Written answers

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Department of Social Protection

Insolvency Payments Scheme Eligibility

Photo of Seán FlemingSeán Fleming (Laois-Offaly, Fianna Fail)
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129. To ask the Minister for Social Protection to set out her views on making arrangements to allow payments of wages due under the Payment of Wages Act 1991 to be paid from the Social Insurance Fund in a similar manner to the statutory redundancy payments in cases where an employer has a proven inability to pay and the amount is due; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46926/14]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Dublin West, Labour)
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The purpose of the insolvency payments scheme, which operates under the Protection of Employees (Employers’ Insolvency) Act, 1984, which, in turn, derives from EU Council Directive 987/80, is to protect certain outstanding pay-related entitlements due to employees in the event of the insolvency of their employer. These entitlements include wages, holiday pay, sick pay, payment in lieu of minimum notice due under the Minimum Notice & Terms of Employment Acts, 1973-2001, and certain pension contributions. Various other statutory awards made by the Employment Appeals Tribunal, Rights Commissioners, etc., are also covered by the scheme.

Where a person’s former employer was a limited company, the company must be in liquidation or receivership in order for the person to be eligible to claim under the insolvency payments scheme. In such circumstances, the liquidator or receiver becomes the relevant officer for submitting claims as he or she has access to the company records and can certify that the amounts claimed are in order.

As long as a business is still operating, the employer is responsible for all monies due under the Payment of Wages Act. As the Deputy is aware, my colleague, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D., has responsibility for the enforcement of the Payment of Wages Act.


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