Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Questions (118)

Pádraig MacLochlainn


118. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn asked the Minister for Social Protection the position regarding the one-parent family payment scheme; and the number that will be affected when this change comes into effect in July 2013. [11381/13]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Social Welfare and Pensions Act, 2012, introduced changes to the structure of the one-parent family payment (OFP) scheme and reduced the maximum age limit of the youngest child at which the payment ceases. From 3 May 2012, the age of the youngest child is being reduced on a phased basis and will be 7 from 2014 for individuals who first claimed OFP since May of last year and from 2015 for all other OFP recipients. Originally, this year’s reduction in the maximum age limit of the youngest child for receipt of the OFP was set to occur from January. However, Budget 2013 contains a measure to provide 6,000 additional after-school child care places to low-income families who avail of employment opportunities. It is intended to launch an initial pilot of this scheme in April with the remainder of the places coming on stream later in the year. The commencement date of the age changes to the OFP scheme has, therefore, been deferred from January 2013, to July 2013. As such, recipients from the three OFP claim date cohorts will now lose their entitlement to their payment as follows:

Age Threshold reduces to:

From 3 May, 2012

From 4 July, 2013

From 3 July, 2014

From 2 July, 2015

If OFP payment commenced before

27 April, 2011





If OFP payment commenced between

27 April, 2011, and 2 May, 2012






If OFP payment commenced on or

after 3 May, 2012




The age changes will affect approximately 8,000 recipients in July 2013.