Is an employer obliged to top up the COVID19 Wage Subsidy Scheme

Short answer no!

Revenue say ” The employer is expected to make best efforts to maintain the employee’s net income as close as possible to normal net income for the duration of the Subsidy period. There is no minimum amount that the employer must pay as an additional payment in order to be eligible for the scheme, but the employer will need to enter at least €0.01 in Gross Pay when running its payroll. “

So if you are not topping up the scheme you must add a payment amount of €0.01 on to have the PSR accepted

How long does the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy Scheme Last

The COVID-19 Wage subsidy scheme started on the 26th of March 2020 and is expected to last 12 weeks

COVID-19 information for Irish SME’s

COVID-19 / Coronavirus information for Irish SME’s

  1. Revenue will engage with any viable business that experiences temporary cashflow difficulties, including difficulties arising from exceptional circumstances such as the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak.  Details here 
  2. The government have made available an initial package for business of €200 million . (Haven’t given details on this yet) 
  3. Self-employed people will be entitled to receive either illness benefit (€305pw)  or non-means tested supplementary welfare allowance 
  4. The waiving the requirement for six waiting days for sick pay in respect of medically certified cases of self-isolation in accordance with public health guidelines
  5. The removal of the means test requirement for Supplementary Welfare Allowance in respect of medically certified cases of self-isolation
  6. To contain the transmission of Covid-19, the personal rate of Illness Benefit will be increased from €203 per week to €305 per week for a maximum period of two weeks of medically certified self-isolation, or for the duration of a person’s medically-certified absence from work due to Covid-19 diagnoses
  7. If you have to temporarily reduce an employees hours or temporary lay them off they may be entitled to social welfare payments. It’s critical proper procedures are applied at this stage. Details here

Work for dole- How it could work

I’ve been debating the work for dole idea with friends and on twitter over the last few days. Personally I think if set up correctly it ‘could’ work. Here’s how:

  • There has to be an increased welfare payment to cover the extra expenses involved in travelling and lunches
  • Anyone on social welfare should be able to approach the non profit organisation of their choice and work with them without waiting for random selection. Time sheets are sent in weekly from the organisation to the social welfare. This would ensure no one is stuck doing work they don’t like
  • Participants of the scheme should be paid their dole straight into their bank account so don’t have to join the ‘dole que’ to collect their payment.
  • Inspectors must police the system to ensure all workers are treated fairly
  • This programme could give people a reason to get out of bed and hopefully a sense of a achievement by being back at work again. It also alleviates the two things which I personally would hate about being on the dole. 1. Boredom. 2. The humiliation of the dole office.

    My own close family members have been touched by unemployment over the years and I have personally seen what it can do to an individual.


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