The Short-Term Enterprise Allowance (STEA) gives support to people who have
lost their job and want to start their own business.
To qualify you must be getting Jobseeker’s Benefit. There is no qualifying
period, which means you do not need to have been getting Jobseeker’s Benefit
for a certain period of time. However, you will not qualify if you are getting
Jobseeker’s Benefit and working part-time.
From 4 April 2013 the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance is paid instead of
your Jobseeker’s Benefit for a maximum of 9 months. It ends when your
entitlement to Jobseeker's Benefit ends (that is at either 9 or 6 months).
To qualify for Short-Term Enterprise Allowance you must be getting or have
an entitlement to Jobseeker’s
Your business plan must be approved in advance in writing by a Jobs
Facilitator based in a social welfare local office or an Enterprise Officer in
your local development company (also known as partnership company) (see 'How to
Seasonal, temporary or part time self-employment will not qualify for the
Short-Term Enterprise Allowance.
You must contact the Department of Social Protection immediately if your
self-employment ends or you take up employment.
If you are unemployed when your entitlement to STEA ends you will not
immediately re-qualify for Jobseeker’s Benefit. However, you can apply for Jobseeker’s
Allowance, which is a means-tested payment.
Employment grants from a County Enterprise Board (CEB) or a local
development company do not affect your entitlement to the Short-Term Enterprise
Help with starting a business
The Technical Assistance and Training (TAT) fund helps people getting the
Short-Term Enterprise Allowance with certain costs
involved in starting a business. You do not have an automatic entitlement
to TAT. Assistance from this fund must be approved by the Jobs Facilitator in
your social welfare local office. Payments from the fund are not paid to you;
they are paid directly to the provider of the service you are using.
You can get more information about becoming
self-employed and setting
up a business.
How to apply
To apply for the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance, complete application form STEA 1
If you live in an area covered by a local development company (LDC) you
should return form STEA 1 to the Enterprise Officer. If you do not live in a
LDC area, you should return form STEA 1 to the Jobs Facilitator in your social
welfare local office.
The Enterprise Officer or Jobs Facilitator will look at your business
proposal and may discuss certain aspects of it with you. You must not take up
self-employment until you get written approval from the LDC or Department of
If you are accepted on to the Short-Term Enterprise Allowance, you must register
as self-employed with the Revenue Commissioners. You can find more
information on self-employment from your local tax office.