Minister reveals 50,000 claims for Covid-19 Unemployment Payments so far

Minister reveals 50,000 claims for Covid-19 Unemployment Payments so far

The Minister for Social Protection, Regina Doherty, has announced that Revenue will implement the system to refund employers who continue to pay their laid-off staff €203 per week during the Covid-19 outbreak.

It comes as the Department reveals it has got more than 50,000 claims for Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payments since they were announced at the start of the week.

Minister Doherty said: “The measures taken already are extraordinary but this is an extraordinary time. There is great uncertainty and much anxiety about what lies ahead.

"The loss of a job and an income increases this anxiety and stress. We are doing all we can to help people through this anxiety.

"The new payment we introduced is just one measure and it means that we can get people into payment as quickly as possible. Hopefully this will provide some measure of reassurance to people unfortunate to be laid-off.

We are also calling on banks, landlords, utility providers and others to exercise forbearance with regard to payments of mortgages, rent and utility bills.

The Minister said Revenue administering the payments will help speed up the refund process and reduce the need for employers to rely on short-term finance.

Under the arrangement, employers who have to temporarily lay-off staff and who are not in a position to pay them their full wages, are asked to keep their employees on the payroll and pay them an amount of €203 - the equivalent of the Covid-19 Support Payment.

When employers then submit payroll returns to Revenue, Revenue will refund the employer the €203.

The Minister said: “This is a significant departure from our normal approach but meets a critical and immediate demand to address instant income needs of workers who have been temporarily laid off while also allowing them to stay on the employer payroll – a reassurance that they will, in all likelihood, have a job to return to.

"We are very appreciative of the work not just of Revenue but of the cooperation of employers and their payroll providers.”

Any workers with children and adult dependents are asked to apply for Jobseeker’s Benefit online at www.mywelfare.ie in order to get their full entitlements.

    Useful information
  • The HSE have developed an information pack on how to protect yourself and others from coronavirus. Read it here
  • Anyone with symptoms of coronavirus who has been in close contact with a confirmed case in the last 14 days should isolate themselves from other people - this means going into a different, well-ventilated room alone, with a phone; phone their GP, or emergency department;
  • GPs Out of Hours services are not in a position to order testing for patients with normal cold and flu-like symptoms. HSELive is an information line and similarly not in a position to order testing for members of the public. The public is asked to reserve 112/999 for medical emergencies at all times.
  • ALONE has launched a national support line and additional supports for older people who have concerns or are facing difficulties relating to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Ireland. The support line will be open seven days a week, 8am-8pm, by calling 0818 222 024

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