Unemployment Benefits in Ireland

Rates of Unemployment Benefits in Ireland. 2019
(Rates increased March 2019)

There are two types of welfare payments for unemployed people in Ireland.

1.Jobseekers Benefit  : JSB
Jobseeker’s Benefit is a weekly payment from the Department of Social Protection (DSP) to people who are out of work and covered by social insurance (PRSI). In other words – you must have been previously in a job and have paid a certain number of PSRI contributions. It is paid for a maximum of 9 months.  Full Rules Here

Maximum Weekly Rate :  €203  plus €134.70 for a dependent adult plus  €34 for each child under 12 and  €37 for each child aged 12 or over.
For example:  : A couple with 2 children (11 and 13) would get a maximum of  €408.70 a week ( €21,252 a year)


2. Jobseekers Allowance : JSA
Jobseekers Allowance is payable to claimants who have not paid enough PSRI contributions (or any). The top rates of payment are very similar to Jobseekers Benefit – but under 25’s get a lower rate.

You go on to Jobseekers Allowance after you have used up your entitlement to Jobseeker’s Benefit.

Maximum Weekly Rate Over 25  : €203   – Plus €134.70  for a dependent adult. Plus €34 for each child under 12 and  €37 for each child aged 12 or over.

Claimants aged 25  get €157.80 a week Jobseekers Allowance plus €124.70 for a dependent adult.

Claimants aged between 18 and 24 –  get   €112.70 a week with €112.70 for a dependent adult.

The main differences between Jobseekers Benefit and Jobseekers Allowance – are:

  • Jobseekers Benefit is not means tested
    The income  of your partner is not taken into account for Jobseekers  Benefit.
    Jobseekers Benefit is only paid for 12 months.
  • Jobseekers Allowance is subject to a means test – . A means test is when your income is calculated to find out if it falls below a certain level. If it falls below a certain level you can get Jobseeker’s Allowance. The income of your partner will be taken into consideration too.

See here about getting  your Jobseekers Allowance paid while you are abroad and looking for work.