Thursday, 29 April 2021

Questions (76)

Cathal Crowe

Question:

76. Deputy Cathal Crowe asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will address the apparent imbalance whereby self-employed persons who are on the pandemic unemployment payment can engage in a limited level of self-employment (details supplied); and if this will be extended to allow them to take up employment which comes under the remit of the PAYE system with the same financial limits as set out to supplement their income. [22362/21]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) is a statutory support provided for employees and the self- employed who have lost employment due to Covid-19.

The PUP is a statutory scheme which provides that a person cannot be engaged in insurable employment and continue to avail of the support.  A special arrangement was introduced to allow the self-employed to engage in limited levels of self-employment.  It is acknowledged that it may be necessary to undertake some limited levels of self-employment in order to continue to maintain a business.  The rationale for this arrangement is not to provide a supplement over and above the rate of PUP.

Self- employed persons may retain PUP and engage in limited self-employment where their trading income does not exceed €960 gross over an 8 week period. For persons who engage in self -employment for a maximum of 24 hours per week and whose income exceeds this threshold they may receive a partial payment under the COVID-19 Part-Time Job Incentive Scheme for the Self-Employed. 

A self- employed person who closes their PUP to take up some limited PAYE employment also has the option of applying for the means tested Jobseekers Allowance scheme where their days of insurable employment do not exceed 3 days in 7 consecutive days.

I trust that this clarifies the position for the Deputy.