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War Pensions

Volume 407: debated on Friday 20 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many of those at present in receipt of pensions under the war pensions scheme would, if their claim had been presented under the proposed change in burden of proof, have had their claim rejected; and if he will make a statement. [119997]

We have not reviewed the cases of all those currently in receipt of a War Pension to assess how their claims would have been decided under the proposals for the new scheme. A key consideration in Ministers' final decision on the new proposals will be whether the proposed scheme arrangements could be expected to deliver fair decisions in terms of providing proper compensation for those whose illness or injury has been caused or significantly aggravated by their Service.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on progress with his reviews of the (a) war and (b) armed forces pensions scheme with particular reference to the burden of proof. [120001]

Ministers are currently considering the recommendations arising from the reviews of armed forces pension and compensation arrangements. We are aware of the concerns of ex-Service groups with regard to the standard of proof for determining compensation claims and will take these fully into account in reaching final decisions.