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Income Support: Ex-servicemen

Volume 485: debated on Tuesday 16 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether (a) income and (b) lump sums paid under (i) a war pension and (ii) the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme are disregarded for the purpose of calculating income support eligibility; and if he will make a statement. (240409)

[holding answer 11 December 2008]: Income-related benefits, such as income support or income-based jobseeker’s allowance, are intended to cover an individual’s day-to-day living expenses.

War widows pension, war disablement pension and their replacement, the armed forces compensation scheme, are paid to compensate for death or injury through service in the armed forces. A part of these weekly payments is disregarded when calculating entitlement to income-related benefits.

Certain elements intended to cover mobility or attendance needs, such as constant attendance allowance, are fully disregarded when paid as part of a war disablement pension.

Lump sum personal injury payments made under these schemes are disregarded in full for 52 weeks from the date they are received. Following this they continue to be fully disregarded if placed into a personal injury trust fund or used to purchase an annuity to help secure the injured person’s long-term future. Income generated from the trust fund/annuity is also fully disregarded.

Occupational pensions paid under the armed forces pension scheme, which are not paid to compensate for death or injury, are taken fully into account when calculating entitlement to income support and the other income-related benefits.