askonefamily | Budget 2016 Social Welfare Changes

askonefamily_200px Logo_Small_LRWe have summarised some of the main changes from Budget 2016 (presented on 13 October 2015) which may affect one-parent families. If you or anyone you know would like information regarding your individual circumstances, askonefamily is available on 1890 66 22 12 / 01 662 9212 or by email here.

Budget 2016 | Social Welfare Changes

  • No change to the main social welfare payment rates, which include One-Parent Family Payment, Jobseeker’s Allowance Transition and Jobseeker’s Allowance, so it remains at €188 a week for the adult and €29.80 per week, per child.
  • The earnings disregard of €90 a week, which applies to One-Parent Family Payment, will now also apply to Jobseeker’s Allowance Transition. Earnings over €90 will be assessed at 50% rather than the previous 60%. This will apply from January 2016.
  • Fuel Allowance will increase from 1st January 2016 to €22.50 a week, up from €20.
  • Family Income Supplement net income thresholds will increase between €5 and €10 a week, also from January 2016:
Family size 2015 rates 2016 rates
1 child €506 €511
2 children €602 €612
3 children €703 €713
4 children €824 €834
5 children €950 €960
  • Child Benefit will increase by €5 a month, from January 2016
  • The Christmas bonus will be paid in December 2015 to long-term social welfare recipients at a rate of 75% of their payment; this includes those on One-Parent Family Payment, Jobseeker’s Allowance transition, Carer’s Allowance, Disability Allowance, Widow/Widower’s/Surviving Civil Partner’s Pensions.
  • It will also be paid to those on Back to Work Allowance, Community Employment, Rural Social Scheme, Tús, Gateway and Jobs Initiative.
  • There will be 2 week Paternity Benefit, in respect of births from September 2016.
  • Those on Carer’s Allowance who have been in receipt of the Respite Care Grant will receive an increase in the payment, to €1,700 and it will be called the Carer’s Support Grant.

The information above can be downloaded here.

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askonefamily Budget 2015 Changes Summarised

There was little change in the Budget to address the needs of one-parent and shared parenting families in Ireland. However, the main rates of social welfare payments went unchanged and there was a small increase in Child Benefit rates for 2015. A small bonus for Christmas for recipients of many social welfare payments was also among the Budget 2015 announcements made today. askonefamily, our information service, summarises the key changes relevant to one-parent families below.

Summary of Relevant Budget 2015 Changes

Main social welfare payments rates (including One Parent Family Payment, Jobseeker’s Allowance Transition, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Carer’s Allowance and others)

  • The rates of weekly payment will remain the same in 2015

Child Benefit

  • Increase of €5 per month, per child, from January 2015 to €135 a month, per child.

Back to School Clothing and Footwear

  • This payment is maintained in 2015

NEW***Christmas Bonus

  • Recipients of long term social welfare payments will receive a bonus payment of 25% of weekly payment this December 2014. This includes recipients of One Parent Family Payment, Carer’s Allowance, Disability Allowance, long-term Jobseeker’s Allowance, Jobseeker’s Allowance – Transition, Community Employment, Back to Work Allowance, Widow/Widower’s pension, Job Initiative and some others

NEW***Back to Work Family Dividend

  • For one-parent families and long term jobseeker families with children who find or return to work, they will be able to retain the Qualified Child Increase of €29.80 per child, per week, for 12 months and then 50% of the rate for a second year. This applies to employment and self-employment.  This Back to Work Family Dividend (BTWFD) will be in addition to eligibility for Family Income Supplement (FIS) and will not affect the level of FIS payment.
  •  In order to be eligible for the BTWFD then a person must be coming off their main social welfare payment (One-Parent Family Payment, Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Allowance – Transition), in full and going into employment or self-employment.   A person who is already in employment and in receipt of One-Parent Family Payment (OFP) and who then increases their hours of employment to the point that they are no longer eligible for OFP because their earnings from work are in excess of €425 a week (gross) or who is no longer entitled to an OFP payment because of the age of their youngest child may then qualify for the BTWFD.  Applications will be open in January 2015.

NEW***Water Subsidy

  • For those in receipt of Fuel Allowance then an additional €100 a year will be paid as support towards water services. The Water Support payment will be paid at a rate of €25, four times a year for a total yearly payment of €100.  First payments will be issuing by the end of March 2015. If you have been awarded the Fuel Allowance then you will automatically receive the Water Support payment.


  • No increase in taxes on petrol or diesel or Motor tax

Income tax

  • Increase in the standard rate tax band for a single people from €32,800 to €33,800
  • Higher tax rate reduced from 41% to 40%

Universal Social Charge (USC)

  • The Universal Social Charge rates have been reduced; the 2% rate drops to 1.5% and the 4% rate drops to 3.5%
  • Entry point for paying USC going up from just over €10,000 to just over €12,000 in 2015


If you would like further clarification on any of Budget changes, contact askonefamily on 1890 66 22 12 or by email.