Social Insurance and EC Regulations


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Countries covered by EC Regulations

The EC Regulations apply to people who travel and work within the European Economic Area (EEA). The Regulations apply to the following countries:

Countries Covered by EU Regulations
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Norway
  • Portugal
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland ( See Note 1)
  • the Netherlands
  • the United Kingdom.

Note 1:
There are limitations for Unemployment Benefits regarding Switzerland.

The EC Regulations ensure that:

  • you receive the same treatment in social security matters as nationals of the above countries where you go to work and
  • periods of social insurance in any of these countries can be used to help you qualify for social security benefits here and
  • you and your family can receive the benefits to which you are entitled in whichever EEA country you may be.

The EC Regulations in general only cover:

  • workers and people getting social security benefits who are nationals ( See Note 2) of any of these countries and people with the status of stateless people or refugees living permanently in any of these countries and
  • the dependants and survivors of these people (irrespective of their nationality).

Note 2:
It has been agreed that cover will soon be extended to non-EU nationals who have worked in another EU Country.

Benefits Covered

The Regulations apply to:

  • Illness and Maternity Benefits (including health care)
  • Benefits for an accident at work or occupational disease
  • Invalidity Pension
  • State (Contributory) and State Pension (Transition)
  • Widow's or Widower's and Orphan's (Contributory) Pensions
  • Jobseeker's Benefit
  • Child Benefit
  • Bereavement Grant
  • Treatment Benefit.

The Regulations allow periods of social insurance in any of the EEA countries to be combined so that a worker may qualify for a benefit or pension.

In general, Child Benefit is paid in the EU country where the worker is employed regardless of where the family lives.

Note:
If you are going on holidays or going to look for work or to work temporarily as a Posted Worker in a country covered by EC Regulations, you should bring a European Health Insurance Card with you. This covers you for emergency health services. You can get this form and more information from your local Health Centre

Going to Work in another Country covered by EC Regulations

In general, if you take up work in another country covered by EC Regulations you will no longer be subject to the Irish PRSI system. The social security laws of that country will apply to you.

If you go to work in another country covered by EC Regulations, you should bring the following forms with you:

  • E104 Sickness Benefit purposes
  • U1 Unemployment Benefit purposes

These forms contain details of your Irish PRSI record and you will be asked to produce them if you claim benefit abroad.

Please provide the following information/documentation when applying for these forms:

  • Full name
  • PPS No.
  • Irish address
  • Forwarding address
  • P45 form(s) in respect of your employment(s) in current tax year
  • Your P60 in respect of your employment in the previous tax year.

You should apply for these forms, before you go, from:

International Records Section
Department of Social and Family Affairs
Inner Relief Road
Ardavan
Buncrana
Co. Donegal
Telephone: (01) 4175898

Coming back from another country covered by EC Regulations

When you are coming back from one of these countries, you should bring back a record of your contributions on Forms E301 and E104. These forms are available from the appropriate agency in that country. This will help speed up the payment of benefits under EC Regulations.

Transfer of Jobseeker's Benefit Abroad

If you have been getting Jobseeker's Benefit in Ireland for at least 4 weeks and wish to go to a country covered by EC Regulations to look for work, you can receive payment of this benefit abroad for up to 78 days. To obtain this you must inform the office where you 'sign-on' at least 4 weeks in advance so that the necessary arrangements may be made before you leave Ireland.

You are also required to register as unemployed, that is, 'sign-on' in the other country within 7 days of the date you were last registered as unemployed with your local Social Welfare Office, that is, within 7 days of the last day for which you receive payment. For more information on transferring your Jobseeker's Benefit contact International Records Section address above.

Posted Workers

You may be sent abroad by your employer to work temporarily. The following shows what happens when you are posted in another country for temporary periods of employment.

Posted in a Country COVERED by EC Regulations

If you are sent by your employer in Ireland to work temporarily (up to 24 months normally) in a country covered by EC Regulations you may continue to pay Irish PRSI provided certain conditions are met. You must apply for an A1 declaration to show that you are subject to Irish legislation while working in another country.  Further information may be obtained from:

Special Collections Section
Social Welfare Services Office
Government Offices
Cork Road
Waterford

Locall 1890 690 690 (from the Republic of Ireland only)

Telephone + 353 1 4715898 (from Northern Ireland or overseas)

Fax: + 353 51 877838

e-mail: Special Collections Enquiry Form

Posted to a Country NOT covered by EC Regulations (or a Bilateral Social Security Agreement)

If you are sent by your employer to work temporarily in a country not covered by EC Regulations or to a country with which Ireland does not have a Bilateral Social Security Agreement ( see below for details of these agreements), you remain liable for Irish PRSI contributions for the duration for your posting but no longer than 5 years.

You or your employer should contact Special Collection Section at the address above for a letter of retention to Irish Social Insurance while working abroad.

Workers from Abroad Posted Temporarily in Ireland

A worker who is ordinarily resident in a country not covered by EC Regulations, or with which Ireland does not have a Bilateral Social Security Agreement and who is sent to work temporarily in Ireland by an employer, who is not ordinarily registered in Ireland, may be exempt from paying Irish PRSI contributions for up to 12 months.

Further details can be obtained from:

Special Collections Section
Social Welfare Services Office
Government Offices
Cork Road
Waterford

Locall 1890 690 690 (from the Republic of Ireland only)

Telephone + 353 1 4715898 (from Northern Ireland or overseas)

Fax: + 353 51 877838

e-mail: Special Collections Enquiry Form

Last modified:27/11/2013
 

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