Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005

Entitlement to assistance.

[1993 s120(1); 1996 s22(1)]

141.—(1) Subject to this Act, a person shall be entitled to unemployment assistance in respect of any week of unemployment where—

(a) the person has attained the age of 18 years and has not attained pensionable age,

(b) the person proves unemployment in the prescribed manner, and

(c) the person's weekly means, subject to subsection (2)(d), do not exceed the amount of unemployment assistance (including any increases of unemployment assistance) that would be payable to the person under this Chapter if that person had no means.

[1993 s120(2); 1997 s30(2)(a)]

(2) (a) Otherwise than as provided for in regulations, a person shall not be entitled to unemployment assistance in respect of the first 3 days of unemployment in any continuous period of unemployment.

(b) For the purpose of this section, any period before the relevant date of application for unemployment assistance shall not be reckoned as, or as part of, a continuous period of unemployment.

(c) Any period during which a person is disqualified for receiving unemployment assistance shall not be reckoned in the computation of any continuous period of unemployment of that person.

[1997 s28(1)]

(d) Where the spouse of a claimant for unemployment assistance is not the claimant's qualified adult, or is a spouse in respect of whom an increase is payable by virtue of regulations made under section 297 , the means of the claimant shall be taken to be one-half the means.

[1993 s120(3); 1996 s22(1)]

(3) In this Chapter, any 3 days of unemployment, whether consecutive or not, within a period of 6 consecutive days shall be treated as a week of unemployment and any 2 such weeks not separated by more than 52 weeks shall be treated as one continuous period of unemployment, and references in this Chapter to being continuously unemployed or to continuous unemployment shall be read accordingly.

[1996 s22(1)]

(4) For the purposes of this Chapter, a day shall not be treated in relation to any person as a day of unemployment unless on that day, the person—

(a) is capable of work,

(b) is, or by reason of the person's participation in an activity prescribed for the purposes of this subsection and subject to any conditions that may be prescribed, is deemed to be, or is exempted from being required to be, available for employment, and

(c) is genuinely seeking, but is unable to obtain, suitable employment having regard to the person's age, physique, education, normal occupation, place of residence and family circumstances.

[1993 s120(4)]

(5) Sunday shall not be treated as a day of unemployment and shall be disregarded in computing any period of consecutive days.

[1993 s120(5); 2005 (SW&P) s12(b)]

(6) Notwithstanding subsection (3), any period of continuous—

(a) employment under a scheme administered by an Foras ?iseanna Saothair and known as Community Employment,

(b) employment under a scheme administered under the aegis of the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs and known as the Rural Social Scheme,

(c) participation in a scheme administered by an Foras ?iseanna Saothair and known as the Enterprise Allowance Scheme,

(d) participation in a scheme administered by an Foras ?iseanna Saothair and known as the Alternance Scheme,

(e) attendance at a training course provided or approved by an Foras ?iseanna Saothair,

(f) participation in a scheme administered by the Commission of the European Union and known as the European Voluntary Service Initiative,

(g) participation in a scheme administered by the Minister and known as the Part-Time Job Incentive Scheme,

(h) participation in a scheme administered by the Minister for Education and Science and known as the Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme,

(i) participation in, employment under or attendance at a prescribed scheme or course, or

(j) receipt of or entitlement to pre-retirement allowance,

shall be disregarded in treating, under subsection (3), any 2 continuous periods of unemployment not separated by more than 52 weeks as one continuous period of unemployment.

[1993 s120(6)]

(7) Regulations may make provision as to the days which are or are not to be treated for the purposes of unemployment assistance as days of unemployment.

[1993 s120(7)]

(8) Subsection (2)(a) shall not apply in relation to the payment of unemployment assistance to a person who ceased, not earlier than 52 weeks before the day in respect of which his or her application for unemployment assistance is made, to be entitled to unemployment benefit—

(a) by reason of having, by virtue of section 67 , exhausted his or her entitlement to that benefit, or

(b) where the person is of or over 65 years of age, by reason of having failed to satisfy the contribution condition in section 64 (1)(b).

[2004 (MP) s17 & Sch 1; 2005 (SW& P) s26 & Sch 4]

(9) A person shall not be entitled to unemployment assistance under this section unless he or she is habitually resident in the State at the date of the making of the application for unemployment assistance.