Minister Humphreys announces New Benefit for people aged between 65 and 66 years
Recipients of the payment are not required to be available for full-time work or genuinely seeking work and do not need to sign on
Quickest and easiest way to apply is through www.MyWelfare.ie
The Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys TD, has today announced the introduction of Benefit Payment for 65 Year Olds.
This is a payment for people aged between 65 and 66 years who are no longer engaged in employment or self-employment. Eligibility for the payment is determined by a person’s PRSI contributions.
The rate of payment is €203 per week (same rate as Jobseeker’s Benefit) with an increase for dependants, if eligible.
A person in receipt of this payment will not be required to be available for full-time work or genuinely seeking work and they will not be required to sign on the Live Register. Recipients are exempt from participating in Activation unless they choose to engage and can also participate in a course of education while retaining their full payment entitlement.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Minister Humphreys said:
“For many people, due to their contract of employment, retiring at the age of 65 is their only option.
“These are people who have been working all their lives and, for many, finding new employment can be difficult.
As Minister I want to be able to provide them with some certainty and peace of mind.
“That’s why I’m rolling out the ‘Benefit Payment for 65 Year Olds’ which reflects a key commitment in the Programme for Government.
“There is now no situation whereby somebody has to ‘sign on’ or go on the Live Register: This is a specific payment targeted at people in the year leading up to when they reach pension age.
“There are various other issues in relation to the State Pension that are being examined by the independent Commission on Pensions, which is due to make recommendations to me in the summer.
“In the meantime, I’m pleased to give clarity today to those aged 65 or approaching the age of 65 and I’m encouraging people to apply for this payment via www.MyWelfare.ie.”
Aside from the online application method via www.MyWelfare.ie, individuals can email email@example.com to request a paper application and it will be posted to them – however, this will take longer than applying online.
Applications can only be made when a person reaches 65 years of age. This payment will continue until the person reaches pension age provided they continue to meet the eligibility conditions.
To qualify for this payment a person must have fully ceased employment or self-employment. A person who takes up casual or part-time work while in receipt of the payment should notify the Department and discontinue their claim.
The Department has identified customers in receipt of Jobseeker’s Benefit who are eligible for the new payment and is in the process of advising them of the relaxation of conditions to their claim and of their automatic transfer to the scheme.
To qualify for Benefit Payment for 65 Year Olds a person must:
- be aged between 65 and 66 years
- have ceased employment or self-employment
- be resident in the Republic of Ireland
- satisfy the PRSI contribution conditions as set out in www.gov.ie/bp65. (PRSI Classes A, H, P and S are reckonable for this payment.)
Credits (Credited Contributions)
While in receipt of the Benefit Payment for 65 Year Olds, a person continues to get credited contributions on their social insurance record if they had an entitlement to them at the start of the claim. A self-employed person (or a person who was previously self-employed) may be entitled to unemployment credits also. This means that the person receiving this payment will not have a break in their social insurance record and the credits they receive are reckonable for other social welfare purposes e.g. State Pension (Contributory).