The main social welfare schemes for people who are unemployed are the jobseeker’s allowance and benefit schemes which provide income support for people who have lost work andare unable to find alternative full-time employment.
On 1 November I introduced a new scheme of job-seekers benefit for self-employed people which is based on a person's social insurance record.
Jobseekers allowance is a means tested scheme and is available for jobseekers who do not qualify for social insurance-based benefits. In assessing means from self-employment, income from the previous twelve months is used as an indicator of likely future earnings. As there is a wide range of self-employment situations, means are assessed to take an individual's circumstances into account. This allows for situations where a person's income can increase or decrease significantly from one year to the next.
Application forms are available on my Department's website www.welfare.ie or from the local Intreo Centre or Social Welfare Branch Office.
I would advise the Deputy that the person concerned should contact their local Intreo Centre which will be able to advise on their specific circumstances including the relevant documents required to support their application.
I trust this clarifies the matter.