Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Public Accounts Committee

2018 Annual Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General and Appropriation Accounts
Vote 37 - Employment Affairs and Social Protection
Chapter 12 - Regularity of Social Welfare Payments
Chapter 13 - Timeliness of Income Support Claim Processing
Chapter 14 - Customer Service - Development of Income Support Application Forms

9:00 am

Mr. John McKeon:

We have said that, but to be fair to them, if I were a disabled person or carer and had to wait three weeks for my consultant to give me a report, I would be losing out on three weeks' payment, so I would prefer to submit an incomplete claim. From a policy perspective, we may need to establish the entitlement date in those situations. There are risks to being more generous and there would be significant IT consequences for the Department, given that we would have to redesign many of our IT systems if we allowed for some flexibility around the entitlement date, but that is something that we will examine over the next year.