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War Widow(er)s Recognition Payment tax treatment

Statement made on 19 September 2023

Statement UIN HCWS1050


The Government announced in May that payments of £87,500 will be made to those who forfeited their entitlement to a pension for a service attributable death prior to 2015 and have not had this pension restored through divorce or subsequent bereavement. This payment is not intended to put a value on the widow(er)’s loss, but instead be an amount that clearly recognises that remarriage or cohabiting with a new partner does not erase the bereavement, as the Government is deeply conscious of the sacrifice these bereaved people have made.

The Government is today announcing that these payments will be exempt from income tax and National Insurance contributions. This will ease the administrative burden on recipients who are a specially designated group who benefit from a key principle of the Armed Forces Covenant, which recognises that special consideration should be made by the nation to those, such as the bereaved, who have given most in the service of our country.

We reiterate our sincere condolences and gratitude to the widows and widowers who lost beloved partners in service.

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This statement has also been made in the House of Lords

War Widow(er)s Recognition Payment tax treatment
Baroness Penn
The Treasury Lords Minister
Conservative, Life peer
Statement made 19 September 2023