Written Answers. - Social Welfare Benefit.

55.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare the reason unemployment assistance was disallowed to a person (details supplied) in County Kildare who was available and genuinely seeking work.

Entitlement to unemployment assistance is subject to the condition that a claimant is available for work and genuinely seeking work.

The person concerned claimed unemployment assistance on 6 February 1989. Her claim was disallowed by a deciding officer on the grounds that she was not available for employment.

She appealed against the disallowance and was afforded an oral hearing of her appeal on 12 April 1989. The appeals officer also decided that she was not available for or genuinely seeking employment from 6 February 1989. She was notified of this decision on 20 February 1989.

She continues to sign the unemployed register. Her entitlement to unemployment assistance after the date of the appeals officer's decision is at present being reviewed and a decision will be made shortly.

56.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare when a decision will be made regarding the unemployment benefit claim of a person (details supplied) in County Laois.

The person concerned, who returned from the United Kingdom in early April 1988, claimed unemployment benefit from 12 April 1988 but, on the basis of his Irish contribution record, he did not satisfy the contribution conditions. A claim he made for unemployment assistance was disallowed on the grounds that he failed to disclose particulars of his means.

He was employed in the UK during the contribution period 6 April 1986 to 5 April 1987 which governs claims to unemployment benefit during 1988.

Under European Community Regulations a person who has an insurance record in another member state is entitled to have that record taken into account for Irish unemployment benefit purposes provided he has been in employment for which the appropriate rate of contributions have been paid since his return to this country.

Inquiries are being finalised to establish if this employment was insurable at the appropriate rate to enable his UK record to be invoked. When these inquiries are completed, his entitlement to unemployment benefit will be determined.

He obtained occasional work during the period August 1988 to October 1988 and became entitled to unemployment assistance at the weekly rate of £61.40 in October 1988. In the meantime, he is in receipt of unemployment assistance at the weekly rate of £61.40 which is the maximum rate of £72.65 appropriate in his case less means of £11.25.

57.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare the reason unemployment assistance was terminated in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Offaly; and if he will make a statement on the matter in view of the fact that this person has no means.

Following investigation the unemployment assistance claim of the person concerned was disallowed from 3 May 1989 on the grounds that by failing to furnish details of her means, she failed to show that her means did not exceed the statutory limit. She appealed against the disallowance on 16 May 1989 and arising from contentions raised by her in support of her appeal, further inquiries by the social welfare officer are necessary.

When these inquiries are completed the appeal will be decided by an appeals officer at the earliest available opportunity. Her entitlement to unemployment assistance will be reviewed in the light of the decision of the appeals officer.

58.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare the present position regarding the disability benefit claim of a person (details supplied) in Limerick; and if a further investigation will take place.

The person concerned was paid disability benefit from 11 May 1983 to 15 September 1988 when payment was suspended following receipt of information that he was self-employed. One of the conditions for receiving disability benefit is that no work can be undertaken unless it is of a very minor nature and sanctioned as acceptable to the Department.

Investigations are continuing into the entitlement of the person concerned to disability benefit. When these investigations are completed a decision will be given in the case by a deciding officer.

59.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare if arrangements will be made for an oral hearing of the appeal of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 24 for disability benefit; when this will be arranged; and if he will expedite the matter having regard to the urgent financial needs of this person.

Payment of disability benefit to the person concerned was disallowed from 12 January 1989 following examination by a medical referee who expressed the opinion that she was capable of work. She expressed dissatisfaction with the decision to disallow payment and was examined by a different medical referee on 27 February 1989 who also considered her capable of work.

Her case has been referred to an appeals officer who has decided to hold an oral hearing of the appeal. This hearing is likely to take place in the next two or three weeks and the person concerned will be advised of the arrangements as soon as possible.

The person concerned has already been advised that she should claim unemployment benefit or unemployment assistance if her means are insufficient. Alternatively she could contact her local community welfare officer with a view to claiming supplementary welfare allowance.