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Widow loses pension after 17-day marriage

The Local · 28 Dec 2011, 14:38

Published: 28 Dec 2011 14:38 GMT+01:00

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The 56-year-old woman married her husband in November 2007, when he had terminal throat cancer. He died three weeks later.

The insurance company denied the woman the pension because she could not disprove that the marriage had been made for the sake of maintenance.

The woman, who lives on state benefits, argued to the court in the western town of Darmstadt, that she did not know how long her 58-year-old husband had to live at the time of their marriage.

Under German law, widows or widowers from marriages that last less than a year are not entitled to a widow's pension, though exceptions are made for accidental deaths or deaths by an unforeseen illness.

In this case, the judge decided that the man's illness was terminal at the time of the marriage and that the couple knew this.

Story continues below…

DPA/The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

14:57 December 28, 2011 by derExDeutsche
Had they been cohabiting, were they a couple for years? Or did they just get together before the Wedding?
16:55 December 28, 2011 by DoubleDTown
interesting outcome. One can see the public policy reasons behind the law, and while its enforcement may seem irksome on an individual level, it makes sense. As to when the couple got together, it doesn't matter. Despite Germans' habit of having children before they get married, Germany is still a country that has mostly organized itself around public policy goals of supporting legal marriage. Those citizens that want to benefit from the laws need to actually get married, not just cohabit.
17:44 December 28, 2011 by mos101392
Regarding the laws of how some countries distribute wealth after death, it may be understandable that they got a quicky marriage. If they had been partners living together for "years" it would be understandable to get married considering how many countries view a piece of paper, (marriage contract). However, if she was a Anna Nicole Smith double, I would be concerned if I was his biological offspring and some tussie came along in his last few hours and expected to gain from the established laws on inheritance. It would be sad if his last will and testament and wealth went to the person that happened to give him his last BJ before he met his maker.
18:31 December 28, 2011 by ovalle3.14
After such a short marriage at such an old age, one can barely argue that this woman left her career to take care of the home. Let's have some common sense.
13:26 December 29, 2011 by bearded1
Come on Old age she is still a young woman today,But it doesnt change the law.

If the law says NO Pension then it is NO Pension.

Insurance companies are quick to take your money but try every trick in the book to avoid paying out, they should have put the money somewhere safe instead, Definitly not the EURO maybe the whats the chinese currency?
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