The government has announced a National Covid-19 Income Support Scheme that will provide financial support to Irish workers and companies affected by the crisis.
- a temporary wage subsidy of 70% of take home pay up to a maximum weekly tax free amount of €410 per week net to help affected companies keep paying their employees. This is the equivalent of €500 per week before tax and based on workers earning up to €38,000. Workers earning between €38,000 and €76,000 will be entitled to assistance capped at €350 and those earning in excess of €76,000 will be excluded from the scheme. The scheme is targeted at companies hit by the collapse of economic activity triggered by Covid-19 – and employers seeking to avail of it would have to demonstrate a reduction in income of at least 25%, along with cash flow difficulties. LINK to Revenue details – be sure to follow all links in revenue.ie section.
- workers who have lost their jobs due to the crisis will receive an enhanced emergency COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment of €350 per week (an increase from €203). Those with dependants may be entitled to more than this amount and Jobseekers remains available to those individuals.
- the COVID-19 illness payment will also be increased to €350 per week. It was stated that this ‘illness’ payment may be topped up by employers.
- the self-employed will be eligible for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment of €350 directly from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (rather than the Revenue scheme)
- enhanced protections for people facing difficulties with their mortgages, rent or utility bills
The government is taking these extraordinary measures to help ordinary Irish citizens and families during this period of great economic and social stress. These measures will have an initial estimated cost of €3.7 billion over a 12-week period.
The government believes these costs are necessary to ensure social solidarity with workers and their families affected by the crisis. In addition, the aim is to keep employees and employers connected, and make it easier to restart businesses when the crisis ends.