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Nuclear Veterans War Pensions Appeal: landmark ruling from the High Court

In a landmark ruling on the correct approach to war pension claims, Mr Justice Charles has allowed the appeals of nuclear test veterans who served on Christmas Island and Maralinga in the 1950s and early 1960s.

The Appellants, represented by Roger ter Haar QC and Richard Sage of Crown Office Chambers (and Anthony Metzer QC and Adam Gersch of Goldsmith Chambers), are all ex-servicemen or the widows of servicemen who were present on Christmas Island during a series of atomic bomb tests. The Appellants claimed that, as a result of the tests, they (or their husbands) had been exposed to ionising radiation, which resulted in subsequent disablement or injury. The Appellants’ claims for war pensions had been turned down, and their appeals to the First Tier Tribunal had failed. Mr Justice Charles has allowed each of the veterans’ appeals, concluding that the First Tier Tribunal had misapplied the law in reaching its decision. Many thousands of veterans served on Christmas Island during the atomic tests, and are potentially affected by the successful outcome of the appeal.

Roger ter Haar QC and Richard Sage were instructed by Hogan Lovells International LLP.

Click here for the report in the Times.



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