Written Answers. - Social Welfare Sick Benefits.

293.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare if he is aware that persons who are absent sick from work and claim social welfare are only receiving the flat rate of payment and not the pay-related part which they are due and of the delay of up to three months and in some cases as much as five months before they receive the pay-related part; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Pay-related benefit is not payable to persons claiming disability benefit from my Department in respect of the first two weeks of incapacity. After the expiration of that period payment is made promptly to any such persons who quote their correct Revenue and social insurance numbers and for whom details of reckonable earnings in the relevant income tax year are available.

Where, however, a person fails to quote his Revenue and social insurance Number, or quotes an incorrect number, some delay in payment may occur. Delay may also occur where information on reckonable earnings is not available under the number quoted by the claimant. In these circumstances it is necessary to ask him to supply a certificate of earnings from his employer in order to determine entitlement to pay-related benefit. The extent of any resultant delay in payment depends on the length of time taken to supply such certificate.