See relevant information here:
Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP)
The new weekly payment structure is as below:
- for individuals who earn €400 and over- the rate of payment is €350
- for individuals who earn between €300 and €399.99 per week – the rate of payment is €300
- for individuals who earn between €200 and €299.99 per week – the rate of payment is €250
- for individuals who earn less than €200 per week – the rate of payment is €203
More information on the PUP can be found here.
A Christmas Bonus of 100% will be paid in early December 2020 to people getting a long-term social welfare payment (minimum payment €20).
The bonus will also be paid to people getting PUP and jobseeker’s payments for at least 4 months.
Update to Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS)
Changes to the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme were announced last night. The new weekly payment structure is below.
- for individuals earning between 0 and €151- no subsidy €0
- for individuals earning >€151 < €203 – the rate of payment is €203
- for individuals earning >€203 < €300 – the rate of payment is €250
- for individuals earning >€300 < €400 – the rate of payment €300
- for individuals earning >€400< €1,462- the rate of payment is €350
We are awaiting Revenue’s update publication on the scheme, pending that more detail can be found here.
Debt warehousing for self-assessed taxpayers
The tax debt warehousing scheme will be extended to taxpayers who self-assess for income tax that are adversely impacted by Covid-19. Impacted taxpayers who cannot pay their 2019 balance and preliminary tax for 2020 can defer payment for 12 months. If income for 2021 is also at least 25% lower than income for 2019, the balance of 2020 balance and 2021 Preliminary Tax can also be warehoused. Debts that are warehoused are subject to 0% interest for 12 months. After this 12-month period, a reduced interest rate of 3% per annum will apply and no surcharge will apply. More information can be found here https://www.revenue.ie/en/tax-professionals/ebrief/2020/no-1902020.aspx
There are no changes to the standard or higher rate income tax bands.
The Earned Income Tax Credit for the self-employed will increase from €1,500 to €1,650. This increase will also be applied for the 2020 tax year.
The Dependent Relative Tax Credit will increase from €70 to €245.
Universal Social Charge (USC)
The ceiling of the 2% band will increase from €20,484 to €20,687, so that the salary of a full-time worker on the minimum wage will remain outside the higher rates of USC.
The weekly income threshold for the higher rate of employer’s PRSI will increase from €394 to €398 to ensure that there is no incentive to reduce the working hours for a full-time employee on the increased minimum wage.
Medical card holders will continue to pay a reduced rate of USC until the end of December 2021.
Payments to families
The weekly rate for a qualified child will increase by €2 from €36 to €38 for children under 12 years of age. It will increase by €5 from €40 to €45 for children aged 12 years and over (from January 2021).
- The One-Parent Family Payment earnings threshold of €425 will be removed (from April 2021).
- Working Family Payment income thresholds will increase by €10 per week for families with up to 3 children (from January 2021).
- Parent’s Benefit will be extended by 3 weeks from 2 weeks to 5 weeks for parents of children born or adopted from November 2019. The period it can be taken will be extended up to your child’s second birthday or within 2 years following adoption (from April 2021).
- The Widowed or Surviving Civil Partner Grant will increase by €2,000 from €6,000 to €8,000 (from January 2021).
- Disability and illness payments
The number of waiting days for Illness Benefit will be reduced from 6 days to 3 days on new claims (from the end of February 2021).
The earnings disregard for Disability Allowance will increase by €20 per week from €120 to €140 per week (from June 2021).
A grant of up to €500 to buy hearing aids and up to €100 towards repairs will be provided under the Treatment Benefit Scheme without requiring a matching payment by the claimant (from April 2021).
State pension age
The qualifying age for a State pension will continue to be 66. Legislation will be introduced later in 2020 to reverse the increase in pension age to 67 currently included in social welfare legislation.
The Fuel Allowance will increase by €3.50 per week from €24.50 to €28 (from January 2021).
Living Alone Increase
The Living Alone Increase will increase by €5 per week from €14 to €19 (from January 2021).
Increase for living on a specified island
The Increase for living on a specified island will increase by €7.30 from €12.70 to €20 per week (from January 2021).
The Carer’s Support Grant will increase by €150 from €1,700 to €1,850 per year (from June 2021)
COVID-19 Business supports
The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme will continue until 31 March 2021. Supports under a similar scheme are likely to continue from 1 April 2021. The Government has applied to the EU SURE fund (the European Instrument for Temporary Support to Mitigate Unemployment Risks) for additional funding. This fund is part of the European response to help protect jobs and workers affected by COVID-19.
Any employer who received excess amounts of the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme must refund the overpayment to Revenue. An employer may be unable to repay the overpayment immediately, due to the impact of Covid-19 on their business, and the existing tax debt warehousing scheme will be expanded to include these repayments.
The Covid Enterprise Support Grant payments have been extended until 31 March 2021. The grant is worth up to €1,000 and is aimed at sole traders who got the Government’s Restart Grant Plus.
The waiving of commercial rates due to local authorities has been extended until the end of 2020 to support businesses impacted by COVID-19.
Other COVID-19 supports include:
- €39 million in continued access to low cost loans for business
- €30 million for applied research in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industry
- €10 million to help businesses move online with the Online Retail Scheme
COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS)
A new COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) has been set up, aimed at businesses impacted by Covid-19 restrictions.
Qualifying businesses can apply to Revenue for a cash payment. The maximum weekly payment will be €5,000. The scheme is aimed at those in the accommodation, food and arts, recreation and entertainment sectors. If the Government decides to move to a higher level of restrictions then other sectors may qualify.
The scheme will run from 13 October 2020 until 31 March 2021.
The following measures will apply:
- Payments will be made when Level 3 restrictions or higher are in place in line with the Plan for Living with COVID-19
- Businesses will qualify where government restrictions directly prohibit or restrict customer access to their premises
- Payments will be calculated on the basis of 10% of the first €1 million in turnover and 5% thereafter, based on average VAT exclusive turnover for 2019
- A self- assessment of 80% disruption in turnover will be required