Budgeting and Tax
Tax Relief for Parents
Single Person Child Carer Credit
If you are parenting alone and paying tax you may be eligible for an additional tax credit. The credit is called the Single Person Child Carer Credit (SPCCC). The amount of the credit is currently €1,650 per year (2023). This will reduce the tax you pay.
If you are eligible for the SPCCC, you are automatically entitled to an expansion of the lower tax band by €4000. This means you can earn an additional €4,000 at the 20% tax rate. In 2023 you can earn €44,000 on the standard rate of tax: €40,000 plus €4,000. In 2024 this will rise to €46,000 on the standard tax rate, because the single person tax band for the standard rate will be €42,000 in 2024. There are conditions for eligibility for the SPCCC:
- Only one parent can claim the SPCCC, and that person must be caring for an eligible child or children alone and cannot be cohabiting.
- You cannot claim if you are being jointly assessed for tax, if you are married (unless separated), co-habiting or in a civil partnership
- The SPCCC cannot be claimed in the year of bereavement if your spouse or civil partner has died but you may claim the SPCCC for the following tax years if you meet the qualifying criteria. It can, however, be claimed in the year of separation if you are not assessed for tax yourself because your tax was jointly assessed. There is more information about that on Revenue’s website here.
Can you give up your SPCCC claim to a secondary claimant?
You can give up your right to the SPCCC if you are the primary claimant. This is known as surrendering your claim. You may choose to do this because you do not have sufficient taxable income to use the credit fully.
Another person, the second parent or guardian (the secondary claimant), will then be entitled to claim the SPCCC instead, provided they meet the qualifying criteria for secondary claimants.
You may claim SPCCC again later if you are still a qualifying primary claimant and the tax credit will be restored to you at the beginning of the tax year following the withdrawal.
Further information on the difference between a primary and secondary claimant is available here.
There is more information on this tax credit and how to apply on the Revenue website.
It was announced in Budget 2024 that the SPCCC will increase by €100 to €1,750 for 2024.
The standard rate tax band for 2024 will be increased by €2,000 to €42,000 for a single person, with proportionate increases for married couples and civil partners. This means that in 2024 if you qualify for the SPCCC, you will be able to earn €46,000 on the standard rate of tax (currently 20%) before moving to the higher tax band.
The ceiling of the 2% Universal Social Charge (USC) band will increase by €2,840 to €25,760 from 1 January 2024. The 4.5% USC rate will be reduced to 4% from 1 January 2024. The 4% rate will apply to income between €25,760 and €70,044.
The reduced rate of USC for medical card holders is being extended until 31 December 2025. Reduced rates of USC apply to people who have a full medical card whose income is €60,000 or less a year.
Last modified: 26 October 2023