HC Deb 18 November 1930 vol 245 cc219-20

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Scotland the num- ber of claims to widows' pensions which were disallowed but afterwards allowed on account of the judgment of the Court of Session in the case of Kerr; and whether any steps have been taken to allow appeals in all cases where claimants have asked for reconsideration in view of the Kerr judgment and the Department have ruled against the applicant?


I am informed that so far as can meantime be ascertained nine widows' pensions fall to be allowed as a result of the Court of Session decision referred to. Inquiry is still proceeding in a few other cases. As regards the second part of the question, many applicants have asked for reconsideration of their claims under a misapprehension that their cases were affected by the Kerr decision and have been informed of the true position. Where, however, claims in respect of cases to which the decision does apply have been refused by the Department on other grounds the right of appeal to the referees has in every ease been extended to the applicants.


May I ask whether steps will be taken by the Department to notify widows whose cases have been wrongly disallowed so that they may be able to have their cases reconsidered?


The whole matter is one of very great complexity. The fact is that some women applicants have benefited as a result of the Kerr decision. Others have been placed in a worse position, but I hope that in the circumstances any questions with regard to the further steps to be taken will not be pressed.

Major WOOD

Will the hon. Member remember the case of those widows who made application in the proper time and had their claims wrongly disallowed?


In every case where claims have been wrongly disallowed and it has been proved to have been wrongly disallowed as a result of the Kerr decision, steps are being taken to notify the applicants to that effect; but that is an entirely different question from the one previously put by the hon. and gallant Member.