§ Mr. McENTEE
asked the Minister of Health the number of claims outstanding for pensions under the Widows', Orphans', and Old Age Contributory Pensions Acts; and the average time taken to deal with a widow's claim to pension and the claim of an insured person to old age pension?
Sir H. YOUNG
The number of claims for pensions under the Widows', Orphans', and Old Age Contributory Pensions Acts awaiting decision in England and Wales on 15th December was 24,999. The average time taken to deal with a claim for a widow's pension under the Contributory Pensions Act,1096W 1925, is 26 days, and for a widow's pension under the Act of 1929, 45 days, while for an old age pension the average period is 35 days. I would remind the hon. Member that in the case of the last two pensions, the claim for pension may be made at any time within four months prior to the date on which the specified age is reached.