Kevin O’Keeffe TD has welcomed the passing of the legislation for Jobseekers Benefit for the Self Employed which was secured by Fianna Fail under the confidence and supply agreement. The Bill passed all stages of the Oireachtas following Fianna Fail support and once signed by the President the new Act will commence in November 2019.
Deputy O’Keeffe commented “This will be welcomed by the self-employed giving them the comfort that if they have the required PRSI contributions they will be eligible for job-seekers benefit should they lose their self-employment. For far too long these benefits have been unavailable to the self employed but thankfully we have now secured Jobseekers Benefit and we have succeeded in getting dental and optical benefits extended to the Self Employed, while PRSI contributors are now eligible to qualify for the invalidity pension scheme. It is important that the self-employed are protected and we must continue to work on representing them and ensuring that they have the necessary benefits available to them”.
Features of the existing Jobseeker’s Benefit available to employees will apply which will include;
- Rates of payment will also be the same as those paid to employees receiving Jobseeker’s Benefit – currently €203 max. personal rate per week. Payments, including increases for qualified adults and children will also be made in line with that in place for existing Jobseekers Benefit.
- Payments will be subject to tax, in line with the current Jobseeker’s Benefit scheme for employees.
A self-employed person who loses their self-employment will have to satisfy the qualifying conditions for the new scheme including satisfying a PRSI contribution requirement. They will have access to the full range of activation supports available to all jobseekers such as referral to group information sessions, one to one interviews with caseworkers and subsequent caseworker support.
For further information please visit www.welfare.ie