Written Answers. - Housing Grants.

Richard Bruton

Question:

415 Mr. R. Bruton asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if an application for a first-time buyer's grant by a person (details supplied) in County Dublin meets the criteria which his Department has set for eligibility for a grant by persons who are separated but have been previous owners of a house. [10971/03]

The conditions governing the new house grant scheme normally preclude payment of a grant where a person who is party to a joint application or the spouse of such person had previously purchased or built, individually or with each other, another house for his/her own occupation. However, a grant may be allowed where the marriage of the person has been dissolved or annulled by court order or the person is separated under a court order or a deed or separation, and the person and any dependants are in need of housing; and the Minister is satisfied that refusal to pay a grant would cause undue hardship. Each such application is considered on its merits. In this particular case, my Department is awaiting additional information requested from the applicant.