§ Mr. Mather
asked the Minister of State for Defence what rule applies for the pension of a widow whose husband is killed serving in Northern Ireland: (a) for a soldier with over 12 years' service and (b) for a soldier with under 12 years' service.
§ Mr. Ian Gilmour
Length of service does not affect war pensions administered by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Social Services but it does affect pensions payable under the Armed Forces occupational pensions scheme. Under present arrangements, a pension may be paid under the occupational scheme to a soldier's widow only if he had served for at least 12 years and was on a pensionable engagement. We are currently making a general review of these arrangements.