Jobseeker's Allowance - Income from Insurable Employment


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Assessing Earnings from Insurable Employment

(A) Means assessment from 26th September 2007

  1. Example of new means assessment
  2. Means assessment prior to the 26th September 2007

(B) Seasonal Earnings


Assessing earnings from insurable employment

Jobseeker's Allowance is payable at the appropriate weekly rate less means. The person's average assessable weekly earnings are established by reference to the previous 13 weeks (or another period if this is more representative of the person's normal working pattern).

When assessing means from insurable earnings, firstly assess the weekly means. The weekly means must not exceed the scheduled rate of Jobseeker's Allowance payable.

If the weekly means are not in excess then the daily means must be assessed.

(A) Means assessment from 26th September 2007
From 26th September 2007 a new more beneficial assessment applies to income from insurable employment as follows:

Assessable income is gross earnings less deductions for PRSI, superannuation (icluding AVC's and PRSA's), the pension levy and union dues. Deductions in respect of income tax, VHI ( BUPA etc.) and travel expenses are not allowed. The person's net average assessable weekly earnings are assessed by reference to the previous 13 weeks (or another period if this is more representative of the person's normal working pattern). Earnings from insurable employment are assessed as means using the following method:

A disregard of 20.00 a day for each day worked by the customer up to a maximum of 3 days each week applies (max. 60.00 a week). Means of customer are calculated as follows: assessable income less the relevant disregards and the balance is assessed at 60%. In the case of a couple, each person is assessed in exactly the same manner, assessable income less the relevant disregards and 60% of the balance is assessed as means.

Exception- Earnings from employment as a retained firefighter are not subject to daily means assessment for jobseeker’s allowance, although a weekly means assessment applies.

(i) Example of new means assessment

Single person with no children works 2 days a week in insurable employment. In the last 13 weeks she has worked 26 days with net earnings of 1,500.

Step 1

Average Weekly Earnings:
1,500 / 13 = 115.38 − 40.00 (20.00 X 2) = 75.38 X 60% = 45.23
Rounded to 45.00
Weekly means in this case are not in excess, calculate daily earnings means.

Step 2

Daily earnings:
115.38 / 2 = 57.69 − 20.00 = 37.69 X 60% = 22.61
Rounded to 23.00

Daily earnings means = 23.00
Customer works 2 days a week 23 X 2 = 46.00

Weekly Jobseeker's Allowance payment = 197.80
Less means 46.00
Weekly payment = 151.80

(ii) Means assessment prior to the 26th September 2007

The person's net average assessable weekly earnings were assessed by reference to the previous 13 weeks (or another period if this was more representative of the person's normal working pattern). Net earnings were the gross earnings less tax, PRSI, Health Insurance e.g. VHI, Union Dues.

The weekly means were assessed and if the weekly means were not in excess of the scheduled rate of Jobseeker's Allowance payable then the daily means were assessed.

Where a person had no qualified children a disregard of 12.70 a day applied for each day worked and 60% of the new balance was assessed against the weekly rate of Jobseeker's Allowance.

Where a person had qualified children no disregard applied and 60% of the net earnings were assessed as means against the weekly rate of Jobseeker's Allowance.

(B) Seasonal Earnings

Seasonal employment is employment which is created annually as a result of a particular seasonal variation in the amount of work, and terminates at the end of that season. The start and end dates may vary from season to season and from worker to worker, but overall there should be a clearly discernible beginning and end to the season. The length of the season should not generally exceed six months.

In determining whether a person is involved in seasonal employment the nature of the business is investigated, as well as the nature of the person's employment.

Some of the typical areas where seasonal employments exist are listed below:

  • Turf harvesting with Bord na Mona
  • Fish processing
  • Ice cream manufacturing
  • Hotels, restaurants and shops in areas where there is a limited tourist season.

It should be noted, however, that some employees in each of these businesses may be employed on a permanent or casual basis rather than on a seasonal basis.

Earnings are assessed during the season while the person is actually engaged in seasonal employment, using the previous season's earnings as a guide. Once the season is over, the means from seasonal employment are excluded from the assessment until the commencement of the next season.


Last modified:29/08/2013
 

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