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War Widows

Volume 163: debated on Monday 4 December 1989

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will review the present level of pension paid to war widows of service men who died before 31 March 1973 with a view to bringing them into line with pensions paid to war widows of service men who died on or after 31 March 1973.

Under the rules of the armed forces pension scheme the level of pensions paid to the widows of service men depends upon the terms and conditions in force at the date on which their husbands completed their service, or died in service. Changes in the rules, which became operative on 31 March 1973, applied only to personnel giving service on or after that date. In accordance with normal principles and practice for occupational pension schemes, the revised rules did not apply retrospectively, and there are no plans to change that position.