Big change in welfare payments THIS WEEK as thousands of Irish have warned of switching ahead of Christmas

THOUSANDS of Irish welfare recipients will see a major change in payment schedules over the Christmas and New Year period.

Payment date changes have been confirmed, meaning people receiving certain payments may receive them in their accounts a few days before Christmas Day.

Irish welfare recipients will be made aware of the change over Christmas


Irish welfare recipients will be made aware of the change over ChristmasPhoto credit: Getty Images – Getty

If you receive maternity allowance, you will receive this as usual in the week of December 19th. along with an advance for the following week.

That means thousands of people will get a double payment the week of December 19th – and then their next payment on December 30th.

This applies to payments made at post offices, by check or directly into your bank account.

However, if you receive a payment on December 22nd or 23rd, it will be made one day earlier, on December 21st or 22nd respectively.

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And if you’re expecting cash on January 2nd, the payment will be on December 30th instead.

Weekly payments will return to normal from January 3, 2023, the Department of Social Protection confirmed.

On 12/26, 12/27 and 01/02/2020 all department offices, including the Intreo Center and branch offices, will also remain closed.

And the government confirmed that the change in welfare payment dates will also affect part-time, casual or short-time workers over the Christmas and New Year period.

All concerned must follow the guidelines on to ensure they receive their payments on time.

Over 1.3 million welfare recipients alone have received a double Christmas bonus – but not all receive the one-off grant.

People who receive weekly payments have been reminded that the festive cash will only be given out to people with long-term payments of 12 months or more.

One social media user complained: “I unexpectedly lost my job and was unemployed while looking for a job.

“I was expecting the Christmas bonus today, but only got the regular rate because I haven’t received unemployment benefits for a year!”

But the Department for Social Protection states: “Your Christmas bonus will only be paid to you if you have received a qualifying payment for at least 12 months.”

The Christmas bonus is again 100 percent of the normal weekly social welfare benefit – or double the weekly benefit, with a minimum payment of 20 euros.

The cash raise will be issued with all normal welfare payments this week.


And thousands who have been on sick leave for more than 12 months were included in the Christmas bonus scheme for the first time this year.

About 17,500 sick pay recipients should receive the bonus between December 6 and December 23.

And those on home care allowance receive the bonus paid with monthly payments in December.

The following payments qualify for the Christmas bonus – as soon as the duration criterion is met:

  • Back to Education Allowance and Back to Work Enterprise Allowance – Individuals receiving jobseeker benefits must receive the allowance for at least 12 months or 312 days, but may be able to use time on a jobseeker’s payment to qualify.
  • Back to work family dividend
  • Pension payment for 65-year-olds
  • blind pension
  • Nursing allowance and nursing allowance – including nursing allowance at half the rate
  • community employment
  • Allowance and benefit for deserted wives
  • Daily Expense Allowance, formerly called Direct Provision Allowance for 12 months
  • Disability Allowance
  • Invalidity pension and widow’s, widower’s or survivor’s pension of the registered partner under the occupational accident scheme
  • Home Care Assistance
  • Farm Assist
  • Child-raising allowance – contributory and non-contributory
  • Sickness benefit from 12 months
  • disability pension
  • Unemployment benefit for 12 months or 312 days
  • Transitional benefit for jobseekers
  • Magdalene laundry payment
  • Payment for single parents
  • partial capacity advantage
  • rural social system
  • State pension – contributory and non-contributory
  • Social assistance allowance for 12 months
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  • VTOS allowance for people who receive unemployment benefits. You must receive VTOS for at least 12 months or 312 days, but you may be able to spend time paying your job seeker to qualify.
  • Widow’s, widower’s or life partner’s pension – contributory and non-contributory


Minister Heather Humphreys said: “Christmas is a very special time of year but it can be a costly time for individuals and families, particularly with the current cost of living.

“I am therefore pleased to announce that a double Christmas bonus will be paid out next week.

“This payment aims to put more money into the pockets of our pensioners, carers, people with disabilities, widows and single parents.

“I am particularly pleased that this year’s Christmas bonus is being extended to long-term sick pay recipients for the first time.

“The vast majority of people take sick pay for a very short period of time and then go back to work. However, there is a small group of people with serious medical conditions who receive the payments for longer periods of time.

“These are people who have worked their entire lives, paid their PRSI, and then have to retire because of serious and potentially long-lasting health problems.

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“I have had a number of people raise this issue with me and I am pleased to confirm that people on sick pay for 12 months or more are now receiving the payment.

“Approximately 17,500 people will benefit from this move.” Big change in welfare payments THIS WEEK as thousands of Irish have warned of switching ahead of Christmas

Fry Electronics Team

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