War pensions and compensation for injury

If you're injured, become ill or die, and the main cause is service related, you or your dependants may be entitled to compensation. The same applies if a condition, which may not be service related, is made significantly worse by service.

What you or your dependants may be entitled to depends on one of two schemes.

Before 6 April 2005

If your injury, illness or death was caused or worsened by service before 6 April 2005, benefits are paid under the War Pension Scheme and, if applicable, under the Armed Forces Attributable Benefits Scheme - see Injury pre April 6 2005.

After 6 April 2005

For injury, illness or death caused or worsened by service on or after 6 April 2005, benefits are payable under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. Normally, you must make an application within seven years of sustaining the injury or illness and within seven years of leaving service. However, special rules apply for late onset illness - see Injury post 6 April 2005.

Negligence claims

If you think that your illness or injury has been caused by negligence on the part of the MOD, you can make a civil claim for negligence

Compensation Trust

If you receive a large award as compensation for your injury you should seriously consider putting this money into a compensation trust. This will protect the money so that it is available to pay for your care in the future and will also ensure that it is not treated as capital if you need to claim benefits.

Information for dependants

If your partner has died as a result of injury or illness caused or worsened by service, you may be entitled to compensation too. Your award will again depend on whether your partner died as a result of an injury or illness caused by service before or after 6 April 2005. See Widow/widowers and dependants – injury pre 6 April 2005 or Widow/widowers and dependants – injury post 6 April 2005. There is also provision to pay compensation to children who have lost both parents.

Other benefits

If you are entitled to a war pension, compensation under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme or dependant’s benefits, you may be entitled to further benefits and concessions – see Concessions for war pensioners.

If you have any questions, The Royal British Legion, the Forces Pension Society or one of the many Service charities may be able to help - see Other Service Organisations on the Legion's Knowledgebase.

Last reviewed: 14/03/2017