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HomeBeefInvalidity Pension: What is it, and who can qualify?
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnanehttps://www.thatsfarming.com/
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Invalidity Pension: What is it, and who can qualify?

In this article, That’s Farming, looks at an Invalidity Pension, eligibility criteria and payment rates.

According to the Department of Social Protection, an Invalidity Pension is a weekly payment to people who are permanently incapable of work as a result of an illness or disability.

However, to qualify for payment – which is a taxable income source – you must satisfy both medical and social insurance conditions as set out by the department.

You may qualify for Invalidity Pension, if you are receiving Illness Benefit or Disability Allowance, depending on your medical condition.

Social insurance conditions:

To avail of an Invalidity Pension, you must have at least:

  • 260 weeks of paid PRSI contributions (5 years) since entering social insurance and;
  • 48 weeks of paid or credited PRSI contributions in the last OR second-last complete contribution year before the relevant date.

According to the department, only PRSI contributions at Class S, H, E and A are acceptable.

Moreover, a person cannot use voluntary contributions to satisfy the conditions for an Invalidity Pension.

Medical conditions:

To qualify, you must:

  • Have been incapable of work for at least 12 months and be likely to be incapable of work for at least another 12 months (you may have been getting Illness Benefit or Disability Allowance during that time) or:
  • Be permanently incapable of work (in certain cases of very serious illness or disability, you can transfer directly from another social welfare payment or from your job to Invalidity Pension).
How to apply

Before making an application, you will need a PPS Number – Personal Public Service Number.

Fill in an application form entitled: Invalidity Pension (INV1) on this page and attach supporting documentation such as your P60, a letter from your former employer, ect.

Then, send the completed application form to the address provided.

A deciding officer determines the status of your application concerning scheme conditionality.

During the course of your claim, you may be requested to attend a medical assessment. A medical assessor will submit their opinion to a deciding officer regarding your continued entitlement.

You may also be able to participate in training courses with the Department of Social Protection’s permission and approval.

Moreover, the department will continue payments until you reach 66, depending on your medical condition, when you will transfer to the State Pension.

Note, that since December 1st, 2017, the department extended the pension to self-employed persons.

According to the department, “you cannot do paid work and get Invalidity Pension”.

Payment rates [Source: CitizensInformation.ie]:
Maximum personal rate Increase for an adult-dependent Increase for a child-dependent
€213.50 €152.50 Child under 12 years of age

€40 (full rate)

€20 (half rate)

Child aged 12 and over

€48 (full rate)

€24 (half-rate)

Partial Capacity Benefit

If an Invalidity Pension recipient wishes to return to work, they may for Partial Capacity Benefit, if their capacity for work is reduced by their medical condition.

The scheme’s objective is to support such people to return to the workplace without “fear of loss” of their disability-related social welfare benefits.

In response to a parliamentary question from deputy Robert Troy, Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys previously said:

“The Partial Capacity Benefit scheme extends the welfare system by explicitly recognising and responding to the reality that some people with disabilities will have a capacity to engage in open market employment while continuing to receive some income support from the State.”

“If awarded, Partial Capacity Benefit will allow them to continue to receive, in addition to their earnings from employment, a percentage of their illness benefit or invalidity pension payment while working.”

“After the medical assessment, if a person’s disability is rated as moderate, severe or profound their previous payment continues at 50%, 75% or 100% per cent, respectively.”

You can read more on this social welfare measure.

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