HC Deb 26 October 1955 vol 545 cc32-3W
97. Dame Irene Ward

asked the Minister of Defence how many widows of Regular officers have applied for arrears of pensions to be paid prior to 1952 on the grounds of lack of knowledge that they were entitled to a pension; how many have been paid; and what steps are being taken to invite possible beneficiaries to submit their claims.

Mr. Selwyn Lloyd

I am afraid that the information for which my hon. Friend asks in the first two parts of her Question is not available. It could not be obtained without disproportionate expenditure of time and labour in the examination of detailed files. As to the last part of her Question, I explained to my hon. Friend in my letters of 25th and 27th July last that the Service Departments had themselves reviewed rejected claims under the widows "ordinary" pensions scheme in force before 1952, with a view to granting such claims which satisfied the new conditions, and arrears were then paid back to December, 1952. Arrears beyond that date are only paid in exceptional circumstances.