S.I. No. 28/1991 - Social Welfare (Employment of Inconsiderable Extent) Regulations, 1991.

S.I. No. 28 of 1991.


The Minister for Social Welfare, in exercise of the powers conferred on him by section 3 and paragraph 5 of Part II of the First Schedule to the Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act, 1981 (No. 1 of 1981), hereby makes the following Regulations:—

1. These Regulations may be cited as the Social Welfare (Employment of Inconsiderable Extent) Regulations, 1991.

2. These Regulations shall come into operation on the 6th day of April, 1991.

3. In these Regulations—

"the Principal Act" means the Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act. 1981;

"employee" means an employed contributor in receipt of reckonable earnings;

"reckonable earnings" has the meaning assigned to it in article 4 of the Social Welfare (Collection of Employment Contributions by the Collector-General) Regulations, 1989 ( S.I. No. 298 of 1989 ) or in article 4 of the Social Welfare (Collection of Employment Contributions for Special Contributors) Regulations, 1989, ( S.I. No. 302 of 1989 ), as the case may be.

4. The Social Welfare (Employment of Inconsiderable Extent) Regulations, 1979 ( S.I. No. 136 of 1979 ) are hereby revoked.

5.—(1) Subject to articles 6 and 7 of these Regulations, employment in any contribution week (which apart from these Regulations would be insurable employment) in one or more employments (other than systematic short-time employment) where the total amount of reckonable earnings payable to or in respect of an employee from such employment or employments is less than £40 in respect of that contribution week, is hereby specified as being employment of inconsiderable extent.

(2) For the purposes of sub-article (1) systematic short-time employment shall be deemed to occur in a firm or undertaking where the employees of such firm or undertaking had, prior to its introduction, been engaged in full-time remunerative employment and where, subsequent to the introduction of such systematic short-time employment, the employees are working a lesser number of hours in the working week than was normal to that firm or undertaking and where there is an expectation that the firm or undertaking will resume normal full-time remunerative employment within a reasonable period.

6. These Regulations shall apply only to an employment which, but for the provisions of these Regulations, would be an employment in respect of which the rate of employment contribution is that payable by virtue of section 10 (1) (b) of the Principal Act.

7. Notwithstanding article 5, any employee who is in an employment specified in sub-section (11) or sub-section (12) (as inserted by section 3 of the Social Welfare (Amendment) Act, 1984 (No. 27 of 1984)) of section 38 of the Principal Act, shall, irrespective of the amount of the reckonable earnings derived from such employment, be treated as if he were in insurable (occupational injuries) employment in respect of that employment.

8. In the case of an employee who is employed by more than one employer in any contribution week and whose reckonable earnings in any one of these employments is less than £40, such employee shall inform each such employer of the amount of his reckonable earnings in respect of his other employment or employments, for the purposes of determining whether the provisions of Article 5 apply in his case.

GIVEN under the Official Seal of the Minister for Social Welfare this

14th day of February, 1991.


Minister for Social Welfare.


These regulations change the basis for determining when employment is of inconsiderable extent and therefore not insurable under the social insurance system except for occupational injuries benefits. Under the regulations any employment in respect of which weekly earnings are less than £40 will be regarded as employment of inconsiderable extent. This limit will not, however, apply to systematic short-time employment which will be insurable, irrespective of the level of weekly earnings.

The regulations also specify that employment in the Social Employment Scheme or as a FÁS trainee will, irrespective of the level or earnings, be insurable only for occupational injuries benefits.