Working with your spouse or civil partner: how it affects your social welfare contributions and entitlements

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The Department of Social Protection and the Revenue Commissioners use the following factors to decide if a partnership normally exists:

  • there is a written partnership agreement (a written agreement is not required by law, however);
  • each partner writes cheques on the business accounts in their own right;
  • there is a joint business account;
  • it is apparent to those doing business with the partnership that a partnership exists;
  • business accounts and activities are in joint names of the partners;
  • each partner makes a significant contribution to the running of the business;
  • the business is owned jointly by the partnership;
  • the profits and losses of the partnership are shared by each partner;
  • the business stationery reflects the existence of a partnership.

You should meet some of these general criteria if you are claiming to be in a partnership with your spouse or civil partner. If you cannot do this, you will be deemed not to be in a business partnership.

Last modified:05/08/2014