All Veterans Advisory and Pensions Committees (VAPCs) are able to help veterans find the financial support available to them.
London VAPC member Gill Grigg said:
I was recently contacted by a former member of the Royal Air Force who has lived in Europe for a number of years. He was concerned about the pension situation of his wife should he die.
He could remember receiving letters from the administrators of the Armed Forces Pension Scheme informing him that he could make extra payments but did nothing about it. He was shocked to recently receive information which he understood to mean that upon his death his widow would not receive a pension.
He had served from January 1961 to October 1978. The rules are that prior to 6 April 1975, there was no provision for a preservation of pension benefits. However, from that date the rules changed and a defined pension scheme was introduced. I therefore suggested that he contact the UK Pensions Division and the Forces Pension Society. Having done so, I’m pleased to report that he has received confirmation that his widow would receive an Armed Forces Family Pension.
Her colleague, Penny Long, who is also a member of London VAPC, said:
By chance, at a Christmas Party, I sat next to the wife of a retired Naval Officer who was suffering from a terminal illness. Along with a number of navy personnel, her husband believed that an officer could not receive benefits from the War Pension Scheme.
Penny and Gill ensured that a Veterans UK Welfare Manager visited the couple. His medical condition was recognised as attributable to his service and resulted in the award of a War Disablement Pension. Following the death of the officer, a War Widow’s Pension was awarded to his widow.