Wednesday, 19 January 2022
Department of Housing, Planning, and Local Government
Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment
524. To ask the Minister for Housing, Planning, and Local Government if persons who received the pandemic unemployment payment pass the test of continuous employment that is required in order to apply for a loan under the local authority home loan scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1423/22]
In light of the ongoing COVID-19 situation, the requirement that a primary earner must have at least two years continuous employment and the second applicant must have at least one year of continuous employment is relaxed temporarily. Periods where an applicant was unemployed as a direct result of the COVID-19 situation will not be deemed as a break in the required continuous employment and will be disregarded if certain conditions are met, including:
- You became unemployed in or after March 2020 and you return to employment.
- You have resumed continuous employment for a period of at least three months post your COVID-19 unemployment.
On a case-by-case basis, applications where the period of continuous employment post-temporary COVID-19 related unemployment is less than three months can be eligible, if the local authority considers that the particulars of the case warrant this approach, for example if the business of the applicant's employer is considered stable and there is no reason to expect another period of unemployment, subject to there being at least two years of employment overall.
In the situation of joint applicants, where one applicant was employed as normal and one applicant was made unemployed due to the COVID-19 situation, it is possible for this joint application to be eligible. However, the assessment of borrowing and repayment capacity and final loan approval will be based only on the income of the employed applicant.
Further information including eligibility criteria on the Local Authority Home Loan scheme is available on the dedicated website localauthorityhomeloan.ie/