§ Mr. Cooper
asked the Minister of Pensions what was the total number of allowances issued in respect of wives and children of post-disability marriages, respectively, on 31st March; and the annual cost of each.
§ Mr. Buchanan
I regret that I am unable to give up-to-date figures, and the information I have mainly relates to 1914 war pensioners where the effect of the removal of the post-disability marriage bar is readily ascertainable. The approximate numbers and annual cost at 31st December, 1947, in respect of 1914 war pensioners were as follows:
Number Annual Cost Wives … 164,000 £1,783,000 Children … 118,000 961,000
As regards pensioners of the 1939 war, my records show only the numbers and annual cost at 31st December, 1947, of cases arising before February, 1946, in which there was a post-disability marriage. The particulars for this limited period are as follows:
Number Annual Cost Wives … 26,000 £289,000 Children … 42,000 £346,000
With the introduction from February, 1946, of the provision enabling post-disability marriages within ten years after 135W discharge to be recognised, and the abolition of this time limit as from January, 1947, it became unnecessary to continue to make a distinction as regards post-disability marriages.