New clause 8 - Transition arrangements

Part of Armed Forces (Pensions and Compensation) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 24th February 2004.

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Photo of Mr Win Griffiths Mr Win Griffiths Labour, Bridgend 4:00 pm, 24th February 2004

With this it will be convenient to discuss the following: New clause 12—Assumptions—

'Before introducing any new scheme the Secretary of State shall set out the mortality and longevity assumptions upon which such scheme is based.'.

New clause 13—Comparative benefit statements—

'The Secretary of State shall provide individual comparative benefit statements for each serviceman and woman eligible to elect whether to remain within the scheme in force on the proposed transfer date or transfer to a new scheme promulgated by the Secretary of State.'.

New clause 22—Information to beneficiaries—

'(1) The Secretary of State shall ensure that information about changes to existing schemes and information about new schemes reaches all levels of all units. All relevant information shall be made available to all serving personnel.

(2) The rules relating to compensation for injuries and illnesses shall be made readily available to all serving personnel.

(3) The Secretary of State shall make provision for service personnel to receive access to independent financial advice when making decisions relating to proposed changes to the scheme.

(4) The Secretary of State shall set out at the beginning of future consultation processes a timetable for the completion of that process.

(5) Future changes to the schemes will be possibly by secondary legislation, but the basic principles of the scheme shall be set out in primary legislation and the introduction of a new scheme shall only be possible through primary legislation. Any major changes to the schemes in the future should be by statutory instrument subject to super-affirmative procedure, allowing for consultation both with interested groups and with Parliament, before final secondary legislation is presented to Parliament for approval.'.