New Forest East

DEFENCE – WAR WIDOWS' PENSIONS [23648] - 29 February 2020

DEFENCE – WAR WIDOWS' PENSIONS [23648] - 29 February 2020

Dr Julian Lewis:  To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of introducing legislative proposals to compensate the estimated 265 war widows that lost their war widow's pension on remarriage; and if he will make a statement on the progress his Department is making on resolving this situation.  [23648]

[Due for Answer on 9 March.]


The Minister for Defence People and Veterans (Johnny Mercer): This Government is acutely aware of the unique sacrifice that Service Families make to our country, and appreciates the situation in which those War Widows whom remarried or cohabited prior to 1 April 2015 have been placed in. However, due to the complex legal and financial ramifications surrounding this issue, the Government currently has no plans to reinstate war widows' pensions for those who remarried or cohabited before the 2015 changes took effect. On 3 February 2020, the Defence Secretary made a statement informing this house that we are examining alternative methods in order to mitigate the impact for the estimated 265 war widows whose pension ended as a result of this change – this work is enduring in order that we may explore all appropriate options to mitigate those affected.