Entitlement to social welfare benefits is primarily a matter for the Minister for Social Protection, who has advised me that self-employed workers pay class S PRSI at the rate of 4% on all of their income, including unearned income such as rental income. PRSI class S contributors can establish entitlement to maternity benefit, adoptive benefit, guardian's payment and long-term benefits such as State pension (contributory) and widow's, widower's or surviving civil partner's pension (contributory). Similarly, individuals whose only source of income is rental income pay class S PRSI at the rate of 4% on all of their income.
An employee with earned self-employed income from a profession or trade is liable to pay class S PRSI at the rate of 4% on the aggregate of all of their self-employed income including any unearned income such as rental income, provided their total income exceeds €5,000.
Employees and occupational pensioners under pension age whose only additional source of income is unearned (including rental income) are liable to pay PRSI at the 4% Class K rate on this unearned income. While the PRSI Class K charge will not give rise to any additional social insurance benefits, most employees can establish entitlement to benefits based on PRSI paid on their employment income. Occupational pensioners, who have retired prior to pension age, will have established entitlement to social insurance benefits during their previous employment and can maintain their entitlements in retirement through credits (if unemployed) or through Voluntary Contributions.
Any changes to current social insurance entitlements arising from the payment of PRSI contributions would have cost implications and could only be considered in a budgetary context.