Minister of Pensions whether in any circumstances the widow and children of a man who died of his war disability are eligible for pension, or allowances from the Special Grants Committee, if the marriage took place after the origin of the disability or the man's discharge from the Services?

The MINISTER of PENSIONS (Major Tryon)

It has always been a principle of the Pension Warrants that the responsibility of the State should be limited to the man's family obligations as existing at the date of contraction of the war disability. Clearly, therefore, no pension or allowance can be granted, either by the Ministry or the Special Grants Committee, where the marriage took place after the man's discharge or demobilisation. This must also be the normal position where the marriage took place before discharge, but after the man had been removed from duty on account of the fatal disability, but very exceptional cases of this kind would be specially considered.


Do I understand that the Minister means by that reply that if a man marries after his disability, he only does so at the risk of placing his wife at a greater disadvantage than would have been the case had he not joined the Army and fought for his country?


The responsibility of the State is limited to the man's family obligations at the date that he contracted the disability.


Is not the responsibility to the man and to the man's wife, and if the man's wife is to be treated in this way, is she not at a disadvantage as compared with one who has married a civilian?


Does not the reply given by the right hon. Gentleman go to show that this man is penalised because he was a soldier in the British Army during the War?


No. It shows that, he was fully compensated according to the Warrant for the disability he incurred during the War.