Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Questions (771)

Peter Burke

Question:

771. Deputy Peter Burke asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of self-employed persons who have availed of invalidity pension since its extension to the self-employed by county in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [29346/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Employment)

The extension of Invalidity Pension (IP) to self-employed contributors from the 1st December 2017 has, for the first time, given the self-employed access to a social insurance based income support if they become permanently incapable of work as a result of an illness or disability, without having to go through a means test. This represented a real improvement in the level of social insurance cover available to the self-employed even though the level of contribution was not increased. When deciding to extend access to this benefit to the self-employed, the Government wanted to ensure that it was on a similar basis to that of those in employment.

A separate IP scheme for the self-employed was not set up; rather the qualifying conditions specified in legislation for the existing scheme, were amended to include self-employed PRSI contributions in the “reckonable” category for the purpose of IP.

To date, 867 customers whose social insurance record included self-employed ("Class S") PRSI contributions have been awarded IP.  Of this figure, 165 customers have either returned to employment or transferred to other schemes leaving 702 customers that are currently in payment and the following table gives a breakdown by county.

 

COUNTY

Total

CARLOW

14

CAVAN

12

CLARE

29

CORK

96

DONEGAL

28

DUBLIN

112

GALWAY

42

KERRY

28

KILDARE

32

KILKENNY

23

LAOIS

8

LEITRIM

8

LIMERICK

36

LONGFORD

12

LOUTH

17

MAYO

24

MEATH

24

MONAGHAN

7

OFFALY

14

ROSCOMMON

11

SLIGO

14

TIPPERARY

32

WATERFORD

19

WESTMEATH

19

WEXFORD

25

WICKLOW

16

Grand Total

702