Metropolitan Police had denied toddler access to deceased fatherâ€™s pension because her parents had not been married.
A legal loophole in the Police Pensions Regulations 1987 meant that Tabitha Oxer-Patey was not entitled to any financial support from the force, even though her father had died while still a serving officer.
As the now toddler was still in the womb when her father tragically died in June 2010, pension administrators on behalf of the Met felt they were unable to pay out under the wording of Regulation D1.
Tabitha would have been entitled to the money anyway if her mother, Theresa Patey, also a police officer, had been married to the late father, PC Richard Oxer, at the time of his death.
But as the couple were not married, and chose to live as partners, the toddler was deemed as â€œillegitimateâ€ under the regulations.
On December 18 judges ruled that the decision was unfair on the toddler, violated her human rights and discriminated against her as a child of unmarried parents.
Solicitor Simon Cuthbert, of Slater & Gordon Employment, said the original decision had been â€œgrossly unfairâ€ and the result would now have a â€œlarge impact on the future financial security of our clientâ€.
He said: â€œThis case raised important questions about the rights of unborn children and unmarried couples.
â€œWe have represented Theresa and her daughter Tabitha and are pleased to have helped them to resolve this case.
â€œItâ€™s a very small point of law that meant that because Tabitha was still in her motherâ€™s womb and hadnâ€™t actually been born when her father tragically died she wasnâ€™t entitled to anything. If her mother and father had been married things would have been different.
â€œThis seems grossly unfair and although a small point of law which will probably effect very few people it could have had a large impact on the future financial security of our client.â€
Tabitha, whose claim was pursued by Ms Patey herself, can now access PC Oxerâ€™s pension. According to the most recent guidance, she should be entitled to at least 18.75 per cent of the late 31-year-oldâ€™s accumulated fund.
PC Oxer had served for around six years before his death, when he fell down the stairs of a central London pub while off-duty, sustaining a serious head injury. Tabitha was then born around five months later.
Any â€œnatural childâ€ of an officer is usually automatically entitled to support from their pension fund if any officer dies, as long as they are still serving at the time of death.
From Police Oracle