asked the Minister of Pensions whether, in view of the fact that certain classes of pension or allowance are required by the terms of the Royal Warrants to cease 12 months after the termination of the War, he will say what action is being taken by his Department in the matter?
There are two main classes of case in which, under the Royal Pensions Warrants, a temporary pension or allowance, available only for the period of the War and 12 months afterwards, has been given, as a special concession, in cases where the death or disablement of the man concerned has not been in any degree due to his War service. By the terms of the Warrants, these concessions expire on the 30th September next. The first of the two classes referred to is that of the widows of men whose death, though it took place during the War, was not found to be in any way attributable to war service, nor, in the case of disease, certified as having been contracted, or commenced on, or aggravated by service. In these cases a small temporary pension has been granted to the widow.
The second class of case is that of disabled men who were discharged from the Forces on account of some incapacity which was neither due to nor aggravated by their war service. In these cases a gratuity was provided by the Warrants on the man's discharge, and I was empowered by an amendment of the Warrant in 1918 to provide in-patient treatment during the period following their discharge for any of these cases that needed it, and to give allowances to the families of the patients during their treatment. In both classes of case, the men or widows concerned have, for the last four years, had the right of appeal to the independent Pensions Appeal Tribunals against the decision of the Ministry, and probably, in a majority of the cases concerned, have exercised it. I propose, however, to issue notices forthwith individually to the men and widows concerned as to the effect of the provisions of the Warrants, and to draw attention to the right of appeal they possess in good time to enable them to appeal, if they have not already done so, before the 30th September next.