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Content updated: 09-09-2021 14:42

The provisions of the Law on State Pensions of Officials and Servicemen relating to the calculation of the actual period of service required for granting the state pension were not in conflict with the Constitution

16-07-2021

By its ruling passed today, the Constitutional Court has recognised that Item 1 (wording of 25 June 2015) of Paragraph 3 of Article 16 of the Law on State Pensions of Officials and Servicemen, insofar as that item did not equate the actual period of service of officials and servicemen in military units of the USSR, those of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs, or in other units of the USSR after 11 March 1990 with the period of service required for granting the state pension of officials and servicemen, where such service was performed by persons possibly on an instruction given by officials of the Republic of Lithuania, was not in conflict with the Constitution.

The Constitutional Court noted that, according to Article 52 of the Constitution, the discretion of the legislature in establishing the granting of state pensions is wider than in regulating other pensions. The purpose of the state pension of officials and servicemen is, among other things, to compensate for difficult, responsible, and dangerous service performed by persons to the state. In view of the significant circumstances, the legislature may stipulate that the period of service to another state may be regarded as equivalent to a certain part of the necessary period of service by persons to the State of Lithuania in order to be granted this pension in cases where service to another state was performed when it was objectively impossible to perform service to the State of Lithuania. However, as stated by the Constitutional Court, it is not allowed to lay down such a legal regulation under which the period required for granting the state pension of officials and servicemen would be equated with the period of service to another state (including the USSR) when it was objectively possible to serve the State of Lithuania; such pension provision could not be defended under the Constitution.

The Constitutional Court has also stressed that the Republic of Lithuania did not assume an obligation to include in the period of service required for granting the state pension of officials and servicemen the period of service in the armed forces of the USSR, the border service of the USSR, and the internal affairs system of the USSR after 11 March 1990, when the Independence of Lithuania was restored. Service in the units of internal troops of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs may not be considered service to the State of Lithuania and the period of service in those units after 11 March 1990 should not be regarded as the period during which it was objectively impossible to perform service to the State of Lithuania. Therefore, persons who performed service in the armed forces of the USSR, the border service of the USSR, and the internal affairs system of the USSR after 11 March 1990 possibly on an instruction of officials of the Republic of Lithuania, when it was objectively possible to serve the State of Lithuania in the institutions under its control, could not have the legitimate expectation that the period in question would be included in the period of service required for granting the state pension of officials and servicemen.