Written answers

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Department of Social Protection

Social Welfare Rates

Photo of Colm KeaveneyColm Keaveney (Galway East, Fianna Fail)
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238. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the estimated full-year cost in 2016 of increasing the disability allowance; the blind pension; the invalidity pension; and the carer's allowance, by €5, €10 and €15 per week. [38061/15]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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The estimated full year cost of increasing Disability Allowance, Blind Pension, Invalidity Pension and Carer's Allowance by €5.00, €10.00 and €15.00 per week is detailed in the table below:

Weekly IncreaseDisability Allowance

Blind Pension

Invalidity Pension

Carer's Allowance



These costs include proportionate increases for qualified adults, where applicable.

On Budget Day, I announced a social welfare Budget package for 2016 with four key aims:

- To increase supports for pensioners aged 66 and over;

- To strengthen supports for families with children;

- To increase the momentum to date in helping jobseekers back to work; and

- To provide targeted assistance for vulnerable groups.

In this regard, I am pleased to be in the position to provide a 75% Christmas Bonus payment this year. A single person in receipt of Disability Allowance will receive a bonus payment of €141. A couple in receipt of the Blind Pension, with a qualified adult and no children will receive a bonus of €234.60. A couple in receipt of Invalidity Pension with a qualified adult and two qualified children will receive a bonus payment of €293.40.

It should be noted that carers aged 66 and over will also benefit from the €3 weekly rate increase. This rate increase will also benefit carers in receipt of the half-rate Carer’s Allowance aged 66 and over, who will gain by €1.50 per week.

The Respite Care Grant, to be renamed the Carer’s Support Grant to better reflect the usage of the grant, will also be increased by €325, from €1,375 to €1,700 per annum. Furthermore, payment of Carer’s Allowance will be extended by 6 weeks, from 6 weeks to 12 weeks, after the death of the care recipient.

In addition, those eligible for the Fuel Allowance will gain from the increase in January of €2.50 per week, from €20 to €22.50 per week over the fuel season.


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